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Monday, February 8, 2016

Yeet Hay - A Practical Explanation

For those who don't know Cantonese, yeet hay literally means "hot air" (I think in mandarin it's huo qi da - "fire air big"). This is a concept that all Chinese people learn from an early age and is prevalent throughout our lives. The interesting thing is that outside of Chinese people, no one has any idea or any similar representation of the concept of yeet hay. I always thought yeet hay was an Asian idea but after many frustrating discussions with my Korean, Japanese and Indian friends, I realize this ideology is exclusively Chinese. Even after a thorough explanation, non-Chinese people just can't relate (I can't understand why!) and even have the audacity to question yeet hay's existence. For those of you who have never heard of yeet hay, you're about to learn one of the most important ideologies of Chinese society.

Yeet hay is a term used in Chinese medicine to indicate a state of being too "hot" (You can also be too cold, wet or dry). Yeet hay, from my experience, is brought upon by eating lots of fried and greasy foods such as potato chips, fried chicken, pizza and barbecue foods. Hot spices, Chinese Hot Pot (Shabu Shabu) and lack of sleep can also cause someone to be yeet hay. The symptoms of yeet hay can vary depending on how yeet hay you are. If you are only slightly yeet hay, you will probably have a slight sore throat and some pimples but if you are overly hay, mouth sores and nose bleeds are not uncommon. The ease with which you can become yeet hay also varies from person to person. Some people are just more susceptible than others in becoming yeet hay.

Now that you know the causes and symptoms of yeet hay, it is only fair to talk about some cures. Chinese philosophy is dominated by the idea of balance so it is only natural that Chinese medicine revolves around the same concept. When you are "too hot" (yeet hay), the cure will be to eat or drink something "cool". The most common drink for balancing yeet hay are "leurng chahs" (literally meaning "cool teas") such as Chrysanthemum tea, "yah-sei mei" (24-flavor tea) and "gum mo cha" (influenza tea). Other cooling drinks include green bean soup, sour plum soup and even beer. A good night's sleep also goes a long way in helping someone who is yeet hay.

For those who never heard of yeet hay until this article, next time you eat something fried and greasy and feel sort of strange, you might just be experiencing some yeet hay. For Chinese readers, feel free to send this article to all your yeet hay doubting friends.

If you know of any other causes, symptoms and cures of yeet hay, please share in the comments section below.

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