Yin, the water of the body, is both lubricant and fuel. When the Yin is strong all body processes are “well-oiled” and we have a good reserve of fine quality nutrients to build new tissue and repair and maintain our bodies. Both mentally and emotionally we feel that there is plenty of water in the well to draw from when needed.

When the Yin is depleted we have probably been running on empty for quite some time, overdoing it in some way. We may have been ill for a long time or perhaps we were born with a weak constitution. When the Yin becomes low then we begin to burn up, borrowing resources that we can’t replenish. The lack of cooling lubricant may well make us overheat and dry up. We need time to replenish ourselves and rest is vital. We need patience too as this replenishing takes time.

Whereas the key for increasing and maintaning Yang is activity, the key for restoring and supporting our Yin is rest.

When our Yin is deficient we need to avoid foods which stimulate us to use up energy we don’t really have and to avoid foods which will aggravate our tendency to overheat. We should therefore avoid stimulants such as coffee, alcohol and sugar and the overuse of the more heating and pungent spices that release energy from the body.

We need instead to build, the process of ‘anabolism’. Yin tonifying foods combine deep and subtle nourishment with moistening and often cooling qualities. Yin tonics travel deeply into the body replenishing our core and soothing our overworked system.


Apple, Asparagus, cheese, chicken egg, clam, crab, duck, duck egg, honey, kidney bean, lemon, malt, mango, milk, oyster, pea, pear, pineapple, pomegranate, pork, rabbit, string bean, tofu, tomato, watermelon, yam.