The Power of the Stir Fry: Anti-Anxiety Dinner [Eating For the Anxious: Part 9]

Ohhhhh man, do I love me a good stir fry.

Stir-fry meals are one of the easiest ways to incorporate healing vegetables into your diet. They can be made light enough for warmer weather and can be nourishing and filling for the cold winter months. You do not need much kitchen experience to quickly become a stir-fry master. All you really need is a good sautè pan, your favorite whole grain and a ‘go-to’ stir-fry sauce (which I’ve provided).

The ingredients I used for the recipe have special qualities that will nourish and strengthen the SPLEEN and KIDNEY (TCM), these Earth and Water elements of our beings greatly determine our emotional state of mind. According to TCM, if our Earth and Water elements are not in harmony we will experience anxiety and sometimes depression. Eating nourishing, whole foods creates harmony for our organs, directly creating a stable mind.

Lotus Root

The spinach, carrots, lotus root, cashews, mushrooms, brown rice and black sesame seeds make up the bulk of this meal because these ingredients will create an anti-anxiety effect on the body by harmonizing the SPLEEN and KIDNEY. We are aiming to calm the nervous system, receive an abundance of nutrients and help strengthen our organs in relation to the 5 Element Theory.

Brown rice is my bff, seriously, we spend A LOT of time together. I even got her a rice cooker so she can do her own thing while I tend to the rest of the food. This makes our relationship a lot easier with less drama, like hovering over her to make sure she’s cooked right. Did I just personify my rice? Yes, yes I did. I strongly suggest investing in a rice cooker, it is really convenient. It’s one of those things that you will find yourself using WAY more than you thought you would. However, I know not everyone will have a rice cooker so here is a link to cook rice on the stove top.

Remember: Do not forget to clean (rinse in mesh strainer)
AND soak!! (shoot for 8 hours).

Anti-Anxiety Simmer Down! Stir-Fry


  • Serves: 2



  • 1 tablespoon garlic, minced (or less if ya don't LOVE garlic)
  • 3 teaspoons ginger, minced
  • 2 tablespoons maple syrup
  • 4 tablespoons tamari
  • 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 1 tablespoon sesame or olive oil
  • 2 1/2 tablespoons lime juice, fresh
  • 1 tablespoon filtered water
  • optional: 2 tbsp arrowroot flower for thickness


  • 1 cup Brown rice (cooked) [see link above for cooking instructions]
  • 1/4 cup scallion, sliced thin(for garnish)
  • 1/2 cup organic shiitake mushrooms, stems removed and sliced
  • 1/2 cup carrots, sliced into circles or matchsticks
  • 1/3 cup (about 1.5 in.) lotus root, sliced thin
  • 1/3 cup cashews (chop, if desired)
  • 2 cups organic fresh spinach
  • 1/2 cup onion, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon black sesame seeds
  • 1/2 cup red (or orange) bell pepper, sliced


  1. Whisk together all sauce ingredients, adjusting to taste. While brown rice is cooking, chop veggies. Heat oil in pain, add carrots, lotus, onions and peppers. Sautè for 5-7 minutes. Then add mushrooms, spinach, sesame seeds, cashews and stir-fry sauce. Sautè for another 3-5 minutes. Immediately serve over brown rice and garnish with green onions. Enjoy.


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