Writings about the chestnut (Li Zi) have been found on oracle bones along with mulberry, apricot, and red jujube. They are considered a very good omen and were planted near homes to ensure prosperity and good fortune. Chestnuts are high in potassium, vitamin C, B6, copper, manganese and folate. They are known to help improve digestion, manage diabetes, and lower blood pressure. In TICM, chestnuts are categorised as having a warm temperature which indeed helps digestion through supporting the Spleen and Stomach, not only with their warmth but with their sweet flavour. The digestive system favours sweet and warm foods. Chestnuts enter the meridians of the Stomach, Spleen and Kidney. They are regarded as fruit for the Kidneys and good for treating those who suffer with Kidney disorders. 5-10 chestnuts are popularly eaten every day by the elderly to prevent and treat high blood pressure, heart disease, hardening of the arteries and osteoporosis. Chestnuts are not eaten raw, but are roasted, boiled, candied, pureed, grilled, and steamed. They can tonify our Qi (energy) and Yang (warmth), and circulate Blood. They are a great food to add in as the weather turns colder because of these effects on the body. They happen to be lower in calories than other nuts, but as you know in TICM, we don’t look at food from a caloric standpoint but from an energetic one.

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