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China. By Jennie Kim and Morgan Kennedy. Introduction. Why we choose China We both have a strong interest in the culture Jennie loves Chinese food, and Korean food, which is a big part of her life, has its roots in Chinese culture.

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By Jennie Kim and Morgan Kennedy

  • Why we choose China
    • We both have a strong interest in the culture
      • Jennie loves Chinese food, and Korean food, which is a big part of her life, has its roots in Chinese culture.
      • Traveling to Hong Kong is on my bucket list! I find the culture intriguing because of the contrast to my culture.
  • Traditional family has a patriarchal authority (1).
    • Eldest son marries and continues living with his parents; younger siblings marry and leave the household.
  • Now, more parents and grown children prefer not to live together but remain near each other.
    • More commonly applies to middle-aged parents.
    • Those who live together do so mostly for economic support and caretaking.
  • Education is highly valued in Chinese families (2).
    • Parents tend to be less satisfied with their child’s achievement level.
    • Teachers are much more important than parents when it comes to their child’s academic performance.
    • Self-improvement, collectivism, group identification
religion background
Religion: Background
  • Confucianism, Taoism and Buddhism are interconnected (3).
  • All three co-exist in one’s life, sets the foundation for a holistic approach to life
religion impact on diet
Religion: Impact on Diet
  • The heightened awareness of life’s dual nature had direct effect on diet (4).
  • Food is believed to have a great impact on one’s balance.
  • Foods are categorized as yin or yang and hot or cold, these definitions can vary by region.
traditional food habits
Traditional Food Habits
  • Eating is a communal affair (5).
    • Family sits together: bowl, plate, chopsticks
    • Share dishes, greet each other
    • Eldest person may take first bite of the meal
  • Staples
    • North: wheat (buns, noodles, pancakes), sweet corn
    • South and East: rice
    • West and Central: sweet corn
  • Frying is the preferred cooking style
    • Other common methods: sautéing, boiling, steaming, braising, smoking, stewing
  • Yin and yang balancing
    • Yin = cold foods (ice cream, watermelon)
    • Yang = hot foods(garlic, chili peppers)
    • Also applies to climate and geographical area
health background
Health: Background
  • Health beliefs and practices are strongly influenced by religious beliefs (4).
  • Emotional state is reflection of health status
  • Holistic approach to medicine
health growing rate of obesity
Health: Growing Rate of Obesity
  • 1992-2002 (6).
    • 50% increase in overweight children (15% to 23%)
    • 150% increase in obesity (2.6% to 6.4%).
  • 2002-2010
    • Overweight 25% to 38.5%
  • 2005-2011
    • 18 million obese
    • 100 million obese
health chinese in the u s
Health: Chinese in the U.S.
  • Increased prevalence of chronic disease of Chinese living in the United Sates verse China (7).
  • The greatest influence of dietary change are food availability, cost and convenience (8).
  • Educational programs should focus on how to make a healthy transition into the Western diet while respecting current cultural beliefs (9).
recipe ants climbing a tree ma yi shang shu
Recipe: Ants Climbing a Tree (Ma Yi Shang Shu)
  • 6 - 7 oz dry bean thread noodle (fen si).5-6 oz lean pork, minced carefully 1/8” pcs.2 green onions, white portion fine mince, greens shredded for garnish2 med cloves garlic, finely minced1 heaping Tab ginger, finely minced1 tsp chili paste
  • Meat marinade:
  • 1 tsp dark soy sauce4 tsp shaoxing wine or dry sherry2 tsp soy sauce1 tsp sesame oil1 tsp cornstarch
  • Sauce:
  • 1 1/2 to 2 CUPS homemade or low sodium chicken stock2 Tab shaoxing wine or dry sherry2 tsp sugar2 tsp salt


history of recipe
History of Recipe
  • Derived from play Injustice to Dou E during the Yuan Dynasty (11).
    • Dou E gets sold to father’s creditor Mrs. Cai to be her daughter-in-law. Dou E becomes burdened by the family after her husband unexpectedly dies.
    • They were tight on money, so she made stir-fried mung bean noodles with ground pork for Mrs. Cai.
    • Mrs. Cai thought the ground pork were ants.
unique ingredient mung bean noodles
Unique Ingredient: Mung Bean Noodles


