Food As MedicineAcupuncturist Damon Lee

TOMATO is a fruit or a kind of vegetable ? Who care ? It is a good helper in the kitchen. It has great benefit to prevent different kinds of cancers especially prostate cancer-the #1 killer for men. According to some scientists that the Italian males suffer less prostate cancer threats. Thank you for the tomato sauce !!! It is thought that the main reason for preventing cancer is the ' LYCOPENE ' - another type of carotene. It is also an antioxidant which guards the cardiovascular system and acts as antiinflammatory agents and even retard aging. LYCOPENE (the red colour), according to recent research, will dissolve better with high heat plus fat. This is better to cook tomato with meat. For males, you will have 34% less changes to have prostate cancer if you have tomato at least two times per week. According to TCM and Western nutritional medicine, tomato is a good source of Vitamin C and amino acid which can prevent skin aging. Therefore, tomato can provide you with beautiful, soft and healthy skin.

 Toxin Cleansing Drink: 1 glass of fresh tomato juice + 1 teaspoonful of ginger juice. Drink it warm or use lemon juice instead of ginger. Let's talk about some cooking.

1. OX-Tail tomato soup: Ingredients:Ox-tail 1-2 lbs, tomatoes 1/2 lb., potatoes 1/2 lb., cabbage 1 lb. garlic 1/2 oz. white pepper(whole) some. Cook for 2 hours. Take away the extra grease before serving. At one time, tomato was used as aphrodisiac. Is it true ? Well, it depends on how the ingredients are cooked and mixed. Try this one. After the above soup was done. Before serving, take a portion and cook with 2 oysters, more garlic and some Chinese chive. Take it more often to have better results.

2. Rice with tomato sauce: Use less amount of water plus the tomato paste or sauce or fresh ones to cook with the rice. Meats can be added when the rice is about 70% done. Usually small amount of sugar can be added for the taste.

 3. Fish with tomato sauce: Any kind of fish, pan fry the fish with a few slices of ginger root (to get rid of the fishy smell) until it becomes brownish. Add diced tomato,pepper, garlic, sugar( a little bit more) and a small amount of salt to the fish. May need some water,too. Cook for another 10 minutes. It is ready. Put some diced green onion or hot pepper on top.

GARLIC is usually prohibited in cooking in most of the Chinese Monasteries or temples. Another two items are also not allowed -- the Chinese chive and green onion. The main reason is that they produce very strong aromas that may affect the monks' peaceful mind and soul. In the old days, women always warned their husbands not to eat Chinese chive and garlic when they travel alone!! WHY?? They do increase the sex drive, according to herbal medicine. In Northern China, people do use large amount of these three vegetables for cooking in the Winter time because they produce extra heat against the cold weather and some common diseases. The ancient Egyptians used this miraculous herb for more then 4,000 years. In the East, the Chinese and Japanese have long histories about its therapeutic effects even a few thousand years ago. It is well known that garlic has very strong antibacterial, antifungal, antiparasitic and even antiviral properties. Nowadays, scientists realize that the strong typical smell compound is called ALLICIN. Allicin, apparently, is the main antibiotic-like action which can weaken the micro membrane. They body self defence mechanism can kill the invaders successfully. Clinically, garlic can promote the immune system functions and it also has mild blood thinning effect . It is a very good agent to prevent heart diseases because it can also lower blood cholesterol and regulate lung functions. Its diuretic actions can help to eliminate extra fluid from the circulatory system so that hypertension can be prevented. The antioxidant effects can enhance cell functions. A very inexpensive agent to prevent aging and cancers. Garlic becomes one of the most popular spices in every kitchen, raw or dry. Is garlic an aphrodisiac agent?? Well, if garlic can give you a healthy and strong body, all other functions will be in a well balanced state. When you believe its power, it gives you the results.

HOUSEHOLD USES: It is used as a helpful spice to eliminate the fishy and meaty smell in cooking as well as killing the parasites. Usually, minced garlic can added to the meat with other spices such as soy sauce, pepper and sugar. Before frying, small minced and diced garlic will give you the unbelievable favor. Black bean and garlic is the best combination in Chinese cooking - the famous Black Bean Sauce ( BBS- one teaspoonful of black bean and one teaspoonful of minced garlic with small amount of water to make a paste). Let make a few black bean sauce dishes.

