At last – the food gluttony season has passed! If you are like many others and feeling it in your tummy ie a bloated abdomen that seems not able to go down, then join the crew. During the Christmas season we tend to eat a-lot more than we are used to, as well as often eating types of food that we are not used to eating. Our poor digestion starts feeling the strain and begins to strain when pushing the food through our system. Waste accumulates in our intestines, our spleens sag under the pressure and before we know it we are feeling tired, gassy, lacking in appetite, bad breath, maybe nauseous and of course bloated. The slightest bit of food that we eat immediately ends up in a distended stomach.
There are ways we can use foods to help with the food stagnation. Begin by avoiding cold and raw foods such as citrus fruits and salads. Cut down on dairy products, and of course cut down or out on the sweet and fatty foods (such as Christmas pudding and brandy butter!). Spread your meals over three to five times a day with smaller portions. Eat most of your food earlier in the day and slow down your eating as the day wears on. Try to chew your food more, don’t leave your digestion to do all the breaking down of the food. Eat with little distractions around such as television as this can block the qi and exacerbate the food stagnation. Never eat when you are emotional, as this disrupts the smooth flow of the food through your system. Allow your emotions to settle first.
Good digestive drinks include aniseed, caraway seeds and ginger. Good foods to eat are barley, carrots, coriander, fennel, vinegar, white cabbage, millet chili and ginger.
Below is a recipe of a soup that I make whenever I have over indulged in heavy fatty meals. You will find the benefits of each of the ingredients at the end of the page.
Soup Recipe for when we have overindulged.
1/2 cup barley
1/2 tsp chili (to taste – I have a chili phobic husband, so you may want to use more)
1″ of fresh ginger
6 cups of chicken stock
1 brown onion
3 garlic cloves
2 celery sticks (keep leaves aside)
1 tin of organic crushed tomatoes.
Olive oil to cook with.
celery: cools the stomach and loosens qi stagnation.
parsnip: balances the stomach, intestines and lung.
tomato: cools and cleans the blood and strengthens the stomach.
zucchini: cools stomach and liver heat.
olive oil: moistening.