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Blood Nourishing Foods For Blood Deficiency : Chinese Medicine Approach 

 

The blood is one of the most essential components of the human body, as it helps to build and repair tissue, transport nutrients, and oxygen, and fight off germs and infections. Your blood nourishes your body in many ways, but when it’s deficient in nourishment, the nutrients can’t get to where they need to go as quickly or effectively as they should.

Blood deficiency often goes unnoticed until an extreme condition presents itself, such as chronic fatigue, anemia that lead to further health complications. To help restore balance and prevent problems, it’s important to eat foods that nourish the blood. So, what are blood building foods? How does one know if they have blood deficiency? This article will go over some foods to include in a blood-friendly diet to help nourish and replenish the blood supply.

Importance of blood according to Chinese Medicine 

According to traditional Chinese medicine (TCM), blood, or xue, is considered the vital substance. TCM believes that blood is the denser form of one’s Qi and is inseparable from Qi because the Qi gives movement to one’s blood. Blood nourishes the organs and produces a Yin and Yang relationship with Qi. Qi is Yang in nature, while blood is a Yin element. Qi moves the blood to where it is needed throughout the body.

 

Blood Stagnation

Stagnant blood occurs when blood flows too slowly or is not flowing at all. Blood stagnation can be caused by a variety of factors, including stress, injury, poor diet, or a sedentary lifestyle.

TCM, many organs in the body are supplied with blood through channels known as meridians. Therefore, if the body’s meridian system is blocked, stagnant blood may build up in certain areas, causing pain and inflammation.

 

Blood Deficiency

According to Chinese Medicine, blood deficiency can be caused by a chronic illness or stress which will weaken the body’s ability to fight illness. Other causes of blood deficiency may be nutrient deficiencies, drug-induced nutrient depletions, or genetics.

A blood deficiency impairs the liver’s ability to regulate blood flow, which can result in symptoms such as dizziness and frequent headaches. TCM states blood deficiency is not caused by an actual decrease in volume of blood but refers to a functional loss. This means all normal bodily fluids are in proper working order, but the body’s blood flow system isn’t processing nutrients properly.

In addressing patients with blood deficiency symptoms, doctors often prescribe iron supplements or tonics designed to treat iron deficiency anemia along with foods rich in iron such as red meat or liver. If symptoms of blood deficiency are left untreated for a long time, it can manifest into conditions like anemia and leukopenia; luckily, nourishing the blood may help keep these conditions from occurring.

A person with blood deficiency will typically look pale and feel weak. Other common symptoms are:

  • Fatigue
  • Irritability
  • Forgetfulness
  • Headaches
  • Frequently cold
  • Numbness or tingling in the hands and feet
  • Dizziness
  • Brain fog
  • Depression
  • Anxiety
  • Mood Swings
  • Heart palpitations
  • Sleep difficulties
  • Dry skin
  • Brittle nails
  • Easily bruised
  • Chronic muscle fatigue
  • Pale tongue

Blood Nourishing Diet

A blood nourishing diet should focus on green leafy matter like seaweed, for example. Leafy greens should comprise approximately 40% of one’s diet, with 10% going toward fruits, 30% toward animal proteins, and 20% to complex carbohydrates such as root vegetables and beans.

 

There are several foods that can help improve blood circulation including tomatoes (vitamin A), , pineapples (beta-carotene), broccoli (protein), and radishes (folic acid). A person should avoid or reduce intake of foods high in saturated fats including dairy products like cheese, butter, or cream, as well as excessively fatty cuts of meat.

 

• Leafy greens: Kale, spinach, romaine lettuce and collard greens all contain significant amounts of iron as well as other nutrients such as vitamins A & C that can improve blood quality. You’ll want to eat a lot of these during a period where you’re looking to improve your energy levels.

 

• Eggs: Eggs are great for nourishing blood because they contain lecithin and choline, which help remove toxins. Eggs are also high in B vitamins and minerals like iron, which is important for hemoglobin synthesis. A deficiency in iron can cause anemia. Blood deficiency symptoms include dizziness, lethargy, loss of appetite, pale skin, and palpitations.

 

• Red Meat: Meat is a great way to build your blood. Meat also has plenty of protein, zinc, selenium, and B vitamins.Iron deficiency may be less common in people who eat meat, poultry, and fish on a daily basis, according to research.

 

• Tofu: Tofu offers a great source of iron, just A half-cup (126-gram) serving contains 3.4 mg of iron. It can help prevent anemia.  A study conducted in China showed that tofu helped lower the risk of anemia among adults.

 

• Seafood: Iron is abundant in all shellfish, but clams, oysters, and mussels are particularly rich. Algae, seaweed, spirulina, chlorella, and kelp are recommended as blood nourishing foods. 

 

• Beans and lentils: beans, lentils, chickpeas, peas, and soybeans are all great source of iron for blood deficiency. They also contain folate, magnesium, potassium and are also very high in soluble fiber, which can increase feelings of fullness and reduce calorie intake. 

 

Foods to Avoid

Avoid excessive salt, sugar, and other additives; stick to organic foods. Other foods to avoid are:

  • High doses of Vitamin C
  • Nuts, butters in excess
  • Bitter, salty, or sour foods
  • Hot foods
  • Refined sugars
  • Limited dairy intake

TCM nutrition is an ancient but expanding discipline. Its main goal is to use food as a way to attain harmony and balance within the body. There are many foods that are known as nourishing to blood, which can help people with low blood. When added to a diet with a variety of organic vegetables and fruits, these foods can boost a person’s energy levels and restore Qi balance throughout the blood.

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* These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This information is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease. We can’t guarantee the treatment result, as the symptoms of conditions are unpredictable and vary greatly from person to person. The treatment length and recovery time also varies for individual. Please visit our consultation page where a specialists will discuss your care and provide a consultation, and the treatment will be designed to meet your individual needs.

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