1. Spareribs with BBS: spareribs 1/2 lb. 1 teaspoonful of black bean, 1 teaspoonful of minced garlic, some white pepper powder, cooking wine 1 tablespoonful, soy sauce 1 tablespoonful, some sugar and 1 teaspoonful of corn starch. Mix all the above together and steam for 20 minutes. Add some diced green onion on top before serving.

2. Prawns with BBS: Tiger prawns 1/2 lb( remove the shell; cut the back open to get rid of the guts and put the prawns in the freezer for 15 minutes before cooking), celery 1/4 lb. or more cut into about 1" long, mix the BBS as above with soy sauce, cooking wine, white pepper, ginger 3 slices and small amount of salt. Put some diced garlic to the frying pan with oil until you smell the aroma. Put the prawns and celery in . Stir fry for a few minutes. The prawns will turn into pink colour. Add the sauce in and stir for 1/2 min. DONE!! The same way can be used to cook pork, beef, chicken, fish fillet and even mixed vegetables.


1. Irritable cough (especially children), use one slice of garlic to rub the outside front neck , the Adman's Apple area, can help to ease off the cough and promote sleep. Ginger root has the same effect.

2. Swollen Legs - " the fish soup with garlic" - One Tipeoma fish ( get it from the near by Chinese supermarket ), garlic 30 g. Fry the fish with amount of vegetable oil till brownish colour. Add 700 c.c. of water and the garlic. Bring it a boil and simmer for one hour. Take the soup twice a day. You can eat the fish,too.

3. Crispy Garlic bits - Dice 100-200 g of garlic and fry if with low heat until it is dry and crispy. It can be added to almost any dish you made, epically on fresh salad. TRY IT!! A lot of people don't like the smell of cooked or raw garlic but they will enjoy this one.


1. Wash hands with soupy warm water.

2. Lemon juice can help.

3. Chew a small amount of parsley.

 4. Chew a few roasted peanuts or peanut butter with roasted chunky peanuts in it.

 NATURAL INSECTICIDE. You want to get rid of the bugs in your garden?? It will not harm the environment. Organic ?! Now chop up some garlic and onion and put them in a bucket. Pure water and mix well. Add 1-2 oz. of hot pepper powder. Age the mixture for 3 days. Filter and get the liquid. Spray your garden plants or vegetables.

GET RID OF DOG FLEAS WITH GARLIC. - please see the Odds & Ends portion of this website.
Good luck and good health. Damon.


Ginger is one of the common ingredients in Western and Chinese cooking. Ginger is reputed to treat motion sickness, vomiting, coughing, gastric discomforts, abdominal gas and arthritis, etc. It can be used internally and externally with other herbs. It was mentioned in Traditional Chinese Medicine(TCM) more then 2000 years ago about its powerful therapeutic effects on different organs. According to some researches in different countries, especially in China and Japan, they think that ginger has the following therapeutic effects: anti-motion sickness, anticoagulant (thinning the blood), lowering blood cholesterol, preventing cancers, relieving arthritic pain, promoting gastric and circulatory functions. Ginger does not cause drowsiness in treating motion sickness. The main therapeutic compound is GINGEROL which has the chemical structure of aspirin(ASA)-a potent anticoagulant. It is also a desmutagen, thwarting mutational(transforming) cell changes leading to cancer, which blocks cancer. Young ginger root is used for cooking and has no therapeutic effects. When you pick the ginger in the supermarket, get the ugly old ones.


1. Motion Sickness or Morning Sickness. a. Cut a slice of ginger and put it under the tongue for 15 minutes. B. Make a cup of mild tea and put one tablespoonful of ginger juice in it. Drink it hot and slowly.

2. Flu Symptoms. (for the first 2 days only. See your doctor for persisting symptoms)a. Use 4-6 slices of ginger, one teaspoonful of brown sugar and one cup of water. Cook for 15 minutes with medium heat. Drink it hot. b. Use 4-6 slices of shredded ginger, 4 pieces of green onion white (the white part near the root), one or two pieces of cirantro and 2-4 oz. of fish fillet. Fry the fish fillet with a small amount of vegetable oil till slightly brownish color. Add all other items with 11/2 cups of water. cook for 15 minutes. Take it hot. Cover yourself with a blanket to induce sweating. Dry yourself after sweating and take a good rest. Drink plenty of fluid.

3. Mild Gastro-intestinal discomforts. Use 4-6 slices of fresh ginger and 1/2 fresh orange peel to make one cup of drink. Can add a small amount of honey. Drink it hot.

