Five natural elements and food flavors. According to traditional Indian and Chinese medical systems, the human body is made up of five natural elements: fire, earth, air, water, and wood (the sky), and the body requires these elements to grow, heal, function, and stay healthy. The majority of the natural elements that the body produces come from foods, and some are obtained from nature.
There are six basic tastes in food, and each one has a natural component. Sweet foods provide the earth element; sour foods provide the wood element; spicy foods provide the air element; salty foods provide the water element; and bitter and astringent-tasting foods provide the fire element.
Each natural food contains all six tastes and five elements, but we can only perceive the taste that is most abundant. When an apple is ripe, it tastes sweet, but it also contains trace amounts of sour, spicy, salty, bitter, and astringent flavors, which we can detect when the apple is unripe. When the five elements of the body are out of balance, the body cannot function properly and becomes ill.
Only natural foods, such as vegetables, fruits, honey, grains, and so on, contain all five natural elements in their entirety. When those foods are cooked or processed, they lose some of their natural elements. Most traditional Indian meals contain all six tastes. Some foods have five tastes, and our forefathers completed the six-taste wholesome meal with betel leaf and other side dishes. We must incorporate all six tastes into our daily diet in order to live and stay healthy.
Most people prefer sweet, sour, spicy, and salty flavors while avoiding bitter and astringent ones. Food with a bitter and astringent taste is beneficial to the heart, blood, immune system, and other organs. Please eat more bitter and astringent-tasting foods and fully six-flavored foods at least once a day.