Strong, free flowing energy is crucial to overall health. You can have a strong circulatory, respiratory and digestive system, but, when energy is blocked or congested, disease, pain and emotional imbalance can still be the result.
For example, a person whose lung meridian is blocked may experience chest pain or frequent bouts of bronchitis. Treating the symptoms may offer relief, but addressing the cause of the blockage and opening the lung channel may be a more effective, and longer lasting approach to the physical symptoms.
And while meridian opening exercises such as tai chi and body tapping
help you channel your Qi, herbs can also help improve and support the movement of Qi, as well as your physical body’s circulation and metabolism.
You can use these five herbs to accumulate, circulate or increase your Qi for a vibrant complement to meridian opening exercises
Mugwort is a small plant of the daisy family with leaves similar to ferns. When drunk as a tea, it helps release and realign tight connective tissue, making it a useful aid to massage therapy and other body work.
The plant has been used in Chinese medicine to increase blood circulation to the pelvic area and uterus for centuries. It also works synergistically to strengthen the flow of Qi.
Mugwort, whose Latin name is Artemisia vulgaris, is used for moxibustion. The dried leaf, or moxa, is burned momentarily on, or close to, the skin to warm up meridian points during acupuncture.
Astragalus belongs to the legume family and is a small shrub. Astragalus root is helpful for digestion and joints, especially the knees.
Fluid stagnation can cause pain, swelling and lethargy that restricts, not only our physical range of movement, but also blocks our energy channels. As an astringent and diuretic, astragalus draws off fluid buildup from swollen tissues, regulates fluid metabolism and promotes fluid circulation.
It is also an adaptogen, meaning it helps your body adapt to stress and regulate body systems to ward off illness during times of stress.
Astragalus has also been used in traditional Chinese medicine as a restorative tonic that helps improve energy.
Cinnamon comes from the bark of the cinnamon tree and has a long history for use as both a spice and as medicine. Its essential volatile oil contains compounds that make it a good anti-clotting agent, has antimicrobial and antifungal properties, especially for Candida or yeast, and as a blood sugar regulator.
Cinnamon has circulation enhancing properties that are useful for everything from regulating blood sugar to sexual function.
Because it slows the rate at which your stomach empties after a meal, cinnamon also helps control appetite, reduce blood sugar and may even improve insulin response for people with diabetes.
Turmeric is gaining popularity and respect as being a true hero of the body. From immune system booster to antioxidant to anti-inflammatory, turmeric’s benefits are a wonder.
Turmeric is the main ingredient in Indian curries. Its bright yellow aromatic powder is from the ground root of the turmeric plant. It is part of the ginger family. Its main healthful ingredient is curcumin, which gives it its yellow or orange color.
Curcumin compounds help promote your immune system, help in digestion and support healthy bones and joints, making it excellent for arthritis and other inflammation. It can also help you maintain normal cholesterol levels and promotes healthy blood and liver function.
There are even herbs for heartbreak. When you’re heart is closed off from hurt it can affect your energy circulation just like a physical malady. When you’re sad, it’s important to keep your immune system supported, keep your digestion strong and to get enough sleep.
Hawthorn berry comes from the thorny hawthorn shrub and is from the rose family.
Heartbreak includes any kind of loss or grief one may experience, from a bad breakup to the death of a loved one. Herbs like hawthorn berry, elderberry, valerian and skullcap are calming and support an immune system that may be compromised by the stress of grief.
Use these herbs as tinctures, tea or as a zesty addition to any meal. You’re sure to open up to new sensory awareness, improved sleep, better digestion and a stronger life force.
This information is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Always seek the advice of your healthcare provider with any questions about your medical condition.