White rice porridge – The best diet therapy of a cancer patient

Western medicine currently treats cancer primarily through surgery, chemotherapy, and radiation therapy.

However, from a clinical perspective, many cancer patients who seek Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) treatment have been physically overwhelmed with adverse effects after receiving Western medicine treatment. They turn to TCM in hopes of improving their weakened conditions.

Both TCM and Western medicine have advantages and disadvantages in treating cancer. If they were to complement each other using their respective advantages to treat and cure patients, it would achieve the best comprehensive treatment model.

What is cancer from the perspective of TCM?

Traditional Chinese Medicine has its own ideas, understanding and approaches to treating cancer. Starting with the root cause of cancer, TCM believes that cancer is the result of the advancement of “phlegm dampness”, which refers to the malfunctioning of the internal organs of the human body, resulting in abnormal accumulation of body fluid. – a pathological product. .

The ancients believed that “phlegm travels with qi (life energy) and is therefore ubiquitous” and that “all diseases are caused by phlegm”. What is the root cause of phlegm? According to TCM theory, if qi is low, fluids are not properly transformed and transported, and “dampness” accumulates. Moisture congeals into phlegm when it sits too long. That is to say, the root cause of cancer is the lack of vitality inside the body, which produces phlegm, and the accumulation and stagnation of phlegm causes blood stasis and produces toxins.

The intractability of cancerous tumors lies in the imbalance of the body’s internal bio-environment, where the combination of food, phlegm, dampness, stasis and poison makes healing difficult. TCM treatment of tumors is aimed at the overall adjustment of the body, dispelling various intertwined “evil poisons”, restoring the imbalanced internal bio-environment, and promoting the disappearance or transformation of cancer cells for the body to utilize.

TCM Cancer Treatment: A Strong Spleen and Stomach Are Key

Traditional Chinese medicine believes that “the spleen is the foundation of postnatal life”, “internal organs and viscera all have their stomach qi”, and “abundance of stomach qi brings health, sound absence means death”. When the spleen and stomach are actively functioning, whatever is taken in can be fully digested, absorbed and utilized. The body can then regain health and repel disease, resulting in rapid recovery.

Therefore, an important starting point for the treatment of all diseases (including cancer) is not to damage the spleen and stomach, otherwise the disease will not only be difficult to cure, but will become unpleasant.

Many patients who have undergone surgery, chemotherapy, and/or radiation therapy as part of Western medicine treatment have a weak spleen and stomach, poor appetite, and fatigue. The main reason is that these treatments cause a lot of depletion to the body’s qi.

According to clinical statistics, 40% of cancer patients die of malnutrition. Therefore, before and after receiving western medicine treatment, one should take good care of the spleen and stomach and ensure that all food intake is absorbed normally, to defeat the cancer.

Japonica Rice – The Number One Natural Therapeutic Diet to Nourish Stomach Qi

For people who are frail and unable to eat, dietary adjustment is the most important and fundamental method advocated by TCM. “Yellow Emperor’s Inner Canon”, the ancient classic of Chinese medicine, summarizes the principles of diet and its relation to the preservation of health as follows: “The five grains are for diet, the five fruits as supplements , the five vegetables to fill in the gaps, while the five animals are for extra benefit.

The five cereals are rice, millet, beans, wheat and sorghum. They are the most important staple food as they are the main ingredients to sustain life. People who deviate from the five grains as a staple food for a long time will sooner or later suffer from health problems. Therefore, the “Compendium of Materia Medica”, another classic of Chinese medicine, says: “Nature gives us the five grains, for people to feed on. You live when you get them, and you die if you don’t.

The “Compendium of Materia Medica” also pointed out that among the five grains, Japonica rice is the best because it is sweet in nature, possesses the harmony provided by heaven and earth, and is considered moderate for almost everyone. world. Whether the body is healthy or sick, eating Japonica rice can sustain life without any side effects. It can also neutralize the bias of other foods, which makes the human body easily digest and absorb nutrients from other foods.

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Japonica rice is sweet in nature, possesses the harmony of heaven and earth, and is considered the most moderate and suitable rice for sustaining life. (Shutterstock)

Japonica rice porridge nourishes spleen, stomach, replenishes deficiencies, profusely benefits

Cooking Japonica rice into porridge can not only nourish the spleen and stomach and invigorate stomach qi, but also has the following four benefits:

  1. Nourish yin and promote bodily fluids, nourish internal organs.
  2. Promotes perspiration and detoxification of the body.
  3. Diuretic effect, reducing flatulence.
  4. Help other medications work.

