TCM/AYURVEDIC VIEW ON FOOD FLAVORS, SEASONS, ​AND THEIR CORRESPONDING BENEFITS!

Food has flavors for a reason. Once in the body, the six (6) flavors: sweet, sour, salty, pungent ( spicy),bitter and astringent, each have an affinity with a particular organ system. The general rules for the energy of food in Ayurvedic is that: If it grows in the air and sunshine, it is most likely Yang; if it grows in the earth and darkness, it is probably yin; if it is soft, wet and cool, it is more yin; and if it is hard, dry and spicy, it is more yang.BXzdTgYtSy96824wG6rA_six_tastes_2018_lowres The four seasons:Spring is the season of growth and action. It is a good time to eat sour food, which helps to cleans and stimulate the system; food like lemons, and tomatoes.Summer & late summer: is the time to eat energetically cooling food like fruits and vegetable; like bananas, watermelon, and kiwi. Late summer is the time to build the digestive strength for the sold months ( winter). Startup by eating food that supports digestion, such as all yellow and orange food like chickpeas and apricots.Fall/Autumn: is time for pungent food and herbs to help stimulate and clear the lung food like garlic, peppermint, and pears.Winter season: should be full of root vegetable, warming herbs like ginger and rosemary, other food include kidney beans, pumpkin, sweet potatoes oatmeal.the6tastes_1FOOD FLAVORS:Pungent/ spicy foodThey are connected to the lung and the large intestine, one of the benefits of adding onion to your ingredients is that, it help clear mucus from your lungs. Energy from Spices such as cayenne helps the moving ability in the large intestine. Spicy foods promote distribution of stagnant energy and blood circulation while they also stimulate appetite. They have a warming action, which help promote energy to move upwards and outwards to the body’s surface like sweating. They stimulates digestion and metabolism.Examples of food: fresh ginger, unions, garlic, celery, chili pepper and cinnamon.Sweet foods:They strengthen the spleen energy, nourish the body’s fluids and relieve inner tension. But keep in mind excess that sweet foods can also weaken the kidneys ( reproductive system in TCM and affect the stomach and spleen ( TCM) organ system and energy system ( stomach). Weakened kidneys that is caused by excess sweets can lead to bone and teeth disorders, obesity and weakness of connective tissue. Sweet food can be divided into two categories: Empty sweets are simple sugar and have no nutritional value; they cause blood sugar to rise rapidly and then drop. This action can lead to fatigue. On the other hand, we have Full sweets that consist of complex carbohydrates that have a strengthening and nourishing action. They Builds tissues and calms nervesFood like: honey, sugar cane sweet potatoes etc are consider full sweets.Sour food :They affect the liver and gall bladder. They are also called astringent and their function is to arrest abnormal discharge of fluids and other substances from the body, like diarrhea, vomiting and heavy sweating. They also have a part to play digestion food like adding lemon to your drinks. Sour food Cleanses tissues and increases absorption of minerals.Example of food: lemon, vinegar, tangerines, oranges, pineapple tomatoes etc.Bitter food:They relate to the heart and small intestine. They help clear heat from the body in other words infection or inflammation. They can also dry dampens like infections, mucus, sickness, they help stimulate appetite and promote lowering effects like urination and bowel movements. Bitter foods supplement heart cooling and also have a calming effect, in regards to stress and mental strain. Keep in mind that too much bitter flavor food could lead to diarrhea, dehydration, bone damage. They detoxify and lightens tissues.Ex: vinegar, coffee, wild cucumber, wine ect.Salty food:They affects the kidney and bladder. It improves taste to food, lubricates tissues, stimulates digestion. TCM it is understood that the kidney exercises control over the reproductive, endocrine and nervous system. Salty foods dissipate accumulation, nourish blood, and lubricate intestines to induce bowel movements. Keep in mind also that too much salt injures the blood. Salty taste is composed of Fire and Water and is hot, heavy, and moist by nature. It is found in any salt such as sea salt and rock salt, sea vegetables like seaweed and kelp, and foods to which large amounts of salt are added like nuts, chips, and pickles.Astringent food:Absorbs water, tightens tissues, dries fats. it is the least common of all the 6 Tastes and can be found in legumes, such as beans and lentils. Some fruits like cranberries, pomegranates, pears, and dried fruit, vegetables such as, broccoli, cauliflower, artichoke, asparagus and turnip, grains such as ,buckwheat and quinoa, spices and herbs like turmeric, coffee, and tea. Astringent taste is not as cold as Bitter taste but has a greater cooling effect on the body than Sweet taste. Astringent taste is classified more in relation to its effect on the tongue than its actual taste. It creates a puckering sensation in the mouth. Foods like broccoli or cauliflower have a mildly Astringent taste that is less detectable. Dry foods such as crackers and chips, most raw vegetables, and the skins of fruits also have Astringent qualities.

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