The Chinese viewpoint of a balanced diet is very different from that in the West. In the Chinese system, a balanced diet is one which includes all 5 tastes – spicy, sour, bitter, sweet, salty as well as bland. Foods and herbs which have a particular taste tend to have particular properties.
For example, bitter herbs and foods tend to be drying and Cold. This tends to make them good for treating Damp Heat conditions, but contraindicated for people who are too Cold and/or too Dry.
Similar to acupuncture and Chinese herbal medicine the same TCM theory applies. diet modifications that allow one to eat according to their constitution are used as an adjusnt in helping achieve and maintain balance for the individual . During the course of treatment modifications may be needed which may extend beyond in order to aid in the treatment of the affliction and return one to a state of wellbeing.
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