Nutrition is a very important element of the complete Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) system. It is one of both healing and disease prevention. Many diseases and symptoms can be treated with dietary changes alone; however it often takes longer and requires the utmost compliance and dedication on the patient’s behalf. Unfortunately, today’s population has a poor concept of what constitutes a good diet. The fast paced lifestyle often gives nutritious eating a low priority. At the same time, mind-boggling numbers of different diet fads and controversial dietary regimes add even more confusion to modern day eating habits. As a result, we see deterioration in the quality of people’s lives in the form of obesity, depression, diabetes, cardiovascular disease, arthritis, etc.
TCM nutrition uniquely differs from modern Western nutrition in that it determines the therapeutic properties of foods instead of analyzing the chemical constituents of them. The advantage of this approach lies in its ability to customize to every individual’s needs. Furthermore, TCM nutrition takes into consideration such factors as method of preparation, body type, season, and one’s geographical location in determining the appropriate diet.