6 common facts about Ayurveda and TCM

Ayurveda has a history of more than 5,000 years, originated in the Indus Valley region of India. First, it was passed orally from family to family and generation to generation. Later it was recorded in the ancient Vedic books. The knowledge was spread along the silk road and influenced Chinese medicine.

Traditional Chinese Medicine or TCM is originated in China. As the origin of history got lost, written records are available from 2,000 years ago. Acupuncture points history can be followed way back to Stone Age.

As you can see – there must be some similarities between Ayurveda and the ancient way of TCM. Both systems are holistic for sure and see the human as a whole. Let´s have a closer look!

1.) Connections to the tongue

Ayurveda and TCM both use tongue diagnosis. In TCM the tongue is a map to our organs. In Ayurveda, we also use cracks, color, coat of the tongue to have a closer look at the imbalances of our patients. TCM also recommends to brush the tongue and avoid certain drinks or food before having a tongue diagnosis. 

2.) The theory of elements 

Here is another common thing – TCM is separating the body in 5 elements. Ayurvedic theory is separating the body into 5 elements as well. In Ayurveda, we call it Vata (Ether & Air), Pitta (Fire & Water), Kapha (Earth & Water). In TCM it is Wood, Fire, Earth, Metal, and Water. 

And both systems have a similar way to find those elements in the human body. Here is a TCM description: 

  1. Solid structures such as bones, flesh, skin, tissue, and hair represent earth form.
  2. Water forms saliva, urine, semen, blood, and sweat.
  3. Fire forms hunger, thirst, and sleep.
  4. Air takes care of breathing like expansion, contraction, and suppression.
  5. Space takes care of physical attraction and fear.

3.) Pulse Diagnose 

Both Ayurveda and TCM use Pulse diagnose to find imbalances. 

Ayurveda describes the Doshas in our Pulses, while TCM describes 29 different Pulses in the human body. The goal is the same: to have a closer look at the individual and its imbalances to find a unique treatment. 

4.) The causes of illness

In TCM the evils are external in origin but can penetrate deeply into the body, as they do in Ayurveda.

The Six Evils are:

  • Wind
  • Cold
  • Damp
  • Heat
  • Summer Heat
  • Dryness

In Ayurveda Dryness and Wind and everything that is aggravating Vata is the root of 60% of all illnesses. 30% are related to Pitta Dosha and just 10% can be found related to Kapha Dosha. 

5.) Tastes and properties 

TCM describes different tastes in herbs and nutrition as well. Sweet, Spicy, Bitter, Sour, Salty, Astringent and Bland. In Ayurveda, we describe Sweet, Sour, Salty, Pungent, Bitter and Astringent. 

6.) Dietary and Nutritional guidelines 

Just have a look at the common TCM guidelines for eating habits and what should be avoided:

General Eating Habits   

  •   Eat in a calm and relaxed atmosphere and do not rush your meal
  •  Avoid intense interactions at mealtime, including television and reading
  •  Chewing food thoroughly supports spleen qi
  •  Don’t eat meals late at night
  • Avoid overconsumption and excessive fasting

  Avoid:

  •  Raw, cold food, and iced beverages
  •  Excessive dairy
  •  Oily, greasy, and fried foods
  •  Refined sugar and limit overly sweet foods like fruit
  •  Refined carbohydrates
  •  Excessive alcohol intake
  •  Excessive meat consumption

I am sure you can find here all the nutrition facts, you already read about Ayurvedic nutrition!

What do you think? What do you prefer? What do you practice? I would like to read some of your personal experiences in the comment section below! 

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Have a beautiful new week & lovely greetings, 

Ayurvedic Breakfast – let´s get warm, Vata peeps!

Unique, delicious and healthy – we teach you how to start your day powerful and satisfied! Tips, facts and recipes for the most important meal of the day!

Could this be your new morning Routine?

According to Ayurveda, breakfast is the most important meal of the day. To activate your agni, your digestive fire, your body needs food. Without any breakfast, our body will respond quickly to stress, our blood sugar level is low, concentration won´t come easy and our metabolism need more time to “start.” We will be tired quickly and have binge eating habits for lunch or cravings for sugar and sweets.

