Qi and Blood - The Essence Of Life Energy
The relationship between Qi and blood are best illustrated as follows:
- Qi produces blood,
- Qi moves blood around the body,
- Qi holds the blood in the blood vessels, and
- Blood nourishes Qi
In Chinese Medicine, Qi is the commander of blood, and blood is the mother of Qi.
Blood is formed from a mixture of nutritive Qi (Ying Qi), food essence, and body fluids. Chinese believes that blood is important for mental activities. i.e. If qi and blood are strong, the person will be clear thinking and vigorous.
Both blood and body fluids (Jin-Ye) are yin. Body fluids are needed to maintain blood. So any loss of body fluids can damage blood: sweating, for example, can damage blood and lead to deficiency.
In Chinese theory the liver is believed to "store blood", so any damage to the liver is likely to harm blood with weak liver qi leading to blood stagnation.
In traditional Chinese pathologym, there are four major syndromes that can affect blood:
- bleeding or haemorrhage;
- stagnant or congealed blood;
- heat attacking the blood; and
- deficient blood.
In Western terms these four types of conditions equate roughly to:
- bleeding and haemorrhage;
- conditions involving clotting, such as thrombosis, as well circulatory problems and anything involving a build of blood Or related tissue - as in the development of the womb lining before menstruation;
- irritant or inflamed conditions where the skin feels hot; anaemia.
Herbs are used to "move" or combat these conditions. Styptic or coagulant herbs to stop bleeding include San Oi, Xian He Cao (Chinese agrimony, Agrimonia pilosa), Di Yu (Sanguisorba officinalis), Huai Hua Mi, Ce Bai Ye (leaves of Thuja orientalis), and Ai Ye.
Invigorating herbs, such as Chuan Xiang, Yan Hu Suo, Jiang Huang (turmeric, Curcuma longa), Yi Mu Cao (Chinese motherwort, Leonurus heterophyllus), Yue Ju Hua (Rosa chinensis), Chi Shao Yao, and Dan Shen, will move stagnant blood.
Cooling herbs (like Chi Shao Yao) combat heat in the blood, and nourishing remedies, such as Dang Gui, help to build blood and relieve any deficiency.
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