Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM)

Can we use modern science to explain the philosophical concepts of Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) ?


Example 1

The Meridians [經絡] are where the Qi (energy) [氣] flow.

I suppose that these Meridians may be the virtual summation of all the energy fields coursing through our bodies, biochemical, electrical, thermal, kinetic, etc.

They may be the abstraction of (blood) circulation ...etc...

These energy fields are generated as bloodstream flow, nerve impulses fire, digestion processed, wastes eliminated, immunological battles (killing germs), and so on.

Example 2

Each Acupoint (Acupuncture Point) [穴位] along the Meridians has special function. I propose they may be virtual switches to control hormonal and muscular activities. Stimulating these Points, through pressure, needles, cupping, scraping, moxibustion, etc., is like dialing switches, sending various amounts of different hormones to designated cells or organs, to signal them to perform specific functions or to respond to physiological events.

Example 3

TCM views medicine in abstraction. Diseases are caused by an imbalance of Ying and Yang [阴阳] (in terms of the "5 Elements"), which can be roughly translated to an upset of homeostasis or equilibrium.

Example 4

TCM claims that the herb Dang Gui [当归] (angelica sinensis) mobilizes bloodflow. Now modern researchers discover that the herb dilates blood vessels, which in effect, transports blood more readily - different terminology for the same end result.

Example 5

Just as we look up the Periodic Table for atomic weight and properties, we look up the "5 Elements Table" for all aspects of health and medicine.


During the winter months, we should eat more black coloured food (e.g. black beans, shitake, cloud ear fungus) to nourish our kidneys.

  5 Elements draft copy





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Updated: 18/02/11
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