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Rice Congee: Easy and Delicious Healing Food

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Rice Congee: Easy and Delicious Healing Food

The Chinese call the dish Congee, another name is Jook, a soupy porridge made with rice, water, vegetables and other ingredients to boost longevity, soothe the ill and strengthen the digestive system. It is also known as rice water, and in China it is a traditional breakfast food. In Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) the stomach rules holding the food, while the spleen governs the transportation and transformation of the food. Their ability to work properly is considered so important that the qi energy of the human body rests on the proper function of the spleen and stomach. A bowl of warm rice congee taken for breakfast fortifies the spleen, harmonizes the stomach and is a great meal to start your day.

Here in the West we mostly eat a morning porridge of warm oatmeal topped with milk and a sweetener. However, according to acupuncturist Dr. Bob Flaws, author of The Book of Jook, oats are very moistening to the lungs and due to a diet high in fats, fruit juice, dairy products and sugar, oats are not always the best grain for Westerners already damp condition.

Congee is simple and easy to make. A small amount of grain with 5-6 times more water and a pinch of sea salt. The dish can be made with a single grain, such as rice, or a combination of grains, beans, vegetables, or medicinal herbs. Although it may take some getting used to switching from a sweet to a savory breakfast you will soon notice an improvement in your digestive functions and the consistent level of energy throughout the morning.

Rice congee is beneficial for people with week digestion due to a poor diet or illness. Since it is light and easy to digest it is recommended for those too sick to eat solid foods. In this case first strain the cooked congee and serve the liquid. This liquid food can also be used as a supplement for nursing babies.

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Delia Quigley

Delia Quigley is the Director of StillPoint Schoolhouse, where she teaches a holistic lifestyle based on her 30 years of study, experience and practice. She is the creator of the Body Rejuvenation Cleanse, Cooking the Basics, and Broken Bodies Yoga. Delia's credentials include author, artist, natural foods chef, yoga instructor, energy therapist and public speaker. Follow Delia's blogs: and. To view her website go to


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5:34PM PST on Nov 4, 2014

I will definitely be adding this dish to my diet. However, I don't think oats are that awful especially considering they are condemned for the mere reason that some people dump milk and sugar in it. I don't; and I don't consume sugar, dairy products or bad fats. Oats alone are not the culprit.

11:15AM PDT on Mar 23, 2012

Sounds good. Will try.

7:44PM PST on Nov 11, 2011

heather - i agree and have diabetes ll.

3:48AM PST on Nov 10, 2011

Delicious as well as nutritious.

1:55AM PDT on Oct 26, 2011

I'm sorry, it's a texture thing for me... I don't like rice porridge, and this just doesn't look good. I don't eat watered down oatmeal either. I like mine nice and thick.

8:04PM PDT on Oct 24, 2011

Different and interesting...
Will try someday!
Thank you Delia :)

11:44AM PDT on Oct 24, 2011


6:03AM PDT on Oct 24, 2011

It sounds like a very healthy, comforting meal. I will try it, thank you.

4:50AM PDT on Oct 24, 2011

Thanks, good to know.

9:46PM PDT on Oct 22, 2011

Interesting dish. I will give it a go, as rice is a large part of my diet anyway so new flavours and ideas are always welcome.

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