The Chinese have eaten foods known to expel toxins and restore balance to the body for centuries and, in fact, many of the detox methods now embraced by Western culture such as drinking green tea or starting the day with hot lemon water have a long history in Chinese medicine.
Wing Yip, the UK's leading Oriental grocery supplier, has put together some simple rules for an effective Chinese detox to spring clean your body and mind.
These handy hints and tips have also been known to lead to a flatter tummy, improved sleep, clearer skin and boosted energy levels. Result!
Ho Yan Hor Herbal tea is considered somewhat of a miracle worker in China, and is known for its ability to cure the common cold and sooth headaches. Made of a mix of 24 carefully selected Chinese herbs, this 65 year old recipe is perfect for a morning detox. It is packed full of antioxidants and has mild diuretic qualities that cleanse your digestive system of toxins and lead to glowing skin and a peak in energy levels.
Oolong tea is said to increase fat burning ability by 10%, plus Green tea flushes out toxins and contains antioxidants called catechins that are known to increase liver function.
Chinese Super Foods
Vermicelli noodles are made from the starch of the mung bean which are packed full of antioxidants. Add to any stir fry as a low calorie, gluten free alternative to heavier wheat based noodles.
Leafy Pak Choi is also proven to aid digestion and contains a cocktail of vitamins A and C and powerful anti-oxidants.
Ginseng grows wild in north-eastern China and has been known aid the regulation of blood sugar levels. When brewed in tea it can act as a natural appetite suppressant. Ginseng has also been used as a natural alternative to Viagra. Ooohhh errrr.
Sesame seeds, known to actually protect livers cells from the damaging effects of alcohol and other chemicals, sesame seeds are a fantastic choice for a body clean up. Tahini is a staple in Asian cooking, made from ground sesame seeds; a gem for everyday detoxing!
Ginger is a powerful digestive aide and beyond settling tummy troubles, it is said to be a natural anti-inflammatory packed with antioxidants. Oh and don't forget garlic! It has been known to regulate blood sugar, aid the natural detoxification of nicotine and other toxins and can even help to reduce stress. Use freshly crushed garlic in all dishes and add to cooked dishes just before serving to preserve its anti-bacterial benefits. Just don't plan any romantic dates afterwards...
Balance your Yin and Yang
Ancient Chinese dieticians categorised all foods as either yin or yang depending on whether they generate heating (yang foods) or cooling (yin foods) sensations in our bodies. These terms often have nothing to do with the food's taste, nor how it is cooked, but relate to deeper essences of the foods nature.
Heating foods tend to be sweet, grow under the hot sun or contain lots of fats like apricots, grapefruits or walnuts. Cooling foods grow in little sunshine, are salty, lean, rich in potassium and have a soft and wet texture like corgettes, bananas, oysters, and seaweed.
Get yourself back on track this January with a healthy balanced meal of three parts yang and two parts yin.
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