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Exploring Herbal Teas and Traditional Chinese Medicine

Popularity 8Viewed 1740 times 2014-4-23 13:33 |System category:Life| Chinese, medicine, traditional, balance, health

Before coming to Shanghai, I've never cared much for Traditional Chinese Medicine. Previous experiences have included acupuncture and medicine in my hometown for my sensitive skin or drinking medicinal soup my mother makes. I’ve passed by Chinese medicine shops in Richmond (a Chinese populated region in Vancouver, Canada), but never really had much interest in what they do or what they are for. The various types of ingredients and their weird looking appearances are enough to intimidate anyone with little to no background knowledge of their uses.

Lately, ever since I’ve been in Shanghai, I have not been eating well because I have been eating out two times a day for the past two months in restaurants or at the school cafeteria. My dormitory does not provide a kitchen, not even a fridge or a microwave. The food I’m used to making at home usually include fresh salad with chicken breast and quinoa or rice with steamed vegetables and baked salmon. I barely use any oil, and use salt and soy sauce sparingly.  Chinese foods in restaurants are typically really oily and salty and sometimes spicy. As a result, my skin has been acting up and my energy levels are really low. It also doesn’t help that I exercise less here as well.

And so, since I’m in China, I thought to myself, why not explore Traditional Chinese Medicine/Herbs and find a way to balance myself? I started asking my mother questions about the types of ingredients I should be consuming if I were to regain balance.

(Please note that I’ve only started exploring Chinese medicine/herbs and definitely not an expert, also, I am at a loss for words in describing some of the things in English)

Eating spicy or fried food can cause too much “Internal Heat”. It is good to cleanse your body by ingesting/drinking things with Chrysanthemum in it.

Chrysanthemum flowers in a tea mix packet

These “cool” teas are also good for cleaning internal heat.

I’m thinking of seeing a Traditional Chinese doctor here in Shanghai for my skin, and I’m wondering if anyone would recommend a good place; it would be greatly appreciated 

(Opinions of the writer in this blog don't represent those of China Daily.)




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Comment Comment (9 comments)

Reply Report 财神 2014-4-23 18:32
herbel is best for health, a also support it.
Reply Report ColinSpeakman 2014-4-23 22:09
There seems to be some different TCM for every ailment. So always interested to know what works for what from proven stories!
Reply Report seanboyce88 2014-4-24 12:21
I love Tim Minchins quote on this.
"Do you know what they call alternative medicine that works?....medicine" "Alternative medicine has either been proven to not work or not been proven to work" :p

I am still not convinced by Chinese medicine, tried it a few times and had no effect on me whatsoever
Reply Report HailChina! 2014-4-24 21:55
In my opinion western medicine that is 'proven' is not at all the final word and the west is yet to fully understand or appreciate traditional Chinese medicine. The west is full of corporations like Pfizer that 'prove' a product 'works' by testing autistic mice with drugs designed to treat depression.. Now I have no idea how they tell the difference between an autistic mouse and a depressed mouse but in am far from convinced that this type of nonsense is 'scientific'. I do not see western medicine as the final word on anything.

I think it is a good idea to explore traditional Chinese medicine. Especially if you are feeling down. It would be interesting if nothing else.
Reply Report 山点水 2014-4-24 22:39
Hi jsylam,"Internal Heat" is very common for people.I always have such probloms.Don't worry.Just adjust your diet.Eat more vegetables,friuts,drink Chrysanthemum flowers.But I think  the  “cool” teas are not much helpful.Besides,don't eat spicy food,fried food,oily food.That's ok.
Reply Report jsylam 2014-4-24 22:59
山点水: Hi jsylam,"Internal Heat" is very common for people.I always have such probloms.Don't worry.Just adjust your diet.Eat more vegetables,friuts ...
Thanks for the comment and the advice!  Yes I have been trying to eat more vegetables and fruits and less fried food.  I didn't think the cool teas were much help either,  they are just packed with sugar!
Reply Report teamkrejados 2014-4-25 09:53
I can't direct you to anyone in Shanghai but I can give you a 'thumbs up' for trying traditional medicines. Keep us posted, please.
Reply Report objchina 2014-4-26 08:48
I believe in herbal medicines but am yet find any that suited me in China.
Reply Report bookfever 2014-4-26 10:20
I am interested to learn what you find out with TCM.  I have started drinking ginger tea.  I believe it has helped my digestion.  Ginger has always been touted as a healthy food.  And I just love the taste of ginger.  For my skin I use different face moisturizing masks.  I like the one with chamomile that claims to be anti-allergy.  I think the brand is MG.

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Jessica is a Chinese language student and has been staying in Shanghai since February 2014.


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