History of Traditional Chinese Medicine in Nutritional Health

In order to stay in a healthy condition, the food we eat has become one of the most important factors in terms of preventing illness. Western theory states, you should eat adequate nutrition to support physical demands in terms of enough calories and consumption of every category of food daily: grains, vegetables, meat, dairy and fruit.


However, in TCM theory this is not enough; it requires us to adjust and match our nutritional intake according to nature during different seasons or outside environments during the day. Age and our body pattern should also be taken into consideration. All foods a natural element: cold, warm, hot, neutral – even taste can be categorized in the same way. For example, food with a bitter taste belongs to the cold category. Any type of food with a bitter taste would be best consumed during the summer season to cool our body and harmonize with the environment. If one complains of symptoms insomnia, bitter mouth, or thirst, the suggested food would be from the cold nature group such as watermelon, oranges, cantaloupe, celery, cucumber, etc. However, during the winter these fruits and vegetables would be the ones to avoid. Most meats are considered warm or hot, which is more suitable for the winter season.


TCM theory believes what you eat should make your body feel its best. Since everyone has a different body constitution, each may need a different type of food to satisfy its needs. As a unique and complex individual, a thorough evaluation of the initial assessment is necessary.


Screening form for Cold Pattern

  • Cold hands and feet
  • Prefer hot/warm food and drink
  • Pale complexion, pale lip
  • Late and prolonged period with blood clots
  • Fatigue, easily tired


Screening form for Heat Pattern

  • Dry mouth, bad breath, ulcerations (mouth or lips)
  • Scanty urine, dark yellow urine, constipation
  • Early period, thick-greasy-odor
  • Irritability, short temper, easily angry
  • Prefer cold drink or ice