Recently I made a chart for wild greens substitutions: Turn Your Favorite Recipes Wild, (in our sister blog, Food Under Foot), and today I thought about expanding it in terms of Chinese medicine.
Often, when we experience cravings, it is because we are not eating a balance of all 5 tastes. In our culture, we tend to stick with sweet, salty and sour, ignoring bitter and pungent/spicy almost completely. (Incidentally, the amount of wild greens that fell into the sour category was huge!)
Check out the chart below and see if you can add more balance to your menu. You will feel more satisfied and widen your range of nutrients. The balance and health of your emotions, organs and whole body is effected by the foods we eat.
|Bitter||Fire||Joy, lack of joy||Heart/small intestine||Lettuce, endive, kale, green tea||Dandelion, chicory, broad dock greens|
|Sweet||Earth||Compassion, worry||Spleen/stomach||Grains, spinach, squash, fruit||Lambs quarters leaves and seeds, nettles, chickweed|
|Pungent/spicy||Metal||Sorrow, letting go||Lungs/Lg. Intestine||Onion, garlic, arugula||Garlic mustard, onion grass, ramps|
|Salty||Water||Fear, wisdom, will power||Kidney/Bladder||Sea salt, seaweed, soy/tofu, swiss chard||Wild orach, plantain leaves, seaweed|
|Sour||Wood||Anger, creativity, growth||Liver/gall bladder||Fermented foods, cheese, collard greens||Yellow dock leaves, Japanese knotweed shoots, staghorn sumac, sheep sorrel, wood sorrel|
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Love to all,
~ Melissa and Dave
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Read these articles by Melissa Sokulski, L.Ac. in Natural News for more information: