Category Archives: Health

How To Make a Healthy Simple Seaweed Plant Salad

The word weed may be a misnomer because harvesting seaweed is tapping into the  foraging movement and receiving the bounty of mother earth as a free gift.  In reality, I imagine these sea plants are farmed.  Nevertheless, they are full of wonderful minerals, and are highly nutritious.

This recipe is inspired by the  Sea Plant Salad on  Maangchi.com.

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup of dry sea weed: wakami, hajiki or kombu. (After soaking 3 ½ cups)
  • 6 tbs of soy sauce (more or less depending on your taste)
  • 1 tbs of sugar, or agave
  • 1 tbs of minced garlic
  • chopped green onion
  • 4 or 5 tbs of vinegar
  • sesame seeds optional

Directions:

  1. Soak  the sea weed in boiling water for at least an hour, until the sea weed is fully softened. Soak kombu longer. Drain and save the water for soup.
  2. Rinse in cold water. Gently squeeze sea weed to get rid of any excess water, and cut to the size that you like to eat.
  3. Put the sea weed in a big bowl  and add the soy sauce, vinegar, minced garlic, sugar,  and chopped green onion. Mix it up by hand.
  4. Sprinkle some sesame seeds on top. Enjoy!

 

Variation:  cut up lettuce or cucumbers and put sea weed on top.

Children: Have them soak the vegetables, engage in discussion how they expand.

Community: Do a pot luck of different sea weed recipes.  See my miso soup recipe next.

How To Detox The Liver Using Green Mung Bean Soup

Sometimes the liver becomes overloaded with toxins which may be associated with various types of health problems such as gout, arthritis, pains in the joints, diseases, etc. It is a good idea to eat healthy meals that he help in detoxing the liver.

This is the fifth recipe in this series.  The goal is to write: easy, flexible (mostly) vegan and gluten free recipes for anyone, especially the ‘I am not a cook’ crowd.

“You are what you eat.”, I believe we can all prepare our own food as easy as 1, 2, 3.  This helps us regain the power to choose, the vitality of good nutrition, the creative fun of activities that nourish body and soul.   These recipes are here to eliminate any barrier to enter the dynamic world of having a vital and healthy relationship with what we consume.  Enjoy cooking without (too much) cooking…a la Bruce Lee.

A friend of mine went to a Chinese doctor with a knee problem.  The doctor prescribed mung bean soup.  According to the doctor, my friend’s  knee problem was due to too much uric acid build up in his blood. In Asia mung beans are powerful cleansers. Continue reading

How to Use Chinese Gua Sha for Back Pain, Headaches, Colds, Coughs, Flu, Stress, and Itchy Skin

 

Gua Sha is an ancient technique for treating aches and pain, headaches, common cold, allergies, stress, itchy skin, and any other health problem caused by the accumulation of toxins in the body. It is used throughout the world but especially in Asia and South America. It is also a well known technique used in Eastern Europe and to a limited extent in Western Europe. It is also known in Africa.

Gua Sha translates into scraping sand. The sand in this case are little nodules of toxins that accumulate just under the skin, usually on the back or in the shoulders but often in the arms and other areas around the joints. These toxins create blood stagnation which in turn creates pain, itching, and potentially disease (e.g. colds,  flu, coughs) since bacteria can accumulate around areas of stagnation.

In order to release the toxins through the skin, Chinese physicians use the ancient technique of Gua Sha. By scraping the skin with a Gua Sha blade (there are various techniques to do this),
Continue reading

How To Prevent Heart Disease with a Mediterranean Diet

The World Health Organization has published findings that suggest that lifestyle can contribute to as much as 80% of the deadly chronic diseases we all face, and by maintaining a healthy diet, body weight, exercise regimen, and avoiding all smoking it is possible to greatly reduce the risk of developing chronic diseases such as heart diseases.

A recent study, published in the New England Journal of Medicine underscores how dramatically changes in diet can greatly reduce risk of heart disease. The study, one of the largest controlled dietary studies ever performed included 7400 participants and was performed by a team of researchers at the Department of Internal Medicine, Hospital Clinic, Barcelona, Spain. The purpose of the study was to study the effects of the Mediterranean Diet on people with high risk for developing heart disease. Continue reading

How To Practice Qigong (Chi Kung) for Better Blood Circulation, More Energy, and Health

The Chinese practice of Qigong (sometimes written as Chi Kung) goes back thousands of years. The benefits of Qigong practice are enumerable, but fundamentally the breathing and slow, rhythmical movements are designed to increase your blood circulation, increase energy, and improve your overall health and feeling of well-being. It can be practiced by all ages since the movements are quite simple.

Here is the first part of a two part video which hopefully will inspire you to practice Qigogng.

BENEFITS OF  QIGONG

  • Relaxed, rhythmic movements allow blood to more easily flow in your body. Blood is like oil that lubricates a car. It brings nourishment to all of the cells in your body and also removes toxins from your body, toxins that can create all types of illness.
  • Deep abdominal breathing, which is used in all ancient health practices such as Qigong and Yoga, oxygenates the body and provides the necessary breath to increase energy and store energy in your body. This would be analogous to getting a fresh new battery and generator for your car.
  • Qigong is designed to remove stress and tension from your body. Stress and tension impedes good blood flow and proper breathing and is the enemy of good health. Stress is probably the number one source of disease and ill health.
  • By increasing blood and energy, you increase the ability of your body to maintain its own health and to combat any illnesses or other health problems that might arise in your life.

HOW TO PRACTICE QIGONG EXERCISES

  • Practice without tension in your body. Muscles should be relaxed but not spaghetti-like. Your shoulders should drop. You back should be relatively straight and sitting on your hops. You should feel like your body is like a balloon that has been filled with air. Continue reading

How To Get Rid of Zits (Acne) With Healthy, Natural Chinese Dietary Principles

Youth is filled with crises and acne (zits) being one of the worse. Makeup and blemish cover-ups may hide the zits but it is still there and they can be quite uncomfortable. For thousands of years, Chinese health and dietary principles have been used  to manage, minimize, and control acne and maybe even get rid of them).

Simply put, from a Chinese health perspective, acne is the result of too much build up of heat in the body. Heat, from a Chinese health sense doesn’t necessarily equate to hot (though there is some similarity), but rather to an energetic heat that one feels. For example, a sore throat, an earache, hot feet or ears, are all signs of too much heat. The hot feeling of acne pimples on the skin are another sign of too much heat. The body is simply trying to purge itself of the heat and the pimples are the result of the body’s attempts to  purge through the skin.

Of course, when a person moves from childhood to adulthood, there are many changes in the body that create lots of internal heat. The objective of Chinese dietary health practices is to minimize the amount of excess heat that is being generated in the body. So here are some basic things you can do to reduce the problem of acne:

What Not To Do:

  • Avoid greasy, oily, fatty foods at all costs. Deep fried foods are the worst things you can eat. So McDonald’s french fries should be considered completely off limits.
  • Avoid sugars, especially cane sugar. Use substitutes such as agave, honey, maple syrup in very moderate amounts.
  • Avoid dairy which is phlegm (mucous) producing and clogs up your digestion system. Continue reading