How to Boost Metabolism with 5 Simple Steps
To make energy, or Qi (pronounced "chee") for ourselves, we must breathe air into our Lungs and be able to digest food in our Stomach. Out of air and food we make Qi, our animating life-force. The understanding of Qi is one of the main ways that medicine and thought in Asia contrast with our Western outlook.
The secret to keeping your Stomach and its main cohort of digestion, the Spleen, happy is common knowledge all over Asia.
Just the other day I bumped into a Chinese American acquaintance who was curious about my congee based project. She told me about her mom's traditional recipes that I hope to have the pleasure of trying someday.
But, I was thrilled with what she said next!
“Oh, I love eating congee, especially in the winter. Of course, it keeps you slim!”
Most Americans don’t get that. It’s just not part of the way we relate to food at all. She agreed.
So, here is a bit of a cheat sheet on this wise perspective.
How to Boost Metabolism with 5 Simple Steps:
1. Give your digestion a break with very well cooked foods. Translation: Your belly needs a break just like the rest of us! Foods that are easy to digest and absorb give your whole digestive system a break and yet deliver the nutrients you need without all the effort. The net effect is an overall energy and metabolism boost.
2. Include warm foods and drinks in your diet. Translation: Consume warm foods and drinks. Pay attention to the nature of the food as well, meaning ginger and chilis are warming even if you eat them at room temperature.
3. Lube it up. Your digestion and all your cells that is! Getting well hydrated keeps everything running smoothly. Translation: Eat foods that are full of moisture and water to make sure all the fiber is extra plump and soft. This keeps everything moving through your system so you stay regular. When nothing is sluggish or backed up your digestion, elimination, and metabolism are optimized.
4. Don't put out your digestive fire. Translation: Ice-cold drinks, raw and cold foods slow your digestion and dial back your metabolism.
5. Don't eat only complex meals of hard, dry foods. Translation: Avoid exclusively eating difficult to digest, processed, rich, undercooked foods all mixed together because they take so much energy to digest. It slows down your metabolism and it slows you down too.
That's it. You've got this!
6. Embrace simple foods. Most Americans looking out for their health avoid white rice and consider it unhealthy. My patients are often shocked when I recommend this simple fare. Tip: When slow-cooked for a long time with tons of water, rice becomes congee, the cornerstone of medicinal food all over Asia.
The most important thing is that you eat warm, warming, hydrating foods that are easy to digest so your Spleen and Stomach will be happy.
This is exactly what I had in mind when I formulated my recipe for Breakfast Cure Masala Chai Spice. White rice is a medicinal food in this case and the spices amplify the metabolism boost that circulates the Qi so you feel motivated and nourished through winter.
A Quintessential Modern Congee Recipe.
Masala Chai Spice Breakfast Cure is a recipe that accomplishes all 5 of the steps to boosting metabolism and keeping your digestion and energy balanced for the long winter months.
It's a delicious breakfast that was created to build Qi, soothe and regulate digestion, and give your whole system a break with the most gentle, hydrating cleanse. White rice breaks down completely when cooked for a long time and is able to absorb 5 times the volume of water!
Anyone who knows me even a little bit knows that I'm a huge advocate of whole grains that haven't been processed, no parts have been removed. The fiber and nutrients are so good for you. But there is a time for true comfort food that focuses solely on gently soothing, healing and nourishing.
That time is any time you feel like it, but it is highly recommended for anyone experiencing digestive distress. Over the course of a few meals you can feel the soothing relief.
Try it for yourself. The true test is how it feels in your stomach after you eat it, and how you feel moving into your day. My friend Mo said it best. "It feels like a hug in your belly!" I think you'll agree.