If the spleen and stomach are unhealthy, the person will be prone to indigestion, physical fatigue, and dull skin. If the spleen and stomach are healthy, the body will have little illness and the individual will most likely have a long life. Three foods can nourish your spleen and stomach, which leads to better health. These foods, known as the “Three Treasures” for strengthening the spleen and stomach, are Chinese yams, pumpkins, and sweet potatoes.
‘Three Treasures’ for better health
1. Chinese yams
Chinese yams can nourish the spleen and stomach, invigorate kidney qi, reduce phlegm, and moisturize the skin. People with a weak spleen or stomach are prone to physical fatigue and indigestion. Eating Chinese yams can increase their physical strength; for teenagers, they can improve growth. If your spleen is healthy, your skin will become bright, so eating Chinese yams can moisturize the skin.
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Chinese yams also have the effect of lowering blood sugar. People who want to avoid high blood sugar can eat Yam Pork Ribs Soup. The ribs contain gelatin and calcium. The two ingredients, stewed together, are beneficial to your body and will give you better health. “Sishen Soup,” a well-known medicinal diet for invigorating the spleen and stomach, also contains Chinese yam. You can add more to the stew to reduce the problem of high blood sugar.
Pumpkin is good food for invigorating the stomach and digestion. It can nourish the spleen, increase appetite, and relieve stomach pain. Anyone suffering from a stomachache will feel more comfortable after eating pumpkin. From a nutritional perspective, pumpkin is rich in pectin, which can protect the gastric mucosa and prevent gastritis and gastric ulcers.
Irregular meal times always cause people who are busy at work to have a stomachache. If it is difficult to eat three meals regularly, it is a better choice to eat pumpkin porridge or pumpkin once or twice a week to nourish your stomach for better health.
The leaves and seeds of pumpkins are precious. Once, I met a friend in North Carolina, U.S., whose garden was full of pumpkins. When it became spring and summer, the pumpkin leaves grew very lush. So he cut some leaves, fried them, and shared them with me, and they were delicious and tasty.
Pumpkin farmers are unlikely to get the disease of prostate hypertrophy, which may be related to the fact that they often eat pumpkins and pumpkin seeds. Pumpkin seeds contain zinc, which is beneficial to the prostate.
3. Sweet potato
Sweet potatoes can nourish qi and help produce saliva, nourish spleen deficiency, improve digestion, and relieve constipation. When the elderly can’t eat anything, it might be suitable to cook a bowl of sweet potato porridge to help the elderly nourish their spleens and stomachs and strengthen their physical strength.
Sweet potatoes can also enable you to remove toxins and lower blood pressure because it is rich in “resistant starch,” which is not easy to absorb and can delay the rise of blood sugar. But different people have different constitutions. If you are concerned about this, you can try a small amount to see if blood sugar fluctuates significantly, and then decide whether to continue eating sweet potatoes to help you gain better health.
Translated by Joseph Wu and edited by Helen