Nutrition = food+digestion
No matter how great our food is, if the digestive process is faulty, the body will not be able to fully breakdown and extract nutrients from our food. The digestive process does not start in the stomach. In Western Medicine it is known that digestion begins in the mouth by chewing. Enzymes release as the chewing process takes place. In Chinese medicine, the digestive process starts even earlier. The energy of the stomach begins with the eyes. The first acupuncture point of the Stomach Primary channel is near the eye, the pathway then descends to the nose, the mouth, circles the jaw, and travels to the ear. Digestion begins with the senses. The body automatically excretes digestive enzymes merely by the sight and smell of food.
Every one of these steps - seeing tasting and chewing is an important part of digestion. The next point on the Stomach channel illustrates an aspect of digestion ignored by western nutrition. The point ST8 is located at the corner of the forehead within the hairline. It enters the brain. the following point ST9 is by the esophagus - the pathway point after we chew and swallow our food. That deviation into the brain, in my opinion, shows how important our thoughts or opinions are about what we eat. Our senses are integral to our digestive processes just as chewing and swallowing can be.
Separating Pure from Impure
In Chinese Medicine, the small intestine, the organ that follows the stomach in the digestion chain, is said to be the organ in charge of separating the pure and impure, good and bad. Here is where the information we "digested" with our food comes into play. When we take in food we love, our energy is such that we are happy to receive it. Comfort food - is comforting just for this reason, when we eat it we evoke all our memories associated with that particular food.
Now, imagine really wanting that apple pie or chocolate cake for dessert. On one hand, we really want to eat it, on the other hand, there is a thought that we should not eat these sweets. The first message to the body is "this is great, I will benefit from it". The second message, and most likely the message that is most prominent is "oh my god, this is really bad for me, I shouldn't". Most of the time, the latter message is the dominant message with which our food is carried downward into our stomach and intestines.
That conflicting energy, energy that tells the small intestine this is good and then bad for your health at the same time may explain a lot of digestive issues people experience, including irritable bowl syndrome. Imagine getting conflicting messages like this from your boss every day - you would either be afraid of making the wrong choice or you might eventually just quit.
The way to eat is with a sense of gratitude. Enjoy it.
If you think something is bad for you - should you really be eating it?