Why are the channels clogged?

From early in life we partake of dense, heavy foods: cheese, baked goods, meats, fried potatoes, ice cream etc. push a thick, dense substance through a strainer, and eventually the small openings get clogged, rendering the strainer less and less effective. the same thing happens with our organs, such as the liver, the intestines, the lungs and the kidneys. Faced with a daily load of waste matter far in excess of what the body is prepared to handle, our organs soon become less and less efficient in excreting the excess through normal body channels. Other exits to the exterior are then formed, via the skin and mucus membranes of all our body orifices. The excess matter that cannot be excreted remains inside the body. The residual waste, known as phlegm in Chinese medicine or Ama in Ayurveda, is a major cause of blockage related illness, from acute infections to chronic degenerative conditions.

Clogging universal attributes

Excessive heat, oily and heavy attributes in the body,either as constitution or as condition, is a vulnerability which tends to cause obstruction in the body channels, leading to blockages and built–up pressure. The heavy and oily attributes tend to clog and block the body passages and enclose the heat internally, building up pressure similarly to a pressure cooker. The heat further dries and consolidates the obstructions, making it fixated, stuck and hard to discharge. This situation can lead to conditions such as formation of tumors, elevated blood pressure or cerebral hemorrhages. For instance, because of the tendency for channel blockage, people in this condition may suffer from a sinus-type headache if they miss their morning coffee. To balance this condition, a light and relatively dry diet should be followed. The main objective is to open the channels and keep the system airy. Regarding temperature, although heat is present, the treatment strategy is not to cool strongly, since the cold tends to contribute to blockages as well. A relatively neutral heat-cold approach is adopted.

Recommended dietary habits

  1. Eat only when trulyhungry;do not eat before the previous meal has been digested, but only when there is a sense of lightness in the body and strong appetite.
  2. Eat fewer meals, only main meals, usually 3 meals a day, sometimes 2. Avoid eating between meals. The most important approach to this problem is to eat simply and lightly, and to pay particular attention to posture and tension during and after eating.
  3. Eat dinner no later than sunset
  4. Avoid eating at night.
  5. Eat consciously and attentively.
  6. Chew the food well.
  7. Amount of food – relatively small meals, avoid eating too much and leave some space in the stomach. Stop eating before totally full.
  8. Simple and easy to digest meals – Avoid very varied meals or hard-to-digest food combinations. A diet that is rich in vegetables and moderate in fruits will help resolve stagnation.
  9. Cooked and hot food – both cooked and raw foods may be eaten. Very cold foods are better avoided.
  10. Fresh food –for this condition it is best to eat as fresh as possible.
  11. Eat your greens – leafy, upward growing greens, either raw or cooked more lightly for less time.
  12. Food texture – Avoid foods that are compressed, sticky and fatty. Prefer food in a more dry texture or only slightly wet, such as baked / stirred / steamed vegetables.
  13. The nature of the food – Eat foods of light and airy quality
  14. Flavors – emphasize in the diet the bitter and pungent flavors. Bitter foods will help resolve stagnation affecting the liver and stomach, while moderate amounts of pungent flavor will help to stimulate the system out of stagnation. Ginger and citrus peel are examples for this purpose.
  15. Energetics – prefer neutral and light foods and use digestive stimulants spices.
  16. Avoid drinking water adjacent to meals – up to 15 minutes before eating, during meals and two hours after eating. If you are thirsty you can drink one or more small cups of herbal tea as is customary in the eastern countries.
  17. Take a short, light walk after meals.
  18. Exercise – What better way to help your qi move than to move! Follow training recommendations based on your own health and constitution. Walking is one of the very best things you can do for both your body and your mind. Even 10 minutes/day makes a big difference.

Cereal grains:

Cereals general quality is heavy and nutritious, and they contribute to weight gain. Therefore, cereals suitable for this condition are whole grains with a cleansing, diuretic and drying effect. A menu based on these grains and steamed vegetables is usually beneficial.Bread is less appropriate because it is considered stickier and causes blockages.

The most suitable grains are buckwheat, quinoa, millet, barley (grits), dried corn and rye.Also good are rye crackers and buckwheat rice cakes.

Second priority: basmati brown rice, long grain brown rice, black rice, granola,fryki (smoked green wheat), buckwheat noodles (soba noodles).

Third priority:spelt grains, oat grains, wheat (bulgur), Indian bread (whole grain rye/corn/buck wheat flour chapatti), or bread made from sprouted and grounded grains.

Best avoid bread and pastries made from wheat flour / spelt flour / oatmeal flour, or pasta from either durum flour or whole wheat flour.


Are relatively difficult to digest, and therefore their preparation is critical and they must be cooked well. Assuming digestion allows, legumes are a very good food for this condition, thanks to their drying and diuretic quality. The most suitable is the green mung beans followed by Adzuki bean, red beans, black beans, white beans and lentils.

Second priority: all other types of beans and chickpeas.

Cooked vegetables:

Most vegetables, lightly cooked, steamed or stir-fried, are good for balancing this condition because of their light and dry quality. Spices may be added for enhancing their cleansing and scraping effect on the body.

Excellent vegetables are cabbage, stalks of celery and broccoli. Very good are cauliflower, Brussels sprouts, kohlrabi, radish, turnips, bitter pungent sprouts, green beans, green peas, and asparagus.

