Eastern philosophy considers the inseparable beings of its environment, the earth and the sky. The sky drops electromagnetic energy on the earth in the form of solar rays and other stellar and planetary radiations; This descending energy squeezes the things on the earth, producing contractile effects. In turn, the earth, which behaves like a giant magnet, in its movement generates an electromagnetic field that permeates everything that inhabits it, its force goes from the inside out, producing expansive effects.

We are on earth and act as antennas to collect the electromagnetic forces of the sky and earth that carry our body of vital energy (the Ki of the Japanese or the Chinese Chi).

In the Nei Jing – So Wen, the book of the Yellow Emperor of ancient China (2697-2595 BC), functions are classified as Yang in which celestial forces predominate (descending or centripetal), and as Yin those in which the ground forces predominate (ascending or centrifugal).


In every material substance there is a balance between the forces that hold together their particles (contractile forces) and those that cause them to repel (expansive forces). Those substances in which the contractile forces predominate will be called yang structures and those in which the expansive ones predominate, we will call them yin structures.

YANG STRUCTURE                           

  • Dense
  • Heavy                                                     
  • Contracted
  • Short                                                         
  • Small                                                   
  • Interior   

YIN STRUCTURE                           

  • Low Dense
  • Light
  • Expanded
  • Long
  • Large
  • Exterior

If we eat too much food of Yang structure, we will become rigid (Yang structure), and if we eat too much food of Yin structure we will become loose (Yin structure). If we eat balanced, we will not be too loose or too rigid, we will be elastic and we can adapt to the continuous changes that occur in that flow of energy that is life. However, if we eat food from both ends, some very contractile and others, very expansive, it will be very difficult to maintain the balance. It is likely that some of our structures will break and others will break down.

There are many other aspects of our world that are not material, such as cold and heat or activity and passivity. To classify these non-material aspects we will use a kinetic criterion, the perception of more or less movement. The functions we perceive vibrating with accelerated intensity will be called Yang and Yin slows down.

YANG FUNCTIONS                           

  • Hot
  • Acceleration
  • Activity
  • Fast rhythm
  • Strong vibration
  • Sympathetic

YIN FUNCTIONS                           

  • Cold
  • Slowdown
  • Passivity
  • Slow rhythm
  • Weak vibration
  • Parasympathetic
We all know that the heat dilates the bodies and the cold contracts them. That is, the Yang functions produce expansion in any structure and the Yin functions produce contraction in any structure.
That is why in cold climates (Yin function) root vegetables (Yang structure) are given and in warm climates (Yang function) leafy vegetables (Yin structure) are given.


Consuming animal food produces a contraction effect on the body; Our blood sugar level, for example, tends to decrease more easily. The internal organs contract, become more closed; The skin dries more easily and we tend to feel harder and less flexible. With regard to behaviour, we become more focused, stubborn, aggressive, and more concerned about the material world and the immediate circumstances.

Conversely, a vegetarian diet would act to soften our body and make our mind quieter, calmer and peaceful. A diet composed of foods such as fruits, sugar, milk and frequent raw salads makes our organs grow weak and inactive, blood sugar levels tend to grow too much, tissues and muscles lose their tone and we can become more prone to infections. Our behaviour will tend to be more passive and timid, we will be more disorganized, devoid of discipline and with more concern for the spiritual, psychological, and more distant worlds, theoretical or abstract.

In terms of human health we should naturally seek the dynamic balance between the most contractile and the most expansive food. In practice is what we do when we drink a beer after eating something salty (salt is powerfully contractile, while alcohol is strongly expansive). The same happens when we take steak and ice cream, egg and juice, or cheese and wine.

However, a diet based on such extremes to achieve balance, produces very large fluctuations in our metabolism, and this is a real toll where our health has to stop.


