Dr. Q-Baek Whang
158 Front Royal Pike, Suite 103
Winchester, VA 22602
(540) 535-0083
(540) 535-9330 (Fax)
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Spleen Qi Deficiency & Dampness

Internal dampness often comes from an energetic weakness of the spleen and Stomach. The Spleen in Chinese Medicine is associated with the strength of the digestive process. Spleen Qi controls the blood, nourishes muscles and limbs, and is the seat of the intellect. The Spleen and Stomach together facilitate transformation and transportation of food and water. If there is a weakness or imbalance between these two organs, proper assimilation does not occur and buildup of dampness is a possible outcome. This energetic weakness, Spleen Qi deficiency, is due to people being poorly nourished either through lack of good food or more commonly (in the U.S.) from eating a diet of refined and highly processed food.

The signs of dampness are as follows: a heavy feeling of the body, distended band-like headaches, diarrhea, nausea, vomiting, general lassitude, inability to discern tastes, and chronic phlegm conditions (i.e., sinus problems, recurrent earaches). Essentially, body fluids are not being transformed because of this weakness of the Spleen.

Acupuncture and herbs play an important role in strengthening and harmonizing the Spleen and Stomach. Without appropriate changes in diet, it is next to impossible to resolve an internal damp accumulation. Therefore, limiting or eliminating certain foods can help to maintain health and also enhance the therapeutic effects of Chinese Medicine.

For children prone to coughs and colds with phlegm and mucus buildup, careful attention to diet is particularly important. One of the major causes of mucus in children is "junk food." Be selective about the foods your children eat, especially sugar and milk products. The excessive sweetness of sugar damages the Spleen Qi (vital energy) and milk causes an excess buildup of mucus (dampness). If parents notice, for example, that their child’s stools are loose or go from well-formed to loose, it may indicate a weak-ending of the Spleen energy. If it continues, parents may notice the child’s nose will begin to run. This indicates a mucus buildup and indicates the need to make appropriate dietary adjustments from dam-producing foods to more dam-clearing foods.

Foods to avoid for Spleen Qi Deficiency and Dampness

* All dairy (milk, cheese, yogurt, ice cream)
* Sugar
* Peanuts
* Nut butters
* Fruit Juices
* Eggs
* Fried foods
* Chilled or frozen foods
* Wheat

Foods that dry Dampness

* Rye & Amaranth
* Corn
* Aduki beans
* Millet
* Celery & Lettuce
* Pumpkin
* Winter squashes
* Turnips
* White Pepper
* Barley
* Chicken (not fried)
* Radishes
* Button mushrooms
* Scallions
* Garlic
* Onion