“When white radishes are in season, doctors should take a break.”

– Ancient Chinese proverb.

As one may discern from this Chinese proverb, the unassuming daikon radish (along with its cousins, the black or red radish) has long been considered a superfood in many Asian cultures because of its ability to re-balance the digestive system, boost the immune system, and gently cleanse the body. These properties are famously useful for addressing side effects of chemotherapy or radiation cancer treatment!

Other important benefits of radish include its ability to prevent cancer, reduce inflammation, strengthen the respiratory and immune system, facilitate weight loss, improve bowel function, reduce risk of heart disease, regulate blood pressure and hormones, and strengthen bones (little known fact: radish is rich in calcium).

We’ve chosen this root vegetable to be on our shopping list for our upcoming Taoist seasonal super-cleanse not only because of its unique ability to support the body during the process of receiving, releasing, and lightening up, but also because of its spicy essence and white color, the taste and color associated with supporting the energy of autumn and its corresponding organs, the Lung and Large Intestine. These organs also energetically support the “letting go” process of our body, mind, and spirit!

Daikon radish is available in most Asian marts and some supermarkets, as well. Choose one that is firm, heavy for its weight, and not too large. If you can’t find daikon, then choose its cousin, red radish, which are readily available in most grocery stores.

The following recipe is an easy way to add some radish into your diet: cut a 4 inch long section of daikon (or about 5-6 red radishes) into semi-circle slices or small cubes. Quickly saute some diced garlic and chopped scallion whites in hot oil and a dash of salt, then add the cubes or slices, stir-fry for about 2-3 minutes, add a little water if it begins to stick. Add a bit of mushroom powder to taste for flavor. Best served piping hot, it will still be crunchy when it’s at the height of its flavor!

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6 Responses to Daikon Radish: An Asian Superfood for Health
  1. I just received black radish in my CSA share. Can I use this in the recipe above for the fall cleanse?

    • Thanks Janine, black radish is awesome!

      • Hello. I’m very thin and whenever I’ve had acupuncture in the past, they always needle my GB34 and other related points — almost every time for years. Unfortunately that low-income clinic closed several years ago.

        I’ve been told by someone else to take ‘Spanish black radish’ so that I can tolerate fats in my diet better. I just read on another site that it’s has both the obvious ‘pungent’ taste but also a “strong bitter nature” and is considered “our heat-clearing agent.”

        Do you think this would be okay to take for someone who is quite thin, dry — one of my last diagnoses was “yin deficient, resulting in liver fire rising”.

        It’s so frustrating because if I could eat more fats I’m sure I wouldn’t be so dry — and so thin! 🙂

        Thank you in advance.

        • Dan,

          Our take on any issue that arises in the body is that the body is out of balance. Often what we think of as the issue may only be the covering to the root cause. We always suggest a daily practice of the Four Energy Gates, which you can find on Taoofhealing.com. These gates are on powerful energy intersections, one of which is the GB line, and support the body in it’s effort to rebalance itself. Going the food route is a much slower process. Using Qigong in this manner will be a great way to support your imbalances. You might give some thought to eventually participating in a Dragon’s Way program as well.
          Good luck to you

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