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Table 1 Summarizes the key foreign food ingredients that have been integrated into the traditional Chinese food culture

From: Analysis of the health effects of the transition of traditional Chinese food on the emergence of nontraditional eating behaviors

Foreign food ingredient integrated in Chinese food culture Culture original source
Goat, sheep, and various fruits and vegetables Western and Central Asia
Sweet potatoes varieties and peanuts Transported by mariners from Central and South America
Champa rice, drought-resistant rice introduced to the southeastern coastal Fujian Province Transported from India
Coriander, onions, peas, and sesame seeds Imported from Bactria, an ancient region in Central Asia
Pomegranates, lima bean, watermelon, muskmelon, carrot, fennel, grapes, celery, and other spices Came to China through the Overland Silk Road from Central Asia into the Xinjiang Uygur territories in western China (Fig. 1)
Cucumber Entered China from Western Asia during the Han Dynasty
Red hot chili peppers Transported Portuguese sailors through sailing the Indian Ocean
Almonds, figs, sugar beets, spinach, and lettuce Introduced by traders and migrants from the Middle East, Western, and Central Asia