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Chinese Medicine Nutrition for Lungs and Mental Health

By: Matt Walton, R.TCMP, R.Ac

What a world we’re finding ourselves in! While what’s happening worldwide is something everyone knows about, perhaps you didn’t know that there’s much more we can be doing about the impact of this pandemic from the comfort of our own (self-quarantined) homes.

Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) is a millennia old system that has never missed a beat. In fact, it is currently being used in reportedly 90% of cases in China! Hospitals throughout the country have seamlessly blended modern medicine with traditional — simply because it works and has the science to prove it.

Nutrition is the backbone of our health and immunity. What we put through our bodies, day in and day out, are what contributes to our overall vitality, resiliency and our overall state of health.

So there’s no better time than now to reclaim our health! Here’s how to improve your diet to maintain your immunity and your mental health — in this time like no other

Chinese Medicine Nutrition Tips

Lungs & Immune System (Wei Qi):

  • Radishes (red, black, daikon), rice, mustard greens, oats, fresh ginger*, horseradish, seaweeds, the entire onion family (garlic*, scallions, etc.), cruciferous vegetables (cabbage, broccoli, rapini etc.), apples, all mushrooms, watercress, pear/apple, rice, sweet/potato/yam, herring

Depression (Liver Qi Stagnation):

  • Dark/bitter leafy greens, green cooking herbs (thyme, basil, dill, cilantro, coriander etc), all brassicas, carrots, radishes, plums, turmeric, lemon/lime, apple cider vinegar, all onions, mint, beets, moderate raw foods, honey

Anxiety (Heart Yin):

  • Oats*, lychee/longan fruit* (similar to lychee, available dried in Chinatowns), all mushrooms*, fish, chicken, beef, cherries, red grapes, short grain brown rice, goat/sheep milk, wheat germ/berries, cucumber, celery, red lettuces, mulberries, chia seeds, dill, basil, ghee, coconut oil*

Stress & Adrenals (Kidney Yin/Jing):

  • Seaweeds, black beans, black sesame, miso, dark berries, melons, marrow, ghee (clarified butter), almonds, goat milk, organ meats, goji berries, chia seeds, lentils

Immunity & Stress Herbs (Immune Tonics & Adaptogens):

  • Astragalus, North American ginseng, turkey tail, reishi/ganoderma, shiitake (in fact, mushrooms in general), elecampane (related to ragweed), chlorella, royal jelly, nettles, schisandra, maca, ginseng, liquorice (excellent for adrenal fatigue), eluthero, rhodiola, chaga

Foods to Avoid:

  • Avoid “Damp” (mucus) forming foods which easily impair Lung Qi: Cow dairy (goat/sheep okay), pork, peanuts and excessive nuts in general, hydrogenated oils, excessive eggs, juices (especially tropical fruit, orange & tomato), excessive bananas, pineapple, sugar (all refined), or cold/frozen temperature foods

So that’s it! I’ll soon be preparing a Q&A Webinar to answer any of your questions and to go a little more in depth into some of these aspects that obviously go much deeper. Stay healthy and inspired!


~Matt Walton, R.TCMP, R.Ac

To learn much more:
The Essence of Chinese Medicine by Matt Walton R. TCMP
The Inspired Health Handbook by Matt Walton R. TCMP
Healing with Whole Foods by Paul Pitchford

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