Eat Right for your Mind-Body-Type

The important point is to eat right for your Mind-Body-Type, your Dosha. The needs of your body for your diet are very unique! Vata is all about air and aether, you remember that it is mobile, rough and dry? And that we should eat the opposite? Great. This week we start with breakfast ideas for Vata Dosha. This Dosha needs food for grounding, food that is moisture, nourishing and warming!

You will help your unique Body type to activate your agni, breaking down the nutrients, feel grounded but energized and more healthy. If you never tried this before, I highly recommend a few weeks of Ayurvedic breakfast – the effects are there after a few days. Promised!

All About the ingredients

Porridge in every variety is perfect here – it is simple to prepare, it got minerals, protein, carbs and fibers to get your digestion going! But it don´t have to be just oats. You can use Quinoa (perfect for Vata because high in protein), rice (can be also prepared sweet with plant milk) and Tigernuts! Toppings like berries (also warm), banana, cinnamon, cocoa nibs, agave juice or maple syrup are grounding and calming your Dosha. Prepare your breakfast in the evening, when you run out of time in the evening. So you can just warm it up quickly and put on some mouth watering toppings!

Get inspired by this easy and mouthwatering Vata porridge recipe:

“Strawberry-fields-forever” Porridge

Ingredients:

½ cup of gluten-free oats

2 cups of plant based milk

1 pinch of salt

½ teaspoon of cardamom

½ teaspoon of cinnamon

½ teaspoon of sesame oil

Toppings:

1 Cup of fresh or frozen strawberries

1 Hand full of blueberries

1 teaspoon of chia seeds

A handful of almonds, raw

1 tablespoon of maple syrup

Here we go:

  1. Heat the sesame oil in a small pot and add the spices there. Enjoy the smell and add plant milk of choice. When it is slightly heated, you can put your oats into the milk. I always use a fist full of oats, cause that is the size of my stomach. Start it slowly in the morning and don´t over eat it! Let simmer on a medium heat and stir well. Add the salt.
  2. In the meanwhile, you need another small pan or pot. Chop your strawberries into halfs and start to heat them slowly with the blueberries and the maple syrup on medium heat. (Agave Juice works also well!)
  3. The texture of the Porridge should be creamy and not too sticky, if needed, add a bit more plant milk. Let simmer for 5 minutes.
  4. Put in a bowl and add the toppings: Start with the berries and the delicious juice, add the chias and the almonds.
  5. I had warm cocoa also this morning, spiced up with cinnamon and cardamom as well! Enjoy!

Doesn´t this sound perfectly to start your day with? Here are some pro-hacks to save time in the morning:

  • Prepare oats and other grains overnight, your porridge will be much creamier and also faster done!
  • Chop your fruits in the evening and add them in a small bowl into your fridge!
  • Wake up 15 minutes earlier to find time to prepare and eat a Moment in silence before you leave the house.
  • Go seasonal with your toppings to find more variety! The Farmers market can inspire you!
  • Try to drink a warm water in the morning first – 30 Minute before you have breakfast. I do this always in the bathroom when I prepare myself for the day.

Can´t wait to share with you some amazing Pitta facts and recipe next Sunday! We will also talk About Kapha and all mixed types! And what about a chart on ingredients for the Doshas? I dive myself now in endless creativity and productivity and wishing everyone a Beautiful start into the new week! Namaste!

Detox…and what comes after?!

Ayurvedic diet for April – the perfect add on after your Detox!

Spring is a season where the nature is all about cleansing and creating new life.

The shift from January to May is a Kapha season, we come from the cold and dry Vata season to the nourishing, rich and watery Kapha season. In April the temperatures are getting warmer, the trees and flowers are starting to bloom. For our body it is just the right time to Detox and also to lose some weight if you want to. Our metabolism got the quality to burn the fat from the Winter months now more effective!

But as in Kapha season, the Dosha can be easily aggravated now. In Germany we call it the “Spring tiredness” – guess where it does come from?

