According to Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), the food you eat can have energetic properties that act similar to medicine. The Chinese categorise the taste of food into 5 flavours which is :
4. Spicy (or pungent)
These 5 flavours not only represent the tastes of food, but also its energetic properties and which organs they effect.
If balanced in each meal, these collective flavours are thought to bring optimal nourishment to the body, keeping it free of disease.
According to Chinese dietary wisdom:
Each of the 5 flavours is closely linked to the health and proper functioning of 5 internal organs considered important in Chinese medicine :
Referring to China’s oldest medical classic, Huangdi Neijing (Yellow Emperor’s Inner Classic), after eating, the sour flavour from foods goes to the liver, bitter flavour goes to the heart, sweet flavour goes to the spleen, spicy flavour goes to the lung and salty flavour goes to the kidney.
In other words, when food is consumed, certain flavours act on one organ more than others. Each flavour acts on or has direct influence on a specific vital organ.
When each flavour is consumed in moderation, it benefits the corresponding organ. Overindulgence in any one flavour can harm the organ and creates imbalance among the 5 vital organ systems.
For internal balance and harmony, important for good health and better immunity to diseases and infections, our diet should have a good combination of the 5 flavours.