Benefits of Eating Congee Postpartum

Benefits of Eating Congee Postpartum

Congee is a type of rice porridge that has been a popular dish in Asian cultures for centuries.

It’s made by boiling white rice in liquid (usually chicken or vegetable stock) until it resembles a thick soup or stew. The result is a comforting and hearty meal that can be enjoyed as-is, or topped with cooked shredded meat, chopped green onions, diced carrots, and/or sliced mushrooms for extra flavor.

Congee is easy to make and healthy to eat – perfect for postpartum mothers looking for something comforting and nutritious.

Eating congee offers many beneficial health benefits for postpartum mothers.

It’s high in nutrients such as carbohydrates and proteins, which are important for lactation and providing energy during the healing period after childbirth.

Congee is also easy to digest, making it a great food choice for new moms who may be suffering from abdominal or stomach weakness.

Additionally, congee is comforting, warm and delicious – perfect for postpartum mamas who need a nourishing, hearty meal.

Here’s how to make the perfect basic congee:


  • 1 cup of uncooked white rice
  • 4 cups of chicken or vegetable stock
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Any optional toppings you like (e.g., shredded cooked chicken, chopped green onions, diced carrots, or sliced mushrooms)


Rinse the uncooked white rice in a fine mesh strainer until the water runs clear. This will help to get rid of any extra starch from the rice so that it cooks evenly.

In a medium saucepan, bring the stock to a boil over medium heat. Once boiling, add in the rinsed rice and season with salt and pepper to taste. Reduce the heat to low and let simmer for 15 minutes covered, stirring occasionally. The rice should be completely cooked when ready — if not, cook an extra 5 minutes until done.

Serve warm topped with any optional toppings you’d like! Enjoy!

There are a few easy ways to make congee tastier.

You can add different ingredients like sauteed vegetables, tofu, or even cured meats to give your congee a flavor boost. For an extra kick of flavor, try adding herbs and spices such as cilantro, ginger, garlic, scallions and soy sauce. Alternatively, you can also add other condiments like chili oil or sesame oil for more depth of flavor. Adding fruits such as raisins or dates can make the congee sweeter and provide a unique twist on the traditional dish.

Experiment with these ideas and find which combination of ingredients works best for you!

If you are not the cooking type, we have resources that can make life easier. There is a great local place that can dropship soups to eat for easy, nutritional meals. Consider eating Congee in the mornings to start healing your gut. This company makes ready-made packets that you put in a slow cooker. Once you get the hang of it, you can branch out on your own.

Schedule a 15 minute video consultation to learn more about how our team of acupuncturists can help.

Anna Rudel
San Jose Acupuncturist
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Postpartum Congee Recipe

Postpartum Chicken Congee Recipe

Postpartum nutrition is an extremely important part of the mother’s recovery and can be as nourishing and healing as it is delicious.

Qin Zhu, L. Ac. shared another traditional recipe that can be helpful for new mothers.

Why postpartum nutrition is so important:

  • It takes 9 months to grow a baby, after which the body is tired.
  • Labor is physically, mentally and emotionally exhausting. It is important to take the time to heal.
  • Decreased micronutrient stores can increase the risk of postpartum depression.
  • Breastfeeding can place high energetic and nutritional demands on the body.

How you nourish your body in the postpartum period is important, not just for your own health, but also in order to help your baby grow strong and healthy. A healthy postpartum eating plan should include fruits, vegetables, whole grains, protein and healthy fats.

4 secrets of healing postpartum food, according to East Asian Medicine

  1. Eat warm and digestible foods. Soups, congee and stews make great postpartum meals.
  2. Eat a nutrient-dense and anti-inflammatory diet. Think colorful produce, healthy proteins, fats, and certain grains. Try to include different colors in one meal, for example, green leafy vegetables, yellow bell peppers, carrots, red iron-rich protein and brown rice.
  3. Eat collagen-rich foods to support tissue repair. Collagen is a super nutrient for rebuilding tissues, collagen-rich food includes bone broth, skin-on chicken, skin-on sardines or Salmon. Don’t forget about adding some berries and aloe vera juice to your diet too. They help your body build collagens.
  4. Hydrate often. For breastfeeding mothers, 10 to 15 glasses of water a day are required to quench thirst and produce enough breast milk. Plus, the more fluids you consume, the faster your body can rebuild and regenerate.

Below is a traditional recipe for chicken congee.

This rice soup is ideal for new mothers because it includes ingredients that nourish and support the energy of the body. Try to drink this soup at least once a week for the 8 weeks following birth. It is easy to make a large batch and freeze individual portions.