In order to carry out the classification of foods, we will take into account the expansive and cooling (Yin) or contractile and heating (Yang) effects that they produce in the human organism. These terms are metaphorical, the most important thing is to see that they are opposites. For example, if I have a headache from having taken alcohol (expansive) I will be better off taking a salty (contractile) food than a sweet (expansive) one. The expansive or contractile character is always relative, that is, there is nothing, absolutely expansive or contractile, but if there is food that produce more expansion than others.

We could do a classification based on experience, but this is a work of ‘Chinese’, since we would have to study separately the effect of each food. This is a work that the ancient Orientals did and have been passed down from generation to generation.

The expansive or contractile effect of a food depends on its vital energy. If in its vital energy the expansive characteristics predominate, it will produce expansion; And if contractile features predominate in their vital energy, it will produce contraction. Usually, expansive foods cool down and contractions heat up.

The most expansive foods (Yin) that we should not abuse are: drugs, alcohol and, to a lesser extent, ice cream, sugar, honey, fructose, cold drinks, fruits and tropical and semi-tropical juices. Their ingestion makes us feel scattered, depressed and without energy.

The most contractile foods (Yang) that we should also control are: salt, eggs, sausages, cured cheeses and red meats. Their ingestion makes us prone to aggression, bad temper and physical and mental rigidity.


In order to classify foods according to their expansive (Yin) or contractile (Yang) nature, one of the following aspects must be taken into account:

  • Water content, density; the more compact, the more contractile.
  • Place (latitude and climate) where they occur; if they grow to the north they are more contractile than if they grow in the south.
  • Period of growth; if they grow in cold times they are more contractile than if they do in hot times.
  • Speed of growth; those that grow very fast are more expansive.
  • Colour; higher energy colours, higher frequency (violet, purple, blue…) They are more expansive than those of lower frequency, lower energy (red, brown…)
  • Odour; the more penetrating the smell, the more expansive (everything that escapes, is the product of an expansion).
  • Dimensions; the larger forms are the most expansive.
  • Type of growth (root, soil…); everything that grows underground is more contractile than what grows on land.
  • Chemical composition (minerals, proteins, vitamins…); in the expansive vegetable foods the vitamins predominate, and in the contractile ones, the minerals. Minerals are part of the earth, and vitamins are produced in vegetables thanks to the sun.
  • Sodium-Potassium and Magnesium-Potassium Ratio; foods with a high potassium ratio in relation to sodium and magnesium produce a dilating effect on the cells of the individual we ingest. The potato, pepper, tomato, eggplant and tropical fruit group are very expansive foods as they have a very low sodium / potassium and magnesium / potassium ratio, that is, their relative potassium content is high.
  • Shelf life; Vegetable foods that can be stored are more contractile than perishable ones. Decomposition is an expansive pr


The foods listed below are classified comparatively from more expansive to more contractile using the aspects discussed in the previous section.


  •  Drugs and most medications.
  •  Chemicals: preservatives, dyes, insecticides…
  •  Alcoholic beverages: liqueurs, wine, beers.
  •  Vitamin supplements, especially water-soluble.
  •  Refined sugar.
  •  Sweeteners: honey, molasses.
  •  Royal jelly and pollen.
  •  Aromatic and stimulant drinks: tea, coffee, mint…
  •  Spices: pepper, mustard, curry, nutmeg…
  •  Fruit juices.
  •  Oils.
  •  Tropical fruits: papayas, mangoes, bananas, pineapples…
  •  Fruits of temperate zones: cherries, berries, melons…
  •  Milk and cream.
  •  Oil seeds: nuts, almonds, peanuts…
  •  Vegetables of primitive and tropical origin: yeasts, mushrooms, asparagus, potatoes, tomato, eggplants…
  •  Germinated.


  •  Leafy vegetables.
  •  Round legumes: onion, cabbage, pumpkin…
  •  Root vegetables: turnip, carrot…
  •  Algae.
  •  Oil seeds: sesame, sunflower or pumpkin seeds…
  •  Legumes from the hottest areas.
  •  Legumes from colder areas: lentils, chickpeas.
  •  Crustaceans, primitive.
  •  Freshwater fish.
  •  Saltwater fish.
  •  Reptiles.
  •  Birds.


