Monday, July 29, 2013

Food Energetics: Are You a Hot Dog?

Has anyone else heard of the Chinese Dietary Theory?
Ma and I had never heard of this but then Daddy-dog was reading, of all things, a Primal Pet Foods brochure (that he grabbed while Ma was buying my latest supply of Formulas) and he asked Ma "What are these circles with H, N, W, C in them?  It says H = Hot Protein, N = Neutral, etc...What does that mean?"

Ma's response?  "What the heck are you talking about?" as she grabbed the brochure away from Daddy-dog.  Sure enough, there were the little circles with letters in them.  So Ma went to the Primal Pet Foods website where she found in the sidebar this information:




Food Energetics
According to Chinese theory, foods play an important role in well-being. Below are protein temperatures indicating general heating/cooling properties of common foods.


Neutral Foods can be used in combination with other foods to decrease the harshness of a very cold or very hot diet.  Cooling Foods are foods that allow the body to cool.  Warming Foods are foods that allow the body to develop and maintain warmth.  Hot Foods are the most heat generating foods that allow the body to develop and maintain warmth.

Nature of Foods
Chinese dietary theory came into being more than 2,000 years ago.  Back then, no one was counting calories or researching fats/carbohydrates or talking about vitamins and minerals.  So people used a more qualitative approach, one of them being the 'nature' of the food and how it affected the body.

"The nature of a food represents the thermal effect generated in the body after ingesting it. This is the feeling of warmth or coolness experienced during or after digestion, which is independent from the temperature at which it is consumed." (Medicinal Properties of Foods According to Chinese Dietary Theory, Philippe Sionneau, translation by Janel Sharma)

Chinese dietary theory takes the yin and yang of foods into account - basically that all natural phenomena have opposites that complement each other.  According to the theory, a diet that is a balance of yin and yang foods will help prevent illness and other problems within one's body.

So, if someone shows signs of heat in the body - fever, excessive thirst, inflammatory conditions, skin irritation -  they should increase their consumption of foods with cool or cold natures (yin) thus cooling the heat from within.  If someone shows signs of cold in the body - sensitivity to cold, slow digestion, fatigue -  they should increase their consumption of foods with warm or hot natures (yang).  (Medicinal Properties of Foods According to Chinese Dietary Theory, Philippe Sionneau, translation by Janel Sharma)

Yin and Yang Foods
Foods with a higher water content are considered "cool" or yin in nature.  Yin foods cool down the body and slow bodily functions which make them more suitable in warm weather (probably why people eat foods like watermelon in the summer).

Foods with a higher energy content are considered "warm", "hot" or yang in nature.  Yang foods warm the body, stimulate vital functions and increase metabolism.  Yang foods are more suitable in cold weather.

Here is a small chart I created with some common foods and their yin or yang nature:



Dogs Can Be Hot or Cold Too! 

"A dog that is hot will typically demonstrate it through a variety of signs. A hot dog will seek cool places, will often be hot to the touch, and may pant at inappropriate times (like at night time or while at rest).  A dog that is hot may also have red eyes or red skin and may be very restless. Dogs that are affected by allergies or that are very high-arousal are characteristically very hot in nature.    

A 'cold dog' may show signs like general weakness, fatigue, exercise intolerance, poor appetite, shortness of breath, slow moving, and a preference to lay around. They may also seek out warm places, have fecal or urinary incontinence, stiffness that gets worse with rest, joint pain that gets worse in the cold weather, or have coldness of their ears, back, and limbs." 

Ha!  I always knew I was a "Hot" Dog (thanks to my incessant allergies)!  So now, Ma is looking at the yin and yang nature of the foods I am eating while watching me to see if they are making any kind of difference in my health - am I scratching/itching less, etc (as if she doesn't have enough to do already - BOL).

What are your thoughts on the Chinese Dietary Theory?  
Are you a "cold" or "hot" dog?  Are you eating foods that are best for your nature?  Would you want to hear more about the yin and yang of foods that we eat?




47 comments:

  1. Never thought about it this way...but it makes sense. I think I need some COOL foods right now!

    :)

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    1. It does make sense, doesn't it?!? I found it very interesting.

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  2. Hmmm we must be at the right temperature cause we like all those foods :)

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  3. My Dogster said that I should have some duck in my diet, since I like to lay down on the cool hearth. She said that duck is cool. She also said that we should switch my proteins around a bit. I should not eat the same protein all da time. This is a great list…. maybe I'll try some rabbit next.
    Wags,
    Ranger

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    1. Yes, duck is cool and I eat it every morning!! I switch proteins in the evening so we rotate about 3 different ones at a time. I would love to try rabbit too, Ranger!!!

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  4. Very interesting! The hubs recently went for his first acupuncture treatment to help with his knee/back troubles. The gal doing the treatment told him he was yin (she looked at his tongue and someone determined he was yin!) and told him he needs more yang. She put a heat lamp on him while she worked on him. Guess that's why he's always wanting to eat salmon - and he didn't even know it was yang!

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    1. Isn't it so interesting, Miss Jackie?!? I love some of the cooler foods and it's probably because I tend to be "hot". Who knew?!?

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  5. No wonder I don't like the lamb and venison food much! They are too hot for this fluffy snow pup! Thanks for this info Oz! Woooooowooooooooo, Ku www.haikubyku.com

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    1. You are welcome Ku! The problem with me is that I love some of the "hot" stuff which probably aggravates my allergies!

