Foods for Yin Deficiency

What and how we eat can make a big difference to our digestion. Here are some general and specific tips to help you if you’re experiencing Yin Deficiency as diagnosed by your Chinese Medicine practitioner.

• Include a large variety of foods in the diet.fresh fruit and vegies

• Live on a mainly vegetarian diet of light, simple foods.

• Eat largely whole, unprocessed foods.

• Chew and swallow slowly.

• Relax whilst eating; avoid eating while reading, watching TV or rushing.

• Eat regularly. The amount of food and time of meals should be similar every day. Optimal is breakfast at about 7 A.M., lunch around 12 noon and supper at 6 P.M.

• Food intake should be greatest in the morning, a moderate amount at lunch, and a small amount at the evening meal.

• Eat small amounts of food frequently rather than large amounts of food infrequently.

• Avoid eating when in any kind of extreme emotional state.

• Eat moderately at each meal; eat until only 2/3 full.

• Eat clean, fresh, organic and seasonally ripe produce as often as possible.

• Avoid extremes in the diet, such as too hot, spicy, too raw, too cold, or too greasy.

• Balance the five flavours; sour, bitter, sweet, pungent and salty, to the best of your ability. Ask your practitioner for clarification on flavour categorisation.

• Avoid eating anything 2-3 hours before sleep.

Specific advice for Yin Deficiency


Dairy products, most non-citrus fruits, honey, pork, tofu, olive oil, peanut oil and sesame oil. kidney congee and liver congee (rice porridge), abalone, apple, bitter gourd/wild cucumber, cantaloupe, chicken/duck eggs, coconut milk, crab, dates, duck, chestnuts, walnuts, clams, kidney beans, kumquats, lychee, mussel, pear, peas and yam.


Raw fruits and vegetables, cold foods, caffeine and alcohol.

Other advice:

If you are interested for specific advice on foods to support fertility, start here.

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