  • 1 cup rice (½ of brown rice and ½ of white rice)
  • 4 cups chicken bone broth
  • 4 cups water
  • 1 cup carrot or broccoli
  • 1 skin-on chicken breast
  • Sesame oil, to taste
  • Salt and pepper
  • Cilantro
  • Black sesame seeds, to taste


  1. Place rice, bone broth and water into a large pot. Cover and bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer and continue to simmer, for 1-2 hours or until rice takes on a consistency of congee. Stir every now and then, adding a bit of extra water if the rice becomes dry.
  2. Cut carrots or broccoli into 1 inch pieces and throw into the congee and boil for another 20 to 30 mins or till the vegetables become soft.
  3. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Pat chicken breast dry, then season with a bit of salt and pepper and a splash of olive oil. Place in a roasting dish and bake for 30 minutes, until the internal temperature reaches 165°F and the juices run clear. When cool enough to handle, shred the chicken.
  4. Season the congee lightly with salt, pepper and sesame oil.
  5. Serve each bowl with a generous handful of shredded chicken, a few sprigs of cilantro
  6. Sprinkle the black sesame seeds on top for taste. Black sesame seeds nourish the reproductive system, build blood for postpartum recovery, and boost milk supply.

Chinese nutritional principles herbs can be very effective in the treatment of postpartum recovery.

If you would like to know more about how acupuncture and herbs can be helpful for you, give us a call for a free 15-min consultation!

Anna Rudel
San Jose Acupuncturist
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Medicated Chicken Soup for Winter

Medicated Chicken Soup for Winter

This winter, why not branch out from a traditional recipe and try this amazing Medicated Chicken Soup?

Chinese Medicine believes that by harmonizing oneself with the seasons you can stay healthier and prevent disease.

Winter is ruled by the water element, the most nourishing and essential substance of life. This season it becomes important we turn our focus on conserving and nourishing our internal strength.

Why medicated chicken soup?

A bowl of warm and nutritious chicken soup is perfect for this cold winter season.

Some of the benefits of drinking the soup include:

  • Strengthening the immune system
  • Improving gut health and digestion
  • Lowering the stressors in the body in order to help speed up recovery from illness
  • Replenishes daily vitamins and minerals

Medicated Chicken Soup Ingredients:

A whole chicken (raw or roasted), the bony cuts give the soup more flavor


  • Ginger: Sliced ginger root is good for settling your stomach and strengthening your immune system. It’s also loaded with antioxidants, which can help you fight diseases and viruses.
  • Turmeric: This traditional Indian spice is not only good for warming up your stomach, it also increases the antioxidant capacity of your body and helps fight with inflammation.
  • Cinnamon: In recent years, modern science has started to confirm many of the potential health benefits associated with cinnamon. It is rich in antioxidants, supports blood sugar control, prevents bacteria and fungus infection.
  • Astragalus root or Ginseng root: These are optional but highly recommended for their healing properties. Both Astragalus and Ginseng roots are beneficial for your immune system, protect against infection, and improve your energy.
  • Mushrooms: Any type or a combination of mushrooms. Such as Shiitake, Reishi, Chaga, cordyceps, Lion’s mane and Turkey tails. They are well liked for their great taste and amazing health benefits. They are a rich source of fiber, protein and antioxidants which helps support gut and heart health, as well as boosts our immune system.
  • Dry red Dates: Dry dates add a natural sweet flavor to the soup. It is highly nutritious, research shows consuming five to seven pieces of dates for 16 weeks helps increase hemoglobin levels in people suffering from anemia.

Adding some vegetables gives the soup extra vitamins and minerals. Such as onions, garlic, celery, carrots, white radish and Chinese Yam.

Finish the soup with a combination of bay leaves, peppercorns, Himalayan salt, rosemary (or thyme), parsley.

How to make Medicated Chicken Soup:

Step 1: Boil the chicken. Place the whole chicken in a large pot and fill it ¾ of the way with water. Bring it up to a boil. If you use raw chicken, pour the water away and replace with clean boiling water. If you start with roast chicken just move on to the next step.

Step 2: Add flavor to the stock. Choose a few or all the herbs recommended above and add them to the pot. Let the stock simmer for about 2 or 3 hours to bring out the herbaceous, healing, and flavorful properties of the homemade chicken stock.

Step 3: De-bone the chicken. Transfer the chicken to a plate and remove the bones, skin, and any other unwanted parts. Just keep the meat separately.

Step 4: Strain the stock. Pass the stock through a sieve to collect all remaining solids.