4. Coughing with itchy throat. Use 4-6 slices of fresh ginger with one tablespoonful of honey to make a drink. Rinse mouth and throat with salt water to eliminate bacteria.

5. Arthritis. .a. Drink ginger tea frequently and a few red dates can be added for energy. Use small amount of crushed ginger and garlic to apply on painful sites for 15-25 minutes. Hot compresses can be used on top of the mixtures.

6. Burned injury. Cleansed the burned area with cold water. Apply ginger juice to the area and covered with bandage. Put cold compress on if hot pain persists. See you doctor if large area is burned and blisters appeared.


1. GINGER AND GREEN ONION DIP. Mince 1-2 oz. of fresh ginger. Dice some green onion. Cook the mixtures with medium heat for a few minutes. Sesame oil, salt and oyster sauce can be added. This is the best dip for steamed chicken , fish and even vegetables.

2. BEEF WITH GINGER AND GREEN ONION. Prepare the sliced beef with soy sauce, corn starch, small amount of oil, sugar and a few tablespoonful of water( beef absorbs water in order to become tender). Shred the ginger and green onion. Put 1-2 tablespoonful of oil in the pan. Add one teaspoonful of minced garlic when the oil starts to boil. Put the garlic in the pan. When the garlic aroma comes out, add the rest of the items in. Stir fry for a minutes. Add cooking wine and sesame oil. Done !! Enjoy the beautiful dish. Other meats can be used instead of beef.


Green onion is a very common vegetable in our garden. We use it for cooking or garnishing the dishes. It is rich with Vitamin B & C. In Chinese Medicine, it is used to promote sweating and increase urine output (diuretic effect). It is also well known as an expectorant ( to get rid of phlegm or mucus ). In medicine practice, green onion white is the therapeutic part not the green hollow area. It is commonly combined with other herbs such as garlic and ginger.


1. COMMON COLD. Use 10 pieces of green onion white ( near the root area ), 5 slices of ginger, 12 g of preserved black bean (purchase form herb shop) and 3 cup of water. Cook all the items till about one cup of liquid left. Strain it. Take the liquid hot. Rest in bed and cover with a blanket. You will sweat and fever goes down. Dry your body after sweating. Rest and sleep. Drink plenty of fluid. See your doctor for persisting symptoms.

2. STUFFY NOSE WITH ITCHY THROAT. . Cook noodle with green onion white. Add white pepper to make it more effective. Don't use white pepper when you have a sore or inflamed throat! See your doctor!

3. PROBLEM TO URINATE DUE TO ENLARGED PROSTATE OR INFECTION. Mix crushed green onion white and honey. Apply the paste upon the lower abdomen and cover with gauge or cloth. About 30 minutes, an odd smell will come and there is the urge to go. See your doctor when the symptoms persist. Never eat or drink the mixture. It causes gastric disturbances.


It is wise to cook all kinds of seafood with green onion because it increases the favor. It also kills parasites and neutralize certain proteins which cause allergy reactions. Green onion can get rid of fishy smell from seafood or meats. In winter time or during cold days, make a dish with tau-fu ( bean curd ) and green onion plus meat. Warm your whole body up!!

HONEY **Warning: Don't feed honey to infants under one years old. Bacterial botulism spores may happen to be in honey. When the spores germinate in the baby's immature Gastrointestinal Tract, the deadly toxin could be produced.


**1622, in China, honey had been mentioned in classical medicine books.

**An Egyptian medical text, Smith Papyrus, described the use of honey dating between 2600 and 2200 B.C.

**The Edinburgh New Dispensatory, edition in 1811, mentioned about using honey to treat phlegm and abscesses.

**Guido Manjo, author of The Healing Hand, had experimented to kill Escherichia coli or Staphylococcus aureus by using honey .

**Dr. P.J. Armon used honey to treat infected wounds at the Kilimanjaro Christian Medical Centre and the effects were same as antibiotics.

Honey's possible therapeutic effects.

**In Traditional Chinese Medicine(TCM), it is used to promote mental ability and concentration; it is also an anti-aging supplement; it helps to strengthening weakened organs; reliefs pain and neutralize toxins.

