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Ginger, Ginger, Ginger, December 14 by Kathleen McLaughlin, R.Ac.

In ancient China, people followed the cycles of nature. Winter is a time of reflection, introspection and slowing down. It is perfect for practices such as meditation and qi gong. In TCM, the kidneys are the foundation of energy in the body. During the winter, we can nourish our kidney qi through rest, reflection and eating warming foods. Eat warm, cooked foods such as soups, stews, root vegetables, beans, garlic and ginger. Get plenty of rest and stay warm. Here is a delicious ginger tea recipe:

Ginger milk tea

2 cups water

2 Tbsp freshly grated ginger

2 bags strong black tea such as English breakfast.

2 Tbsp honey

1/2 cup almond milk

In a small pot, bring water and ginger to a boil. Lower heat and simmer for 3 minutes. Remove from heat, add tea bags and steep for 3 minutes. Strain tea through a fine mesh strainer. Pour into two mugs, add 1 Tbsp honey to each and the almond milk. Enjoy :)

Chinese Food Therapy - Eating in tune with the seasons: October 10, 2013 by Kathleen McLaughlin, R.Ac.

Fall is a time when we begin to reflect inward. In Traditional Chinese Medicine, salty and sour foods are added to our diet in the fall season. Salt moistens dryness, softens hard lumps, improves digestion, detoxifies and is grounding. Seaweed, kelp and miso are good sources of salt. Fall is also a perfect time to introduce sour foods like apple cider vinegar, sauerkraut and lemon. They are astringent and help to break down heavier meals consisting of proteins and fats. Sour foods can also prevent excess sweat, help diarrhea, and firm up weak sagging tissues such as hemorrhoids. In addition to these two groups, we also add bitter foods, such as amaranth, romaine, and rye, which move the bowels, reduce inflammation and infection, cool heat and clear stagnation. Chinese medicine is all about balance. The same is true of Chinese food therapy. A person's constitution must first be balanced before balancing the person to the season."

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