Wang Shixiong, a Qing Dynasty medical scientist, mentioned in “Suixiju Diet Spectrum” that if poor people suffer from deficiency syndrome, they can take the watery portion on thick rice porridge, which can often work wonders similar to ginseng soup.

Large families often cook porridge in large pots. During cooking, when the top of rice porridge bubbles when boiling and becomes thick and smooth like batter, it is called “rice oil” (congee oil). Skim this layer of rice oil into a bowl, drink it straight or add a little salt to serve. It can replenish fluids and essence and is very nourishing for the frail and elderly. Whether it is for a patient or a mother who has just delivered a newborn baby, porridge is still the best diet for recovery purposes.

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The rice soup (oil porridge) on the top layer of Japonica rice porridge is valuable for replenishing fluid and essence and is beneficial for the elderly, the sick and mothers of newborns. (Shutterstock)

Zhang Mu, a prominent physician, said that if a patient is extremely frail and suffers from diarrhea after eating for a long time, and does not improve after taking medicine, he should try taking porridge.

Porridge can be prepared by adding rice and water to a clay pot and letting it boil. After the rice is cooked and the porridge oil appears, remove only the cooked rice and add fresh rice. When the porridge becomes very thick, take it out and enjoy it. The two rounds of rice oils are now all in the same bowl of porridge, which is good for “restoring vitality”.

Some doctors do not let patients take porridge, because a sick person has no vitality in his body. If they cannot eat porridge and it is difficult to swallow the rice, their stomach will become empty and their condition will get worse. Because the stomach qi is deficient, the medicine taken cannot reach the part of the body affected by the stomach qi and provide its therapeutic effect.

Thick porridge is more effective than watery porridge

There are specific traditional methods and techniques for preparing truly healthy rice porridge. The secret of making porridge is clearly stated in Yuan Mei’s “List of Suiyuan Foods” of the Qing Dynasty: “If you see water but don’t see rice, it’s not porridge; if you see the rice but not the water, that’s not porridge either. You need to make the water and rice mix well, soft and oily, and it’s real porridge. We often say “melted” porridge, which means “to boil the rice until it crumbles and gradually turns into a melted form”.

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Porridge is prepared by boiling the grains of rice in a molten form, at this time the grains are completely melted and produce the best effect. (Shutterstock)

When preparing porridge, it is advisable to use Japonica rice. Watery and thick porridge have different effects – thick porridge has a strong tonic effect and is recommended for people with severe spleen and stomach deficiencies. For those who have flatulence in the abdomen, have difficulty urinating, are frail and unable to sweat, it is advisable to take the more watery type.

Zhang Mu also pointed out that when taking porridge, remember to take it hot, never cold, which can cause chokingso please be aware.

Special skills in the preparation of porridge

When preparing porridge, it is best to add enough water at the beginning, master the correct ratio of water to rice, and do not add water during the cooking process, otherwise the porridge will become thinner and reduce the consistency and richness of flavor. Under normal circumstances, the water to rice ratio for a thick porridge is 15:1 (e.g. 1 bowl of Japonica rice plus 15 bowls of water), and the water to rice ratio for a watery porridge is 20: 1. If the cooking time is longer (eg 2 hours), the water to rice ratio for thick porridge is 20:1 and that for watery porridge is 30:1.

It is always recommended to use pans to cook the porridge, because they can keep the heat longer and heat the rice grains continuously and more evenly, to keep the porridge fragrant and sticky. It is better if the cooking time can be up to 2 hours so that the rice grains can be completely melted and become more mushy.

Eating porridge is the easiest and most effective way to improve the stomach qi of the body. Only after the body’s stomach qi recovers can it effectively absorb and utilize other food intakes.

Rice porridge is the very basis of maintaining health. Another simple remedy for nourishing the qi of the spleen and stomach is “Sishen (four herbs) decoction”, which consists of yam, gorgonian, lotus seeds and Poria cocos. These four herbs have mild medicinal properties and are very effective in regulating the spleen and nourishing the stomach. For physically frail patients after cancer treatment, astragalus can be added to replenish qi to improve the body’s ability to recover.

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