The History Behind Why We Eat Yu Sheng During CNY

With its meaning and significance behind it, Yu Sheng has been part of our CNY tradition for a long time. While we tend to practice it, we don’t really understand the history behind it. It’s just something we’ve always done, isn’t it?

Hence, we’ve tried to find out the history behind why we eat Yu Sheng during CNY, and we think that we should let you guys know too.

Legend has it

According to Chinese legend, the goddess Nu Wa spent six days creating animals out of mud, while on the seventh she created humanity.

yu sheng history

Ren Ri, the Day of Humankind, is correspondingly celebrated on the seventh day of Chinese New Year. To celebrate this day, the Chinese hence enjoy a special dish comprising seven symbolic delicacies, which we know as Yu Sheng.

The Art of Tossing

When we eat Yu Sheng, the ritual is to toss the mixed ingredients high in the air with a shout of “Loh Hey!” and other auspicious wishes. This literally means to “move upwards”, a symbol for our fortune to rise and expand in this new year. This is why we stand up and toss the ingredients together. The higher, the better!

Yu Sheng usually comprises strips of raw fish (commonly use salmon), shredded vegetables and other ingredients which are mixed together thoroughly when the dish is eaten. The taste of the dish is enhanced by its special sauce which imparts a distinctive flavour. It is symbolic of good luck, prosperity, health and all things auspicious.

May this year’s Yu Sheng be more meaningful, now that you’ve gotten to know it better!


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