Winter Ailments and Remedies
The Chinese believe in proactively treating and nourishing the body according to seasonal changes. Using specific ingredients and creating the right soups can help to counteract any negatives effects the weather may have and prevent ailments from developing.
During the winter months, potential ailments to the human body include:
Wind and cold invading the lungs: When the lung is weakened by wind and cold, it is believed the body will be more open to colds and illness.
Dryness attacks on the lungs: Winter air is drier than during summer months causing the depletion of fluid in the respiratory system, reducing it’s ability to nourish the body and leading to dryness of mouth, nose and throat.
Dryness-heat in the stomach and the intestines: People typically eat heavier foods during winter months. This, combined with the dry climate will deplete fluid in the body and result in dryness-heat inside the stomach and intestines.
Deficiency of yang and coldness in the body: Chinese believe that during winter months, the cold air invades the human body, depletes “kidney-yang”, and causes deficiency of “yang chi” inside the body. This is especially pronounced in women with prenatal yang-chi deficiency.
Deficieny of yin and heat in the body: At the same time, the dry air causes the depletion of “kidney-yin”, causing the depletion of body fluid and leading to endogenous heat inside the body.
To proactively protect against winter ailments, we are encouraged to use certain ingredients to counter the negative effects of “cold” and “dry” and to create warm and delicious soups which can expel cold, clear dryness, clear and moisten the lungs, replenish kidney-yang, and nourish kidney-yin.
Examples of ideal winter soup ingredients include:
- Fish maw or fish stomach
- Lotus root
- Sea Coconut
- Snow fungus
Our personal favourite winter soups include:
- Chicken and dried longan soup
- Oxtail and vegetable soup
- Pork Bones and Lotus Root with Chestnuts Soup
- Chicken Fish Stomach Soup
- Chicken Feet, Snow Fungus and Apple Soup
So drink up, stay warm, keep hydrated, and enjoy.