Also good are potatoes, carrots, beets, celery root, parsley root, fennel, artichoke, chard and red pepper.

Less appropriate are tomato, zucchini, pumpkin, chestnut pumpkin, squash, eggplant, okra and sweet potato.

Uncooked vegetables:

Most appropriate are bitter and pungent green leaves. Rocket, garden cress, water cress, mustard leaves, arugula, baby leaves, endive, coriander, parsley, green onion, chives.

Second priority: Arabic lettuce, onions, carrots, kohlrabi, radish. A small amount of tomato and cucumber are appropriate.


The most suitable are the Nuri seaweed (lightly roast over a flame and crumble over the food on the plate) and Wakame.

Animal food: (quality is very significant)

This conditiondoes not require large quantities of animal protein because of their clogging nature. For most, the recommendation is to eat small amounts of turkey or chicken (preferably low fat, breast) and eggs, especially the whites, not very often, either once or twice a week in average. White lean Fish may be consumed infrequently, and usually it is better to avoid beef, pork and lamb.

Milk and dairy products: (quality is very significant)

Sticky Dairy products can easily disturb this condition. Likely choices are small portions ofboiled goat milk or semi-solidRicotta cheese. Best avoid beef or buffalo milk, yogurt, white cheese, yellow cheese, labaneh, sour cream and ice cream.


Fruits that are not super sticky are appropriate, since fruits have an airy quality and increase the sense of lightness in the body and cleanse the channels when eaten separately from other foods.

Most appropriate by far are raw apples. Also good are pears, guava, pomegranate, persimmon, papaya, grapefruit, lime, melon, watermelon, and quince.

Less appropriate are plum, strawberry, raspberry, grape, cherryand dried fruits (blueberries, apples, pineapples, and apricots).

Better avoid orange, tangerine, pineapple, fig, mango, banana and dates. 

Nuts and seeds:

Most nuts and seeds are not recommended for this condition,since they are heavy and sticky. Any type should be consumed in small quantities only. Most appropriate are sunflower and pumpkin seeds. Less appropriate are sesame seeds and coconut flakes. Best avoid almonds, cashews, walnuts, pecans, acorns, macadamia, pistachios and Brazil nuts.


Oils should be consumed in very small doses. The most suitable are sunflower oil, corn oil, mustard oil. To a lesser extent sesame oil, olive oil, grape seed oil, safflower oil and ghee. Least appropriate are tahini, coconut, avocado, butter and peanut butter.


In this category there is no great variety to say the least. It is best to eat a little of this group. The selected sweetener is bee’s honey that has not been warmed, with a solid texture, preferably at least a year old.


Spices are an essential addition to this condition, since they help to clean and open the channels. Almost all the spices are good, especially the pungent ones, which penetrate and dry and prevent the accumulation of water in the tissues. At the top of the list are red dried chili, black pepper, turmeric, mustard seeds, horseradish, ginger, cloves, and mint. Also very good are fenugreek, cinnamon, cardamom, cilantro seeds, cumin ajuwan seeds, caraway, celery seeds, basil, thyme, rosemary, marjoram, tarragon, hyssop, and fennel. Salt can be harmful.


This condition needs less water, and should avoid cold drinks and ice drinks. Drinking herbal tea is recommended, especially ginger tea, cloves,mint, sage, turmeric. A little honey can be added to the tea, but it is better to avoid sugar and milk. Black coffee with cardamom is appropriate in low doses. Cereal milk such as spelt milk or quinoa milk or brown rice milk is best used occasionally or moderately. Suitable Alcoholic beverage is dry red wine, and in special occasions a short drink of liquor is acceptable.

Optional daily menu for this condition:

Drink options following awakening:

Hot or cold infusion of mint/sage/coriander seeds

Chicory coffee or chai without milk or with a touch of cereal milk.

Bancha green tea, nettle tea, dandelion tea

9:00 Breakfast:

Fluffy Buckwheat with stir-fried / oven baked vegetables and green salad

“Tabula” salad – quinoa and millet

Granola without nuts with carrot juice / pomegranate juice / green smoothie

sprouted bread Toast / chapatti with olive oil and hyssop / homemade pesto / bean spread / vegetable spread / honey

12:00 in between snack:

Best avoid

A few raw vegetable slices such as carrots, radishes, kohlrabi

An apple

14:00 Lunch:

Vegetarian meal:

Barley Grits / brown basmati rice / friki, 30% of the meal

stir fried vegetables, 50% of the meal

Legumes (if digestion allows), 20% of the meal


Non vegetarian meal:

Buckwheat / quinoa / millet, 30% of the meal

Baked Vegetable or green salad, 50% of the meal

Chicken/Turkey breast 20% of the meal

A cup of green tea

17:00 in between meals:

A fresh fruit

A few items of dried fruits and a handful of lightly roasted pumpkin seeds

19:00 Dinner:

Green Vegetable omelet and rye/sprouted toast/cracker with homemade pesto and green salad

One of the recommended cereal grains and oven-baked vegetables

Buckwheat noodles and stir-fried vegetables, with Mung bean sprouts

Homemade chickpea omelet, one of the recommended spreadsand cooked vegetables (green beans, peas, asparagus, corn, etc.)

Vegetable millet pie / millet-mung patties and green salad

22:00 before bedtime:



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