Optimum Energy Food: Balancing Your Diet Through Yin and Yang

A plate with light and dark colored food arranged into the yin-yang symbol.

According to Chinese thinking, good food is considered good medicine, and traditional Chinese doctors have always utilized the power of food to cure or relieve illness. (Image: Fuhrer via Pixabay)

For thousands of years, this symbol has been recognized as two opposing forces in the universe working in harmony to achieve balance. This includes balancing your diet.

According to Chinese thinking, good food is considered good medicine, and traditional Chinese doctors have always utilized the power of food to cure or relieve illness. Only if a disease is very resistant will herbs and other healing methods be considered.

Subscribe to our Newsletter!

Receive selected content straight into your inbox.

Chinese philosophy breaks down food into yin and yang, combining the two for best effect. Yin foods tend to have a calming and cooling effect on the body, while yang foods warm and stimulate. Processed foods devoid of fiber and laden with additives, refined sugar, and salt are considered toxic and not beneficial in gaining nutrients.

Balancing your diet is very important for your health.
Yin foods tend to have a calming and cooling effect on the body. (Image: via Pixabay)

If your energy is low and you are feeling tired, depressed, or sluggish, it makes sense to try these theories and increase yang foods. If you are stressed, anxious, over-excited, or angry, try the soothing yin foods. If life is in balance and you feel pretty good, then it may be best to adapt your diet by observing the external environment. If you are in a cold, damp, or wet place, then the predominantly yang diet would be best. If it is hot and dry, then the yin diet would be more suitable.

Macrobiotics, the practice of understanding the effect that food and lifestyle have on health, takes into consideration your individual health condition and physiology in relation to your geographical location and seasonal changes in climate.

Japanese teacher George Ohsawa cured himself of so-called “incurable” diseases at the age of 18 by eating a simple diet of brown rice, miso soup, and sea vegetables. These foods are in the middle of the yin and yang spectrum. He then devoted his life to the study, which he named macrobiotics.

Miso soup in a black bowl with a pair of chopsticks resting on the side.
Japanese teacher George Ohsawa cured himself of so-called ‘incurable’ diseases at the age of 18 by eating a simple diet of brown rice, miso soup, and sea vegetables. (Image: Lachlan Hardy via Flickr)

Macrobiotics is based on balancing your diet with yin/yang foods

The macrobiotic way of life encourages you to eat foods that are locally grown and in season, and to avoid foods that are considered to be extremely yin or extremely yang. Ohsawa claimed that the modern diet of excess salt, refined sugar, dairy products, processed foods, and red meat upsets the body’s yin/yang balance, which in turn leads to disease. The body is always seeking balance, so if you eat an extreme yang food, such as meat or salty chips, your body will crave an extreme yin food, such as sugar or tropical fruits. The extremes affect not only physical health, but also mental health and behavior.

Foods are also classified into five tastes — sour, bitter, sweet, pungent, and salty. Balancing your diet means having meals where each of the tastes is met, yet in moderate measures. Sour can be found in pickles or lemon, bitter in parsley or sesame seeds, sweet in brown rice syrup or apple sauce, pungent in watercress or garlic, and salty in miso. The right combination of each should leave the eater feeling satisfied.

In the case of illness, certain foods and tastes may be emphasized and others left out to regain harmony.

Follow us on TwitterFacebook, or Pinterest

Recommended Stories

From the 'Grave of Fireflies.'

8 Outstanding Books That Inspired Studio Ghibli Films

Fans were ecstatic when Studio Ghibli made its entire back library (save for the World ...

Artwork for the single 'The Wall' by Malaysian rapper Namewee.

Namewee’s ‘The Wall’: A Metaphor for the CCP’s Repression of Mainland Chinese People

Wee Meng Chee, also known as Namewee, is a Malaysian singer-songwriter based in Taiwan. In ...

Studio Ghibli.

Anime Bonanza: Ghibli Will Soon Be Streaming on Netflix

When it comes to anime, the works of Studio Ghibli are considered the pinnacle. And ...

OpenAI's logo.

The Dawn of AI Has Come, and Its Implications for Education Couldn’t Be More Significant

The release of OpenAI’s ChatGPT chatbot has given us a glimpse into the future of ...

U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo.

Pompeo: America Must Take the Chinese Communist Party Head-On

U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo recently stated that he wants the American government to ...

The festiavl of Hanukkah.

Hanukkah: The Jewish Festival of Lights (Compared with Christmas)

In 2019, Jewish communities across the world will be celebrating the festival of Hanukkah between ...

The ionized gas wind in Makani.

Astronomers Catch Wind Rushing Out of Galaxy

Exploring the influence of galactic winds from a distant galaxy called Makani, UC San Diego’s ...

David Matas at a dinner.

Human Rights Lawyer David Matas Talks on Crimes of Forced Organ Harvesting

Nobel Peace Prize nominee and international human rights lawyer David Matas has spent years researching ...

Sweet and Sour Prawns.

Recipe: Sweet and Sour Prawns

Sweet and sour dishes are very popular in China, although the Chinese tend to use ...

Send this to a friend