02.06.2015

Chinese medicine black balls

Ensuring snow leopard survival and conserving mountain landscapes by expanding environmental awareness and sharing innovative practices through community stewardship and partnerships. Snow leopards suffer from low natural density, large home ranges, dependence upon prey whose numbers are low or declining, and high vulnerability to poaching and other threats from humans. Human density in snow leopard habitat is among the lowest in the world, but our impacts are pervasive. Poaching and illegal trading in the snow leopard’s exquisite fur and highly valued body parts (used in traditional Asian medicine) is a significant and increasing threat. Although officially protected in all of its range countries, the laws have been rarely enforced due to lack of awareness, insufficient political will to uphold regulations, or a shortage of funds and trained personnel.  You can learn more about steps being taken to help combat poaching on the page about our program in Russia. Identifying and eliminating some of the most common kale pests can go a long way in your kale plant protection program. Aphids – Allow natural predator insects to do as much of the work of controlling these insects as possible. Flea beetles – Good fall cleanup and regular weed removal are your best bets in controlling these insects, which chew tiny holes in the leaves. Starting a kale disease prevention program will help eliminate most diseases of kale in the garden. If you think your kale is infected with a disease, cut back on high-nitrogen fertilizers until you have the problem under control. Fungicides containing copper may help prevent disease infection or slow its progress, but they don’t cure diseases. Now that you know more about protecting your plants from diseases and garden pests affecting kale, you can enjoy a new crop each year without any worries. It’s a cool, rainy June morning in the mountains in Massachusetts and a warm breakfast is on my mind.
Congee as some in the West know it or xifan (??) and zhou (??) in Mandarin, chuk or jook in Cantonese — is the perfect food for mornings. On the dining hall menu each morning – a huge pot of xifan, plain white rice and water, another huge pot of rice porridge with pumpkin or corn added, trays of steamed buns, corn, rice, mixed corn and rice and plain rice buns with meat or preserved veggies inside. At the end of the table were two trays of preserved vegetables – a scary looking pile of oily, unidentifiable fermented vegetables that everyone spooned on top of their xifan or put onto their trays like a side dish.
The softly cooked rice, sometimes left over rice from the night before, is boiled until the grains “open up like flowers” (hua kaile) making them large, soft and easy to digest.[i] It doesn’t take long. Meanwhile I chop up the ginger – about the size of the top of my thumb – and one scallion white and green into slivers and set aside. When the rice is done, I turn off the heat, skim any residual starch off the top and let sit a minute or two to absorb more water.
Some of my students wonder about whether the white rice – which has a high glycemic index – spikes my blood sugar. For 14 years I’ve studied Western herbs, mostly in the Wise Woman tradition and Eastern herbs and Traditional Chinese Medicine for the last five years.
Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) has separated foods into how they taste (flavor) sweet, sour, pungent, etc., and how they act on the body- are they warming or yang or cooling and yin, among other actions. But porridge in China can be made with other grains as well, millet and corn for example and some add beans and meat or vegetables, each item strengthening a different part of the human system. This entry was posted in The Daily Daoist and tagged chinese breakfast porridge, congee, ginger, medicinal congee, peanuts, pumpkin, rice, sesame seeds, sweet potato.
I have been interested in the Chinese healing practices for a while and I find very nourishing indeed the morning porridges.
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Herders are especially angered by events of surplus killing when a snow leopard enters a corral and kills up to 50 or more sheep and goats in a single instance. Trade centers in Afghanistan, Pakistan, and Mongolia all appear to be linked with the growing Chinese consumer market.
Many insects that damage kale, spread diseases overwinter in plant debris left in the garden at the end of the season.
Most people know that compost is a great natural fertilizer, but did you know that it also helps the soil drain freely?
Expose the insects to the harsh conditions at the surface soil by turning the soil several times over fall and winter.
If these kale pests find their way to your plants anyway, choose an insecticide labeled for use against flea beetles and make sure the label states the product is safe to use on kale.
By using fungicides early, you may be able to hold off the disease until after you harvest your crop. I have a yin belly – meaning my digestion is on the slow side, my stomach and belly are touchy and don’t like to digest hard, cold, thick or slimy things after fasting all night [break-fast, get it?] So the all-American breakfast of boxed cereal with a banana and cold (soy) milk won’t cut it.
When I first arrived in China in September, 2008 I saw a huge pot of xifan every morning at the dining hall where I was teaching.
One month of eating with the other teachers, served three Chinese meals a day in the dining hall — I had to try new things. On the hot table were trays of noodles and vegetables or meat [too greasy for my taste first thing], fried eggs, boiled eggs, steamed purple yams, steamed pumpkin, and fried breads (yutiao) and others that looked like a Chinese version of a donut. There was no salt or pepper on the table; I saw most teachers pour soy sauce onto their fried eggs and into bowls of soft tofu (doujiang) that they sprinkled with chopped scallion. Some days, I’ll add a half of a steamed yam or sweet potato and when I can get it in the fall, I’ll add steamed pumpkin – my favorite. I start with a half cup of dry organic, long grain (dami) rice, pour into a sauce pan and add three or four cups of water depending on how much broth I want with my rice. Then I scoop the whole thing into one big bowl sprinkle the ginger and scallion on top and grab a spoon.
I’ve had blood sugar problems since I was 14 years old, but my years in China and my regular regime of good food and daily exercise seem to have sent the condition packing.
Both traditions believe that healing should first begin with food and diet.[ii] So it makes sense that much of the Chinese diet has a basis in healing. I add ginger (sheng jiang) which has a pungent flavor and slightly warming action on the spleen, stomach and lung; while scallion or green onion (congjingbai) is also pungent and warm in nature, acting on the same organ channels. In fact at one time, before I understood the action of porridge, I was instructed after a fast to clean out my body with a soup made of rice porridge and vegetables. She has trained in Daoist alchemy, Taijiquan fist and weapons forms and daoyin [yang sheng practices] and apprenticed in TCM — acupuncture and eastern herbs for six years, including living two years in Hangzhou, PRC.
Is oatmeal or rye porridge just as beneficial as the rice porridge (supposing I use flakes, because whole grains take a looot to boil)? If you do not have time to steam pumpkin or carrots or yams for the breakfast what can you do? The opinions expressed are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of the publisher or editors. In the 1990’s snow leopards in Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan declined three- or four-fold, with poachers taking up to 120 animals in a single year. Fall cleanup, including disposal of plant debris and turning the soil to expose insects goes a long way toward preventing problems in the spring. In severe cases, or if you can’t bear to touch the pests, you can use Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt).


