Food Remedies for Various Conditions

BROCCOLI
Image by whologwhy via Flickr

 Hippocrates said, “Let food be your medicine.”  Similar things have been said in Ayurveda and in Chinese medicine.  Food can balance your immune system, provide seasonal relief (think watermelons in the heat of summer) and can even provide specific cures or extra help when you are treating diseases with herbs or medications.  The chart below shows specific effects of many common foods. 

I would caution however that the cause of problems needs to be considered as well as its energetics:  a hot bacterial diarrhea should be treated differently than a chronic cold diarrhea that comes early in the morning and has undigested food in it.  Foods should generally be eaten in season and either locally or from regions where the current weather is similar.  And consider your constitution: if you run hot, choose a more cooling food.  If you run cold, choose a protein-based food cure, or warm it up with herbs like cinnamon or ginger.  If you want to lose a few pounds or tend towards constipation, figs may help but if you have blood sugar problems, they may be too sweet.  If you tend towards hypothyroid, make sure your cabbage family foods are cooked.  And if the home remedy doesn’t work, call in a professional who can diagnose and guide you towards a more targeted protocol of diet, herbs and medication.

Foods that Can Treat Various Conditions

    Apples
Protects your heart
Prevents constipation
Blocks diarrhea
Improves lung capacity
Cushions joints
Apricots
Combats cancer
Controls blood pressure
Saves your eyesight
Shields against Alzheimer’s
Slows aging process
Artichokes
Aids digestion
Lowers cholesterol
Protects your heart
Stabilizes blood sugar
Guards against liver disease
Avocados
Battles diabetes
Lowers cholesterol
Helps stops strokes
Controls blood pressure
Smoothes skin
Bananas
Protects your heart
Quiets a cough
Strengthens bones
Controls blood pressure
Blocks diarrhea
Beans
Prevents constipation
Helps hemorrhoids
Lowers cholesterol
Combats cancer
Stabilizes blood sugar
Beets
Controls blood pressure
Combats cancer
Strengthens bones
Protects your heart
Aids weight loss
Blueberries
Combats cancer
Protects your heart
Stabilizes blood sugar
Boosts memory
Prevents constipation
Broccoli (cooked)
Strengthens bones
Saves eyesight
Combats cancer
Protects your heart
Controls blood pressure
Cabbage (cooked)
Combats cancer
Prevents constipation
Promotes weight loss
Protects your heart
Helps hemorrhoids
Cantaloupe
Saves eyesight
Controls blood pressure
Lowers cholesterol
Combats cancer
Supports immune system
Carrots
Saves eyesight
Protects your heart
Prevents constipation
Combats cancer
Promotes weight loss
Cauliflower
Protects against Prostate Cancer
Combats B reast Cancer
Strengthens bones
Banishes bruises
Guards against heart disease
Cherries
Protects your heart
Combats Cancer
Ends insomnia
Slows aging process
Shields against Alzheimer’s
Chestnuts
Promotes weight loss
Protects your heart
Lowers cholesterol
Combats Cancer
Controls blood pressure
Chili peppers
Aids digestion
Soothes sore throat
Clears sinuses
Combats Cancer
Boosts immune system
Sprinkle into wounds
Figs
Promotes weight loss
Helps stops strokes
Lowers cholesterol
Combats Cancer
Controls blood pressure
Fish
Protects your heart
Boosts memory
Protects your heart
Combats Cancer
Supports immune system
Flax
Aids digestion
Battles diabetes
Protects your heart
Improves mental health
Boosts immune system
Garlic
Lowers cholesterol
Controls blood pressure
Combats cancer
Kills bacteria
Fights fungus
Grapefruit
Protects against heart attacks
Promotes Weight loss
Helps stops strokes
Combats Prostate Cancer
Lowers cholesterol
Grapes
Saves eyesight
Conquers kidney stones
Combats cancer
Enhances blood flow
Protects your heart
Green tea
Combats cancer
Protects your heart
Helps stops strokes
Promotes Weight loss
Kills bacteria
Honey
Heals wounds
Aids digestion
Guards against ulcers
Increases energy
Fights allergies
Lemons
Combats cancer
Protects your heart
Controls blood pressure
Smooths skin
Stops scurvy
Limes
Combats cancer
Protects your heart
Controls blood pressure
Smooths skin
Stops scurvy
Mangoes
Combats cancer
Boosts memory
Regulates thyroid
Aids digestion especially if pickled
Shields against Alzheimer’s
Mushrooms
Controls blood pressure
Lowers cholesterol
Kills bacteria
Combats cancer if long cooked,  esp reishi or shitaki
Strengthens bones if dried gill side up in sun
Cook well
Oats
Lowers cholesterol
Combats cancer
Battles diabetes
Prevents constipation
Smooths skin
Olive oil
Protects your heart
Promotes Weight loss
Combats cancer
Battles diabetes
Smooths skin
Onions
Reduce risk of heart attack
Combats cancer
Kills bacteria
Lowers cholesterol
Fights fungus
Oranges
Supports immune systems
Combats cancer
Protects your heart
Straightens respiration
Peaches
Prevents constipation
Combats cancer
Helps stops strokes
Aids digestion
Helps hemorrhoids
Peanuts
Protects against heart disease
Promotes Weight loss
Combats Prostate Cancer
Lowers cholesterol
Aggravates 
Diverticulitis Allergenic
Pineapple
Strengthens bones
Relieves colds
Aids digestion
Dissolves warts
Blocks diarrhea
Prunes
Slows aging process
Prevents constipation
Boosts memory
Lowers cholesterol
Protects against heart disease
Rice
Protects your heart
Battles diabetes
Conquers kidney stones
Combats cancer
Helps stops strokes
Strawberries
Combats cancer
Protects your heart
Boosts memory
Calms stress
 Avoid pesticides
Sweet potatoes
Saves your eyesight
Lifts mood
Combats cancer
Strengthens bones
Tomatoes
Protects prostate
Combats cancer
Lowers cholesterol
Protects your heart
Walnuts
Lowers cholesterol
Combats cancer
Boosts memory
Lifts mood
Protects against heart disease
Water
Promotes Weight loss
Combats cancer
Conquers kidney stones
Smooths skin
 Remember minerals too!
Watermelon
Protects prostate
Promotes Weight loss
Lowers cholesterol
Helps stops strokes
Controls blood pressure
Wheat germ
Combats Colon Cancer
Prevents constipation
Lowers cholesterol
Helps stops strokes
Improves digestion but watch for lectin and gluten allergies
Wheat bran
Combats Colon Cancer
Prevents constipation
Lowers cholesterol
Helps stops strokes
Improves digestion
Yogurt
Guards against ulcers
Strengthens bones
Lowers cholesterol
Supports immune systems
Aids digestion

(Chart in public domain, with changes)

The above list is not exhaustive of course.  Pears, especially baked, are good for lung qi. A few doses of live blue cheese is an exceptional probiotic that survives stomach acid.   In Chinese medicine special chickens with black bones are used for soup for the aged (and a few sticks of astragalus may be added for energy.)  Kudzu root may be stewed for neck pain.  Chicken soup with angelica (dong quai) may be used to build blood after giving birth.  In Ayurveda, milk is used for a number of conditions (with and without turmeric.)  Your overall balance of food in terms of hot, cold, bitter, sweet, bland, pungent or salty is important, as is your ability, determined by lifestyle and genetics to use such foods.

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