Summer Seasonal Food: Apricot

At Oriental Balance we believe it is important to “Live in Balance with Nature”, but this premise isn’t necessarily something esoteric. It’s actually quite practical.

One thing we strongly recommend is to make the most of seasonal foods. Foods in season bring us all the essence that nature can offer, and are an effective tool for keeping us balanced. Of course they also taste great! Eating seasonal foods is a way of reconnecting with the organic cycle that nature intended for us. For this post we will take a look at the apricot.

apricot

Apricots: The Chinese Medicine Perspective
– Nature: slightly cool, sweet and sour
– Benefits: regenerates body fluids, clears heat, detoxifies, and quenches thirst
– Conditions addressed: dehydration & summer coughs

Nutritionally, apricots are a good source of vitamin A, vitamin C, dietary fibre, and potassium. Vitamin A promotes good vision, making apricots beneficial for eyesight support. Due to their high fibre to volume ratio, dried apricots are sometimes used to relieve constipation; it can take as little as three to feel the effects. Apricots also contain phytochemicals called carotenoids, which are antioxidant compounds that give them their characteristic orangey yellow coloring. These antioxidants may help in the long run to prevent heart disease, reduce “bad cholesterol” levels, and protect against cancer.

Check out this great recipe featuring apricots by Martha Rose Shulman in the New York Times.

Precautions of apricot consumption
Like most things in life, too much of anything can be detrimental. Fresh apricots contain a small quantity of oxalates. People with a history of kidney stones (particularly those attributed explicitly to a build up of calcium oxalate) should not eat too many apricots. Eating raw, especially unripe apricots is also harmful for the body, as it may lead to gastric disorder. We recommend you cook the apricots if you are prone to gastric problems.