Chinese people believe that we are surrounded by five energy fields or five different kinds of “chi” (氣). These are also called the “Five Elements” and they play an important role in all aspects of Chinese culture, including the way people eat.
This theory states that if these five elements are changed or moved, this could seriously affect a person’s fate.
If the concept of Yin and Yang is the center of the Chinese culture, then the theory of the “Five Elements” should be treated as its cornerstone. But what exactly are the five elements of Chinese cooking and how do they play a part in Chinese cuisine?
The five elements are: Metal, Wood, Water, Fire and Earth.
It’s just like finding the perfect balance yin and yang, it’s about trying to find the perfect balance between the five elements.
The Five Elements In Chinese Cuisine
Chinese herbalists and doctors believe that to properly treat a patient, you must know the state of the five elements in their body. Any deficiency or an excess of an element can lead to illness.
The five elements also represent our five main organs: