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Medical diet might be a way to change immunology and stop seasonal allergy

As a Chinese herbalist and acupuncturist with the background of phyto-chemistry, I know it’s very hard to help people who suffered seasonal allergy get rid of this problem. I was always impressed by the power of a Chinese herbal medicine—- astragalus. The Chinese name is “Huang Qi”.

 

astragalus root

Astragalus Root

Recently, this herb attracted much of my attention from my own practice and from my friend’s experience. My friend’s child has the autoimmune problem.  He asked for my opinion on medical diet. Because it will be used for child, safety is the primary concern. I recommended him to use  astragalus, glossy privet fruit, black bean and Chinese jujube, and cook with a black-bone chicken. All these ingredients are safe and the taste is not terrible. My friend started cooking the dish for his son, but because the child doesn’t want to see all these herbs, especially black chicken meat, he only gave his son the soap, and he ate the solid parts (e.g. beans, meat). Very surprising result showed up several months later, his son grew many healthy and dark hair.

 

He himself surprised me and his family even more. We are very close friends as his wife and I both love plants and flowers very much.  I know that every spring, he suffers from severe allergies due to flower pollen, especially the dogwood flower. Almost start from later February or early March, through the whole spring, they don’t dare to open their windows.

But miraculous things happened this spring, since he starts taking medical diet this January, he has had no allergy symptoms, such as running nose, tears or sneeze. He used to take antihistamine medicine during the whole spring season. But this spring, no symptoms at all. They can open windows without the help of any antihistamine medicine.

I am always interested in medical diet and think it is very important because it’s part of our daily activity. I know our immune system can be improved. But I’ve never thought that it can be so dramatically changed by medical diet, nor did I know that it can help improve such a common disease like seasonal allergy.

Another example is about my husband, who is disabled due to chemical toxins (strong chemicals affected his immune system). The past few years, I give him simple medical diet different seasons. The main ingredient is astragalus. I do say I have seen his consistent improvement. He can resume swimming since last winter. So this limited experience made me recalled a Chinese idiom  Four ounces yields 1000 catties, which means a small force thing can yield huge benefit. I think that in a lot of cases, immune system works just like this, a little bit of something can trigger and make a huge difference.

Here is the additional information that I found in the PubMed—- a 1991 article by Li XY from Shanghai Institute of Material Medical. They have already made a conclusion about that: “Traditional Chinese medicine always pays close attention to the strengthening of the patient’s general resistance against illness, there are many Chinese herbs used for thousands of years are considered as tonics.” And astragalus in Chinese medicine is the main herb for tonic “Qi”, and much safer than ginseng. Astragalus has almost no big side effect. From phyto-chemistry aspect, astrigulus has the “excellent immunomodulating agents, such as polysaccharides or saponins (Zhao XZ, 1992)”, they can stimulate T lymphocyte proliferation, maybe that’s why they can strengthen body’s immune system. Other herbs carry this like the Chinese ganoderma, poria cocos, etc. all have beneficial and significant results for immune system of human body.

 

 

Chrysanthemum and Wolfberries Tea: Perfect Tea for Dry Eyes

If you have dry eyes, either because of long-time use of computer or due to aging and biological change (e.g. post-menopause), I recommend this wolfberries and chrysanthemum tea recipe to you.  It has two simple ingredients and is very easy to make:

 How to make it:

15-20g Wolfberries

How to make Goji tea

Dried Wolfberries aka Goji berries

4-5 pieces of Chrysanthemum (yellow chrysanthemum flower or chrysthemum morifolium ramat)

chrysanthemum

Chrysanthemum

Bring to boil and enjoy!

Why it works:

Wolfberries: TCM doctor Xichun Zhang appraised “wolfberries can make eyes brighter, clear heat of deficiency type, strong bones, remove the back pain, nourish liver and kidney, and would be beneficial for long time use.”

Chrysanthemum: Shizhen Li, world famous Ming botanist and pharmacologist, author of Compendium of Medical Herbs, appraised “Chrysanthemum is able to stop headache and dizzy, improve eyesight and nourish essential fluid.” In addition, chrysanthemum can also help dispel wind heat pathogens and clearing away heat and toxic materials.

Main benefits:

This tea is especially good for people who spend most of their time in front of a computer, and for women who experience menopause hot flashes and irritable dry eyes. I used it successfully in my clinic, for severe cases, I used it with acupuncture.

 

For those who prefer having this recipe in Chinese, here it goes:

枸杞菊花茶:

15-20g枸杞,4-5朵菊花(黄菊花或杭白菊均可),沏茶,可反复用。

功效:于经常面对电脑的年轻人,久用电脑之人眼睛缺水,菊花对眼睛好,也适用于妇女更年期除虚热。

枸杞:中医张锡纯评价“其性善明目,退虚热,壮筋骨,除腰疼,久服有益,此皆滋补肝肾之功”,富含氨基酸

菊花:李时珍评价“止头痛晕眩,明目有神,有滋阴养目之功”,疏散风热,平肝明目,清热解毒.

 

 

Three Berries Juice For Better Blood Circulation

Do you know that the “health secret” of many famous ancient and modern Chinese herbalists is to eat wolfberries (Goji) daily?

Another my favoriate herbal drink containing wolfberries (Goji berries) again, is called Three Berries Juice.  It is great for improving blood circulation, lowering cholesterol, and strengthening the Qi . It is makes a great berry soup or dessert.

Key Ingredients (serves 6-10 days):

1/2 cup dry hawthorn berries (100-125g): Hawthorn berries: promoting blood circulation to remove blood stasis, degrading cholesterol, improve digestion especially for meat.bigstock-Hawthorn-on-wooden-background--39457174

1/2 cup dry Chinese dates or jujube (125-150g):  toning one’s vitality of Qi, nourishing the blood and tranquilizing the spirit.

bigstock-Dried-red-date-or-Chinese-juju-46656139

1/3 cup dry wolfberries (100-125g): Containing a variety of amino acids, nourishing kidney and liver, improving eyesight, moistening and benefiting the lung.

How to make Goji tea

How to make Goji tea

Add 50 grams rock sugar or local honey (if you like it a bit sweeter)

How to make it:

(1) Quick rinse the hawthorn berries and dates; put in 1,500-2,000 ml cold clean water, then soak for half an hour; bring to boil over high heat and simmer the berries for 15-20 minutes until hawthorn berries and dates become soft.

(2) Add wolfberries and mix well. Cook short time until wolfberries change color and become soft.

(3) Taste for sweetness and taste for thickness. If you want to serve as dessert, it needs to be thicker. If you want to drink juice, you can separate the juice and berries. Then both can be eaten.

(4) store the unused portion in refrigerator.

If you are interest in knowing more active ingredients, please contact me.

 

Again, this recipe in Chinese:

三红汤(6-10天用量)

 

山楂100g,大枣150g,枸杞100g,50g冰糖。山楂和大枣沸水煮15到20分钟,直到两者变软,加入枸杞搅匀,继续煮直到枸杞变色并变软,如果想要甜一点的可加冰糖。果肉可食用。要放在冰箱中保存。

功效:

山楂:活血化瘀,降胆固醇,有助肉类消化

大枣:补气,补血,养血安神

枸杞:含有多种氨基酸,滋肾,补肝,明目,润肺