Sesame seeds are nourishing and delicious, and are popular as a dietary therapy in China. Black sesame seeds (Hei Zhi Ma) are a herb used in Chinese medicine to tonify the Yin and Blood.
In Chinese medicine conditions that have an aspect of dryness are thought to be caused by deficiencies of Yin and Blood. Hei Zhi Ma nourishes these aspects, and is a useful food therapy for problems including dizziness, skin itching and dryness, and low milk supply. Black sesame is also believed to brighten the eyes, beautify the skin and lubricate the intestines.
In Chinese culture black sesame seeds are thought to promote longevity and vitality –
A Chinese woman in ancient China was said to have consumed sesame for more than 80 years on end, which made her live to over 90 years of age and still look like a young lady. At 90, she could still walk 300 miles a day and run as fast as a deer.
~Henry C Lu, Chinese Natural Cures
Including a diverse range of plant based foods is a good way to increase the healthfulness of your diet, remedy any imbalances and prevent illness.
There are lots of delicious ways to add black sesame seeds to your day.
~ Dry fry and add a sprinkle to a rice bowl, noodle salad or Asian style tofu, fish or chicken
~ Add ½ a cup of toasted black sesame seeds to your favourite banana bread recipe – I’ve been making Sarah Wilson’s (Sugar Free) Banana Peel Bread lately.
~ Black sesame seeds nourish Blood, the foundation for breast milk in Chinese medicine theory. Add ½ a cup of ground or lightly crushed seeds to any lactation cookie recipe for an added boost.
~ Try these delicious Tang Yuan – rice balls filled with black sesame paste, one of my favourite Chinese sweets
~ Or this amazing looking black sesame chocolate cake
Food is a powerful medicine and dietary changes are an essential part of restoring your health and promoting balance. If you’ve been struggling to see changes with diet alone, a course of acupuncture and Chinese medicine treatment can get you moving in the right direction.