  • Made throughout Asia
  • No flavor on its own
  • Benefits: fat-free; low in sodium; good source of thiamin, selenium, iron (13).
  • Calorie-dense, calories are mostly from carbohydrates
    • Not the best choice for weight loss
  • Low in protein
nutritional analysis
Nutritional Analysis
  • Carbs = about 70%
  • Fat = about 16%
  • Protein = about 19%
  • Good source of selenium – 46% RDA
  • Good source of thiamin – 38% RDA (15).
  • Very high in sodium!


modified recipe
Modified Recipe
  • Modified to reduce sodium content
  • Switched to low sodium versions of soy sauce and chicken broth and omitted table salt
  • Modifications resulted in a reduction to sodium to 32% RDA (15).


counseling tips
Counseling Tips
  • Birth place and level of acculturation should be considered (4).
    • Yin and yang concept
    • Use of Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM)
  • Communicate in formal manner with unrushed dialogue
    • Introductions: nod or slight bow
    • Use of titles signifies respect
    • Maintain personal space
    • Explain symptoms and origins of condition in detail and in understandable terms.
    • Women may be especially modest.
  • Consult with family members first if possible
  •  1. Logan JR, Bian F. Family Values and Coresidence with Married Children in Urban China. Social Forces. 1999;77(4):1253-1282. Accessed February 13, 2013.
  • 2. Chen C, Uttal DH. Cultural Values, Parents' Beliefs, and Children's Achievement in the United States and China. Human Development. 1988;31(6):351-358. Accessed February 13, 2013.
  • 3. Confucianism [DVD]. Films Media Group,1996. Accessed February 22nd, 2013.
  • 4. Kittler PG, Sucher KP, Nahikian-Nelms M. Food and Culture. 6th ed. Belmont, CA: Wadsworth; 2012
  • 5. Duru HI, Wang T, Odhianbo LA. Chinese and Kenyan Food Culture-Information for Health Care Personnel in Finland. Turku University of Applied Sciences. 2009:12,19-20,35-36. Accessed February 13, 2013.
  • 6. Wu, Yangfeng., Huxley, Rachel., Li, Ming., Ma, Jun. The Growing Burden of Overweight and Obesity in Contemporary China. CVD Prevention and Control. 2009; 4(1):19-26.
  • Accessed February 13th, 2013.
  • 7. Nan Lv, J. Lynne Brown. Chinese American Family Food Systems: Impact of Western Influences. Journal of Nutrition Education and Behavior. 2010; 42(2): 106-114. Accessed February 13th, 2013.
  • 8. Satia, Jessi A., Patterson, Ruth E., Taylor, Vicky M., et al. Use of Qualitative Methods to Study Diet, Acculturation, and Health in Chinese-American Women. Journal of the American Dietetic Association. 2000; 100(8): 934-940. Accessed February 13th, 2013.
  • 9. Lv, Nan MS; Cason, Katherine L. PhD, RD. Current Dietary Pattern and Acculturation of Chinese Americans in Pennsylvania. Topics in Clinical Nutrition. 2003; 18(4): 291-300. Accessed February 13th, 2013.
  • 10. Sinclair J. Traditional Chinese Recipes. Accessed February 10, 2013.
  • 11. Travel China Ants Climbing Trees (Vermicelli with Spicy Minced Pork). Accessed February 14, 2013.
  • 12. USDA SR-21. Noodles, chinese, cellophane or long rice (mung beans), dehydrated. Accessed February 13, 2013.
  • 13. Whittemore F. Updated June 14, 2011. Accessed February 13, 2013.
  • 14. Accessed February 10, 2013.
  • 15. Thompson, Janice & Manore, Melinda (2012). Nutrition: an applied approach (3rd ed.). San Francisco, CA: Pearson Benjamin Cummings.