Eating to balance yin and yang has been the Chinese way of eating for centuries, a concept which later became key to macrobiotics. So what does it mean? Balancing yin and yang is about balancing the energy of food, as opposed to balancing certain food groups. Yang foods are considered to be more heating to the body and dense energetically, while yin foods are more cooling, lighter in energy and with higher water content. The Chinese ideal is to eat both types of food to keep the body in balance.
When analyzing the human body there are many things we could discuss. The Thirtieth Edition of Gray’s Anatomy runs to nearly 1700 pages. And that is just a description of body parts. Textbooks on physiology easily go into the thousands of pages. But what is most immediately relevant to Hatha Yoga practitioners is “How does my body move?” or even more precisely “Why does my body not move the way I want it to?”
In our last article we elaborated why we should make a distinction between Yin and Yang tissues. Yang tissues should be exercised in a Yang way and Yin tissues should be exercised in a Yin way. Muscles are Yang, bones and connective tissue are Yin. Yang muscles should be exercised with rhythm and repetition.