Blood is a truly amazing substance that we rarely take time to appreciate. This specialized fluid in our body is comprised of plasma and cells. It circulates around the entire body through 100,000 miles of vessels, interfacing with every tissue and supplying it with essential nutrients such as oxygen, glucose, amino acids, fatty acids, vitamins and hormones.
Blood also carries away cellular waste along its magnificent current, depositing it in the right places for removal. Blood protects us from disease, carrying an army of white blood cells to fight any foreign invader.
From the Chinese medical perspective, blood also serves the purpose of moistening and nourishing every body tissue. It especially nourishes eyes and skin, and is essential for muscle strength and cutaneous sensation. When deficient, it can result in dry skin and hair, muscle weakness, poor vision, numbness, as well as vertigo or tinnitus.
In TCM theory, blood is especially important for mental health and optimal sleep. When blood is in adequate supply and excellent quality, one feels mentally clear, able to focus and has a calm, grounded spirit that falls and stays asleep easily.
We also know that from both western medical and TCM perspectives, blood is essential in women’s health and fertility. Blood enhances endometrial lining and nourishes follicles. In TCM practice, we assess the quality and quantity of blood to treat many aspects of women’s health from painful periods, migraines, pre-eclampsia to infertility.
Chinese medicine foods that nourish Blood:
Nettles, Gou Qi berries, Black sesame seeds, wheat grass
Raspberries and blackberries, pears and persimmons
Kelp and all seaweeds, dark leafy greens, , cilantro,
Millet, black beans and kidney beans.
Lamb, beef, chicken and liver. Find my fav liver pate recipe here.
Mussels and oysters.