Raw Food and Traditional Chinese Medicine

An objection some people have to raw food is “According to Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), all raw food is cold and damp and will cause spleen chi deficiency”. Now there are various answers to that, but a friend of mine who is studying TCM has decided to do a study to find out if that is true or not. The study involves having a Chinese Doctor examine the tongue and pulse, two techniques used in TCM of a sample of raw food eaters compared to a sample of non-raw eaters

So yesterday, a Chinese Doctor looked at my tongue and checked my pulse. The way they check the pulse is not like a Western doctor would, they are not counting the beats per minute, they are looking at 30 (I think) different aspects. So the result was, tongue normal, pulse very slightly “slippery”. According to my friend doing the study, a “slippery pulse” could be an indicator of spleen chi deficiency, but with me it was minor and my tongue was normal, so  it seems I am ok. There is still another part of the study which is a questionnaire which will check if I have any other symptoms, I’ll let you know when I have the results of that.

When the study is complete this will hopefully give a better answer to the objection. (Apart from all the healthy people who have been following a raw food diet for many years!)

3 thoughts on “Raw Food and Traditional Chinese Medicine

  1. I have been raw for over 10 years. I get my tongue checked by a Naturopath and Acupuncturist, and it is always quite good. I do prefer hot weather but live in cooler New England throughout the year. I would be interested in your test results. I believe warming foods, building digestive fire by exercise, warm soups, dried heavier and dense foods in the colder part of the year, work fine. Any thoughts? The test you are doing is really great but even more important for people in colder locations since hot locations have natural warm and hot air and natural sun energy heat all the time.

  2. I am a TCM practitioner, and i can tell you that it is true, by default most raw vegetables and greens and fruit are classed as cold and dampness producing in the Chinese Medicine pharmacopeia. There are some exceptions, such as raw chiles, which are hot and drying, and others.
    In human beings there are also a wide range of differences. For some who have naturally occurring dry and hot constitutions, with a strong digestion and high metabolism, a raw food diet will potentially have positive effects. Others who have very cold and damp constitutions with poor digestion will probably suffer more on a raw food diet.

  3. Hey J.Torgier! Do you happen to know any TCM practioners you would recommend in the Seattle area for those of us interested in applying the Chinese Medicine pharmacopeia to eating habits?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.