**Nowadays, it can be used to disinfect wounds and sores.

**It alleviates asthmatic problems.

**It sooths sore throats and dry mouth.

**It promote sleep and sedates the nerves.

** It promote healthy red /white blood cells and platelets.

** It regulate the circulatory system and lower blood pressure.

**It simulates the adrenal glands.

**It kills and weaken different types of bacteria and fungus.

**It promotes wound healing and acts as a detergent to ulcers.

**It regulates bowel functions - relieves constipation and stops diarrhea.


Traveler's Diarrhea -First glass, 8 oz. orange juice, a pinch of salt, 1/2 teaspoonful of honey. Second glass, 8 oz. of distilled water and 1/4 teaspoonful of baking soda. Alternate drinking from each glass. Apply hot compresses to abdominal area if there is cramps and pain.

Sore throat - A tall glass of water, 2 slices of lemon, 1 tablespoonful of honey. Mixed well and put the tall glass in the freezer for 30 minutes. Slip the liquid with a strew slowly.

Promote sleeping: 3/4 cup of hot water and 2 teaspoonful of honey. Drink the liquid one hour before retired.

Respiratory asthma and allergy - honey can desensitize allergy reactions by drinking small amount of honey water in the morning, especially for children. May start with 1/8 of a teaspoonful and gradually increased to 1 teaspoonful. Ask your doctor if your child has strong reactions to pollen. Honey may not be appropriate for him/her.


Honey garlic spareribs

Pork spareribs 1lb, minced garlic 1 tablespoonful, honey 4-6 tablespoonful.

Spareribs are marinated with small amount of salt, soy sauce, sugar, cooking wine and corn starch for 30 minutes. Use some vegetable oil to deep fry the ribs. Strained. Use another frying pan with one tablespoonful of oil, add the minced garlic and ribs . When the garlic aroma comes out, add the honey and stir for a few minutes. Done. Garnish with some sesame seeds.

Honey lemon tea

3 slices of lemon, 2 teaspoonful of honey, 1 tea bag. Add boiling water and stir well. Take away the lemon and tea bag if you don't like strong tea. It has a very soothing and calming effect.

Artificial Sweetener ( Artificial Sugar, Diabetic sugar )

Artificial sweetener is commonly used by diabetics , weight control and cooking . Food and candies without real sugar can prevent dental problems. Artificial sweetener is sweeter then cane sugar and we use small amount for our needs. Some types of artificial sugar do produce calaries but far more less then cane sugar.

Types of Artificial sugar

Sugar Alcohols ( Sorbital - a crystalline alcohol CH2OH(CHOH)4 present in some berries and fruits., xylitol ( ? xylose) - wood sugar, a crystaline, non fermentable pentose., Mannitol )

They are commonly used in chewing gums and candies products. Diarrhea symptoms are common for people with allergy.

Saccharin (C7 H5 NO3 S ) - A sweet, white , powdered synthetic product derived from tar, 300-500 times as sweet as sugar. Used as artificial sweetener. Its use is now restricted because of its ability to cause cancer in experimental animals. Recently, it is thought that the impurity quality during manufacturing process may be the cause of cancer(mainly urinary bladder cancer) instead the Saccharin itself. Saccharin has bitter taste. Aspartame doesn't.

Aspartame - an artificial sweetener synthesized from two amino-acids, aspartic acid and phenylalanine. It is 180 times sweeter then sugar. Trade names as Equal & Nutrasweet. It was reported before that it causes cancer of the brain and other physical problems but until now, there is no scientific proof. People with phenylketonuria should be cautious because they cannot metabolize phenylalanine. For safety, one kg of body weight can consume less then 50 mg ( about 12 cans of diet pops). Aspartame has low heat tolerance. Don't add it into boiling water.

Tips for using artificial sugar.

Read the label regarding the safety use of the product. Ask your doctor or dietitian for further information. Try to avoid using large amount of the same product. If artificial sugar is not your choice, use small amount of regular sugar. If you are on a diet, compare this - one teaspoonful of regular sugar produces 20 calories and one teaspoonful of oil will give you 45 calories.

What else I can use to substitute sugar in cooking ?

Dried fruits are the best substitutes in general cooking such dried pineapple, apricot, raisin, dates, etc.

In 1970, Steinman, found out that sugar can reduce the white blood cell phagocytic ability which will affect our immune system. See the following chart.

Sugar Consumption(Unit: 1 teaspoonful)

 WBC Phagocytic Ability

 Reduced Phagocytic Ability(%)

0 ( no sugar taken )



6 ( appr. one can of soft drink )



12 ( 1 soft drink & 2 cups of tea with 2 tsp of sugar )



18 ( 1 piece of cake + 1 chocolate bar )



24 ( 2 can of soft drinks + 2 cups of tea with sugar + cookies and cake )