Mung Bean Noodles with Greens and Sesame Sauce – Alice Louey
One aspect of Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) involves food therapy, where different foods have different thermal effects on the body such as heating, cooling and neutral. You can then use these different foods to take care of your own health. For example, according to TCM, there are are skin conditions that may be caused by too much “heat” such as psoriasis, eczema, dermatis, and rosacea. Some people with these skin conditions will then benefit from eating more foods which have a “cooling” influence on the body.
This yummy dish contains “cooling” mung bean noodles, tofu, cucumber and watercress. The addition of slightly “warming” ginger and garlic also help with digestion.
Sesame paste and oil are deeply nourishing. They are packed with protein, magnesium and other nutrients. As well as adding a wonderful depth of flavour to the dish, studies suggest that consistent use of sesame may help in lowering blood pressure, blocking cholesterol production, preventing diabetes and improving plasma glucose in hypersensitive diabetics. (Yale Journal of Biology & Medicine 2006 https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1942178/)
This is a traditional Korean seaweed soup recipe used by women for at least one month after childbirth to boost milk supply and detoxify the blood. It is also part of birthday meals.
The iodine and calcium in the seaweed help new mums recover from the birth faster, and soup provides intense nourishment without straining the digestive system.
Miyeok-guk is part of the traditional postpartum rituals in Korea, and is very similar to traditional practices in China, Japan and other parts of Asia which recognise that postpartum mothers need time and care to recover from a very stressful and draining 10 months. In order to nourish and care for their baby properly they should focus on resting and restore their energy through a nutritious diet.
Traditional Chinese culture tries to use every part of the plant or fruit recognising that they all contribute to our nutrition. Watermelon rind (the white part of the peel) has a bland flavour with a nice crunch -‐ like cucumber or celery. It has cooling properties, so is perfect to add to your salad or stir fry dishes during summer. It contains citrulline, a powerful anti-‐ oxidant, and it converts to arginine, essential for healthy heart, circulatory and immune systems. Watermelon rind is also used for teething babies, as its cooling properties help to soothe their gums, and provides resistance for babies to chew on.
Watermelon peel (the tougher outer green part) is traditionally used to treat heatstroke.
Watermelon rind salad relieves the effects of damp heat, fatigue, sore throat, insomnia, urinary difficulties, and indigestion.