Start to add turmeric to your dishes and add Golden Milk into your days. Turmeric is a blood-mover and increases the whole metabolism. Bitter herbs and spices are now the perfect way to support our body. They will support your liver by excess fats and clean your blood. Spices like cardamom and ginger are having similar effects! Green leaves like sesame leaves, dandelion, rucola are bitter as well and can be added to your daily diet. Sesame leaves are awesome for rice dishes and curries. You can wrap rice and veggies into them! (You can find them normally in asian stores).

Neem face masks can help to detox your skin, which could be irritated during the changing temperatures with pimples, red spots. Use a face mask three times a week when your skin is going crazy now! If your face is just too dry, try a mix with rose water and healing earth, without the neem.

For substitutes you could add now Triphala and Trikatu – Trikatu is balancing Kapha and Triphala helps the body to detox.

Avoid heavy, oily, sweet and salty food and dishes. Try to focus more on what is growing seasonal now. Enough with the facts! Let’s get to THE FOOD and fruits you should focus on now – and of course, what each Dosha can do to stay balanced!

Kapha Dosha and the month of April

This Dosha is in it´s element, but also needs to focus on detoxing to get the mucus out of the body. During the rising humidity your Dosha can be aggravated easily. Pungent food and herbs will help you to stay in balance. Jala Neti to clean your nose every evening, Tongue scraping in the morning, add dry brushes massages into your routine now! Breathing techniques like Kapalabhati will be a lifesaver for you!

Vata Dosha and the month of April

Vata Dosha peeps are the happiest now! The cold weather is over, the sun comes out again…Vata Dosha need to stay grounded during diet and what is even more important – a daily routine! Stay nourished with Self-Massages in the evening and use Vata oil. Love your hair and scalp – treat them with a vitalizing hair oil once or twice a week. This will also help to stay grounded. As the energy level raises and you will find yourself in a workaholic mode, change your fitness and Yoga practice into gentle and muscle stabilizing. Alternate nostril breathing and meditation instead of crazy activism will help you to stay in balance.

Pitta Dosha and the month of April

Pitta Dosha people tends to have a sensitive liver which can lead to the affection of allergies. Everything is blooming now. So if you experience allergies according to the season – know that you can help you a lot with Ayurveda! Focus on Liver cleansing foods and herbs, which are the bitter ones. Help yourself with Jala Neti in the evening and morning when your nose is running, tongue scraping is also a daily morning practice that helps to reduce the aggravating toxins. If your feel overheated already, cool yourself down with massages with coconut oil and try oil pulling after tongue scraping with that.  

What to eat in April

Roots, Buckwheat and Tempeh – perfect example to combine the recommendations for this month! 🙂

What grows now naturally is Asparagus – take the green one, beets like beetroot and may root. Fermented food is perfect – try Kombucha, Kimchi and Sour cabbage. Grapefruits are awesome, if available eat papaya because of it´s cleansing benefits, also lemons, tangerines, cherries, oranges! The fruits should be not too sweet. Salads, legumes, sprouts combined with carbs like Buckwheat can be easily prepared and spiced with cinnamon, cayenne, ginger, pepper. (Try my Pho recipe and add lemons on top!).

During the day, fennel tea or Yogi Tea with coriander and cumin are helping you to don’t feel bloated while changing your diet.

Try to combine your specific Dosha diet with seasonal herbs, fruits and legumes. It is not as complicated – you just switch some ingredients which we mostly do naturally – cravings for Asparagus because it is seasonal, for example.

When you have still cravings for sugar, try raw chocolate! They even have some amazing ingredients and superfoods and dark cocoa is also a bit bitter! 😉

  • Avoid heavy, sweet, oily, salty food
  • Go with green leafy food and herbs which are bitter
  • Add a daily routine compared to your Dosha to stay grounded or help yourself with allergies or sluggishness
  • Focus on seasonal food and compare them to your Dosha specific diet
  • Soak up the sun a lot!

Find you here tomorrow for an Interview with an inspiring friend of mine! She is a Holistic Nutrionist and Wellness Practitioner and is inspiring with vegan and plant based recipes and so much more!

Namaste and a beautiful evening to you!