Step 5: Finish the chicken soup. Transfer the clean broth back to the pot and add in the clean chicken meat and vegetables. Bring it up to a simmer for 15 to 20 minutes.

Step 6: Flavor the soup with seasonings then enjoy!

We hope you give this Medicated Chicken Soup recipe a try, and let us know what you think!

Qin Zhu, L.Ac. worked as an occupational therapist for 17 years before deciding to change her career path. She joined Lokahi in November, 2021 as an acupuncturist. Qin specializes in both fertility and pain management.

Qin Zhu, L.Ac.
San Jose Acupuncturist
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Healthy Breakfast Recipe - “Get them in” Egg & Veggie cups

2 Healthy Breakfast Ideas Your Body Actually Loves

Healthy Breakfast Options

Breakfast can be a challenging meal to navigate with so many different approaches to trying to eat more healthily, from intermittent fasting to keto.

Whatever your approach, the first first meal you choose to eat in a day should be a meal that sets you up for success.

In this blog, we offer two recipes that help you get those fresh fruits and veggies in, support your digestive system and gain beneficial nutrition for your day.

In Traditional East Asian Medicine theory, the digestive system is the foundation for the growth and development of strong energy (Qi) and Blood.

If our bodies are forced to work with less-than-ideal nutrients, then our bodies are unable to make strong Qi and blood, eventually resulting in poor health.

Try these two healthy breakfast recipes as a way of starting your day the right way!

“Get them in” Egg & Veggie cups

According to Traditional East Asian Medicine, a warm breakfast is ideal for your digestion.

In this recipe, we combine eggs and veggies for a nutrient-rich healthy breakfast or snack. The recipe is basically that of a frittata and is infinitely variable according to your tastes. It is an easily adjustable recipe that can help you use up veggies from your fridge, and the little frittatas are great snacks at any time of the day.


  • Avocado, olive or coconut oil
  • 1 cup of finely diced broccoli or cauliflower (or combination of)
  • 1 cup shredded or finely diced zucchini, squash or cooked sweet potato (or combination of)
  • 1 bell pepper – seeded and finely diced
  • Handful of baby spinach or finely shredded kale
  • 8 eggs
  • Pinch sea salt and pepper to taste
  • ½ cup fresh herbs such as basil or parsley, or a pinch of dried oregano

Additions to taste: goats cheese, cheddar cheese, feta, olives, chopped sundried tomatoes


  1. Preheat oven to 400 F and grease a 12-cup muffin tin with your chosen oil
  2. Evenly portion out the veggies into the muffin tin
  3. Either in a blender or whisk in a bowl the eggs, salt, pepper and herbs
  4. Pour the egg mixture into the muffin tin
  5. Top the mixture with any additions you may like
  6. Bake for 12-14 mins. The frittatas are done when the mixture is set and no longer wobbly.

Healthy Breakfast Recipe - Moroccan Turkey and Sweet Potato Breakfast Bake 

Moroccan Turkey and Sweet Potato Breakfast Bake

This breakfast is from Katie Edmonds, NTC, author of The 4-Week Endometriosis Diet Plan, and is a great recipe to help balance blood sugars while getting in a healthy breakfast filled with protein and some greens. Give it a try!


  • 1-2 tablespoons coconut oil
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 1 lb ground chicken or turkey
  • 2 cups greens – collards, kale, spinach – shredded
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • 2 tsp cinnamon
  • ½ tsp turmeric
  • ⅓ tsp ground cloves
  • 1 large sweet potato,  peeled and chopped into 1 inch chunks
  • 1 apple, cored and chopped into 1 inch chunks
  • 3 tbsp raisins


  1. Preheat oven to 400 F
  2. In a large skillet over medium heat, heat the coconut oil. Add the onion and cook for 5-8 mins until translucent. Add the ground turkey, greens, salt, cinnamon, turmeric and cloves. Cook for a few minutes until browned and the spices are pungent.
  3. Add the apple, raisins and sweet potato and mix together.
  4. Turn off the heat and transfer the mixture to a baking dish. Cover with aluminum foil and back for 35-45 mins until the sweet potato is tender.

For more food inspiration, especially if you are suffering from endometriosis, hop on over to Katie’s webpage.

At Lokahi Acupuncture, we look at the whole body. Since our approach is that everyone is unique, asking our patients about their diets is critical. We work with our patients to come up with dietary changes that work with their lifestyle and culture, ensuring that the changes we make are actually sustainable.

Anna Rudel
San Jose Acupuncturist
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