  •  Hard (or cured) cheese.
  •  Mammals.
  •  Eggs and caviar.
  •  Tamari or soy sauce. Miso or fermented soy paste.
  •  Salt.


In general, the contracting foods (Yang), maintain the internal heat, preventing that it is lost, therefore they are calorific.

Expansive foods (Yin), disperse heat, so they are refreshing. When it is hot and we are very dilated, we need to take food or cold drinks, to produce a sudden contraction and feel better.

When we have a fever (internal heat) we should not take very calorific foods like meats, fried, many carbohydrates… The best thing would be to fast.

The effect of spicy species, such as curry, pepper and chilli pepper is hot at first, as they dilate the external capillaries, precipitating the blood to the surface of the skin, causing sweating. When the sweat evaporates, the effect is refreshing.

By excess of salt and Yang in general, you feel first cold and then heat.

By excess of sugar and Yin in general, you feel first heat and then cold.


Fruits are ideal for hot times, after sunbathing or exercising. However, to be able to benefit from them you have to know them a little more.

Some people, the weakest (the most yin), when they eat excess fruit (and for some the excess is just a little), they are not able to remove the organic acids they contain. Cystitis, decreased memory, lack of resistance to cold are some of the ailments that improve when fruits are suppressed or reduced from the diet.

Cooking them or roasting them (apples and pears) can be a solution. When fruits are made into compote or roasted, some of these volatile acids are lost, they become Yang, and are much more equilibrating.

Gases and bad digestions also thank you for your lack of food. When fruit is eaten with other foods of slower digestion, they can ferment in the intestines, especially those that have more concentration of sugars. It is best to eat them alone.

Beware of oranges, they are biliary hypersecretor, and may cause a bad time for those with hepatic-biliary conditions.

Dried apples, pears and chestnuts in the winter. Apples, pears, chestnuts and pomegranates in the fall. Grapes at the end of summer. Watermelons, pears, peaches and plums in the summer. Cherries in spring, etc. Always in moderate amounts and if our body allows it.


In general, the longer the cooking time and more temperature, the more the contractile power of the food increases.The salt used in the cooking of food expels water from the cells so it also contracts.

From less to more contractile:
– Raw. Steamed. Scalded. Boiled. Boiled under pressure. Sauteed. Stewed. Fried. Baked.


According to Eastern philosophy: at the extreme of development, yin produces yang and yang produces yin. This law is also true of food.

When in a continuous way very expansive foods (coolers) are ingested, over time, the body acquires a contractile condition. When in a continuous way food of contractile polarity (heaters) is ingested, with time, the organism acquires an expansive condition.

Expansive foods are balanced with contractile ones, but if the food is extreme, the body passes invoice and problems will appear due to excess of both.

The excess of expansive foods further damages the viscera and the excess of contractile foods further damages the organs.

The organs (kidneys, liver, heart, spleen and pancreas, lungs) are compact and for proper functioning they need to expand, whereas the viscera (bladder, gallbladder, small intestine, stomach, large intestine) are hollow (expanded) forms, And for their correct functioning they need to contract, then return to their initial situation and continually repeat is the swing that nature has imposed.

The information published on our blog is extracted from the Bibliography used for the development of the Sowen Point software.


  • Between heaven and earth: a guide to chinese medicine. (Harriet Beinfield, Efrem Korngold).
  • El Equilibrio a través de la alimentación. (Olga Cuevas Fernández).
  • Timeless secrets of health and rejuvenation. (Andreas Moritz).
  • Holistic health through Macrobiotics.(Michio Kushi con Eduard Esko).
  • Fundamentos de Bioenergética. (Carlos Nogueira Pérez).
  • Tratado de sanación en el arte del soplo. (José luis Padilla Corral).
  • El gran libro de la medicina china. (Li Ping).