Bits of soil that travel from one part of the garden to another on the soles of your shoes may carry disease organisms. An egg and toast isn’t too bad, but I like a whole grain bread for fiber to help my belly move debris along, and sometimes it’s overwhelming first thing for my sluggish digestion. I started slowly and was usually pleasantly surprised with the new (to me) dishes—sliced celery and smoked tofu, seaweed soup, tomatoes and scrambled eggs, peanuts and potatoes with Szechuan peppers. Sweet potato, yam and pumpkin are especially good for women, they have fiber, beta-carotene, vitamins A and C, potassium, other minerals and some say plant or phytoestrogens.
The Chinese usually home-make their condiment and my favorite is mustard green and secondly green bean. My blood sugar is steady throughout the whole morning and I don’t have cravings for sweet or salty foods as I sometimes will after eating cold cereal, breads or eggs for breakfast. Rice promotes the rising of clear chi or qi (life force) in the body as it fortifies the spleen and stomach. For my yin belly, rice and ginger and scallion are moistening, warming and comforting.[iv] If I add yam or pumpkin or sweet potato (hong shu or nanguo or yu tou) the porridge will also be warming and fortifying for the stomach and spleen.
The soup was eaten daily for an extended period to clear out my body of toxins, debris and allergies. In the past two decades her training includes western herbs, western astrology, various energy healing modalities and she is a CPE-certified Interfaith Chaplain. The fur trade in Afghanistan re-emerged after the fall of the Taliban and the influx of international aid workers and soldiers – until conservationists launched an awareness campaign.
Working in compost in fall allows it plenty of time to combine with the soil so that it is ready to manage water more efficiently in spring. The pumpkin added sweetness and substance and the preserved vegetables added a satisfying (and surprising) crunch and saltiness. For me, I can feel it nourishing my insides, moistening and warming and building a fire in my digestion. In Hangzhou I was gifted with a large jar of the fermented green beans from my Mandarin teacher. No cravings for hours after I eat usually means I’ve had wholesome, nutritious food without additives or chemicals. The result was that my whole system was reset and I began the slow process of returning to health. She recently graduated as a 200-hour certified Kripalu Yoga Teacher and works as marketing and administrative coordinator for the Kripalu Schools of Yoga and Ayurveda.
For a month I watched as the Chinese teachers scooped what looked like dishwater and soggy rice into their metal bowls. I feel more satisfied after my big bowl of zhou than I do after any breakfast I’ve ever had. It also means that I am free to eat because I am hungry, not because I’m compelled by allergies to sugar, wheat or flour. Then I saw the other teachers – into their xifan they stirred fresh, steamed pumpkin and a spoon of the fermented vegetables. Unless you have had them, there is no way to describe them — there is a sweetness, a heat, saltiness and a lively crunch.
This time I took some pumpkin and a spoon of the least offensive looking fermented vegetables and went back to my table.



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