My good friend, Veronika, who I met in Chengdu recommended I see this Traditional Chinese Medicine Doctor named Adam.
I thought about it for a month as I was not sure if I had any health problems worth going to him for. So I decided to message him about a general health checkup and possibly tackling my digestion, rosacea and cold hands and feet. He told me to come in to see him, so I booked an appointment.
His office was lovely and I was served a nice hot tea when I sat down. Adam, is from Australia and has been in the traditional medicine field for over 20 years. He has studied numerous traditional medicine systems and combines the knowledge from many of them to cater to his clients.
We talked about what I wanted to fix and some of what my typical diet is like. I learned a lot of really interesting facts. For example, most westerners try to maintain their traditional diet overseas in countries with different climates than back home and that is actually one of the worst things you can do for your body. It is much better and easier on the body to eat more of the local food than to rely on the foods from home, because the longer you are overoverseas, problems will start to appear.
This advice made sense to me and he told me to try different foods and see what I like. Start to incorporate new things slowly and the rest is moderation. He told me he knew what body type I was when I described my symptoms before he took my pulse and checked my tongue. The pulse is checked on both wrists and I believe it is connected to different organs. He told me I was a phlegm (water) body type and I am prone to dampness in the body. Our bodies are a mix of different elements, but one of them is the dominant one.
He said all of my bad habits go against what I should be doing for my body type which is the reason I have a slow digestion and can be constipated for days. I also found out that is why I am drawn to overeating and have a large sweet tooth. This puts my body out of whack.
So for my first round of treatment the two most important things were to chew each mouthful of food 32 times (or another number of my choosing). And if I did that I would naturally do number two, eat less. My other job was to boil the tea I was given and add ginger to it. My job is to have it at night and in the morning on an empty stomach, or not when I am eating.
The tea was rather pleasant for me as I thought it tasted similar to one of my favorite drinks from Korea, 쌍화골드, which was a hot drink I would have when I was feeling sick.
There were other parts to follow as well:
Instead of sweets try snacking on dry fruit.
Have coffee with food or after eating (not on an empty stomach). No more than 2 cups per day.
Cut back or eliminate wheat for two weeks.
Drink ginger tea (morning, before meals) this will help will bloating, feeling gassy, or stomach pain.
Keep a food diary and note what I eat and how I feel after eating it.
I’ll let you know how I did in Part 2!