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  6. I'm fascinated by this Oz...Momz noticed the letters on the brochure and meant to do the research but hadn't gotten there yet (she says thanks!) I'm surprised at how some of the foods are categorized...I would have guessed beef to be a hot food, and would have thought duck to be the same as chicken...And I would have thought salmon and sardines would be cooling foods...I think we need to do some more reading on this

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    1. Giz, I have more research ready for the writing!!! I was getting to wordy for this first post! BOL I will share more if you want.

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  7. We have heard of this 4 peeps but never tried it. Also mon wants u to know she doesn't really have a potter shrine but she has a fancy box set of the books on which she has displayed the two wands she has received as gifts and two books on the movies and know the mini me. Dad calls it the shrine
    Urban hounds

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    1. See...we hadn't even heard about it for peeps. We are slow over here, I guess. OK...it's not a "shrine". BOL

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  8. interesting ideas there. I'm definitely a 'hot' dog :-)

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  9. Very Interesting! We will be interested to hear more.
    hugs
    Bailey, Hazel & Greta

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  10. Wow, never heard of this before. Mom wants to know more about how it works with humans! I think I am a hot dog, and my sister too.

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    1. I know...Ma is wondering about it now for humans too!

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  11. Ayurvedic medicine (Indian) has similar ideas. They believe illness is a result of an imbalance of our natural properties. I've been treated by an Ayurvedic practitioner but I didn't see results although I did follow the diet very closely.

    But I'm open.

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    1. Well, we cannot say whether this actually works or not...we just found it interesting since we had not heard of it before buying a raw dog food, of all things. Everyone needs to do what works for them!

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  12. AnonymousJuly 29, 2013

    Very interesting. I am a cold dog but Torrey is for sure hot.

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    1. Torrey is hot? Really? So you are complementary dogs! BOL

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  13. Never knew, interesting thanks for sharing.

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  14. I'm Yang and Yin cos I loves all those foods. That was very interesting Oz, we have read lots for Humoms but never for dogs xx00xx

    Mollie and Alfie

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    1. I think everyone is a little of both...and I guess if you are balanced then you achieve chi. (???)

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  15. Great post! I'm familiar with Ayurvedic medicine and we do follow some of it :-)

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    1. Thanks! Pam also has heard of the Ayurvedic medicine. Interesting.

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  16. Interesting. I have never heard of this before.

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  17. Rodrigo is a hot dog and we had to remove lamb from his diet. Ultimately, switching to raw made the biggest difference. We give our dogs warm and cool foods (chicken, turkey, and duck). Beef, a neutral food, has to be cooked first or they won't eat it unless I wait a couple of months and it's a novelty for them.

    Turkey is their favorite. What I find fascinating is that depending on the season, we can switch up their protein to make them comfortable. I haven't gone that far, because that's a lot to consider.

    I think you did a great job with this post.

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    1. Wow! Thanks Miss Kimberly. We haven't tried switching the seasonal switch yet either though I think it won't be much of a switch since it is always "hot" in South Florida!

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  18. Pawsome Post Oz!! One of my favorite foods is neutral, the other one is hot. BOL!! I guess I should have the neutral one in summer. Very informative I love the food chart, so useful and easy to understand. I don't know what kind of dog I am: hot - I like cool places, I am very alert/reactive/exciteable, and I pant. But I also have some cools - I am a fan of napping all day, only exercise in short spurts. BOL!
    Am I a neutral dog? BOL!!
    Hugs,
    Pepper

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    1. Neutral?!? You?!? Oh Pepper....BOL

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  19. This is something to think about. But nevertheless, when your pet is not feeling well, you should consult a veterinarian so that the proper feeding regimen can be established.

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    1. Well, of course! I just found this quite interesting and thought I would share it.

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  20. BOL!! Wells, I'm a Hot Dog, too!! We just get down with our bad selves!!! HEHEHE
    Very cool Oz!
    Kisses,
    Ruby ♥

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    1. BOL! Ruby...I think maybe most terriers are Hot Dogs at some point!

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  21. Hi Y'all!

    Another "Hot Dog" will now stick in his 2 cents. My Human believes in lots of Chinese medicine. Her first experience was with acupuncture in horses. Then she had it herself and found the results excellent. Then my Papa had a Chinese doctor tell him to see a cardiologist and indeed he needed a heart bypass. My Humans both drink Chinese green tea they get imported from a small town in Taiwan. So, it would follow that watching the heat in foods would be important, especially during the temperature extremes of summer and winter. I'm going to get my Human to feed me a cool meat based food in the summer and a warm meat based food in the winter.

    Thanks Oz! Still votin'!

    Y'all come back now,
    Hawk aka BrownDog

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    1. Hawk, that is so cool to hear that your family has had such success with this type of medicine. Imported green tea, eh? Ma loves green tea....how do you get the "real" stuff imported?!?

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  22. I’m nominating/inviting you for the WordPress/Blogger Family Award! See here for details: http://haikubyku.com/2013/07/30/sharing-the-bacon/
    Wooooowoooooooo! Ku

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  23. AnonymousJuly 31, 2013

    Very interesting Oz!!!! Trev said he is definitely a YANG / WARM dog as he thinks chicken is the best meal ever made!!!! BIG hugs, woofs and wags dear friend!!!!

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    1. Another Hot Dog!!! Maybe it's a terrier thing?!?

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  24. I first heard about this working as a vet tech, but not with the food thing. I just learned that there could be cold/hot type dogs. There is a specialist in our town who does the Chinese herb thing and acupuncture for dogs and I remember my vet boss talking about all of this. I always thought Shiner was a hot dog. But I'm kind of unsure. Then I read about the food thing on Kimberly's blog. I'm not sure what to think, but maybe there is something to it.

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Cairn cuddles,
Oz the Terrier