This week I am covering the affects of different emotions on our internal organs. Much of my discussion has been from an oriental medicine viewpoint. As my training is in Oriental Medicine and Asian bodywork, these discussions are timely for the times. This week I am specifically talked about the Zang Fu organs (heart, lungs, kidneys, liver, spleen, gallbladder, large intestine, small intestine, urinary bladder, and the san jiao (the triple system). Anger was covered in its relationship to the liver, fear in its relation to kidneys.
Today, we will discuss the affects of grief on our internal organs. Grief is the emotion of the lungs and the large intestine. Grief can stay with us for a while, and can go unresolved until we decide to release it. When grief is unresolved and becomes chronic, depression and an inability to ‘let go’ of things can arise from this lung Qi Deficiency.
We have experienced so much loss in these “rona” times. Some have loss their jobs and their abilities to take care of their families. Many have also suffered a loss of life. This can be their own lives or those of friends and family. While many insist that the virus is not real, or that the fears of its impact on our lives is unwarranted, the affects are real for many. While I am fortunate to continue to do some level of work with my business, a major aspect of my business remains closed. When this first started, I couldn’t have fathom how far reaching Covid-19 would be. With all of the loss of life and livelihood in our communities around the globe, anger, and fear, and sadness, if left unchecked, can become grief.
What does grief do?
Grief is a strong, sometimes overwhelming emotion for people, regardless of whether their sadness stems from the loss of a loved one or from a terminal diagnosis they or someone they love have received. Loss of any kind will often trigger a cold, a feeling of being energetically drained, and difficult bowel function. This could eventually interfere with lung function and oxygen circulation. Since our lungs control the flow of energy in our bodies, it’s important that we give ourselves space to deal with painful events rather than stifling them
- A chronic cough
- Shortness of breath
- Tightness in the Chest
- Excessive Crying
- Frequent Colds and Flu (Wei Qi is weakened)
- Skin problems
Grief and Covid-19
As mentioned, there is a lot of loss being experienced as this cover-19 pandemic plays out before our lives. It will be increasingly important for us to find ways to balance our emotions, and to not let it consume us. Granted, it is never easy to handle the unexpected loss of life. Even if we are not directly impacted, our love and connection to our communities can trigger grief. Since Covid-19 is a virus that affects the respiratory system, we should try to manage this emotion. This emotion is directly linked to the lungs. Almost immediately when we experience a loss, we feel as if we are catching a cold.
Some foods that, from a traditional Chinese medicine approach help to balance grief include onion, radish, mustard greens, daikon radish, scallions (white part), almonds, white rice, white beans, white mushrooms, gingko nut, white mustard seed, and angelica root tangerine peels. If we are going through a loss, try to limit and reduce your intake of eggs, dairy, rich, processed or fatty foods that cause congestion.
Everyone handles loss differently, and I can’t recommend one way over another. I can suggest working on strengthening your support system. Just as you may be in need of support, others may have to lean on you for support. Join me tomorrow as we discuss worry and pensiveness.
Disclaimer: I am not a medical doctor, nor intend to present myself as one. I am simply sharing my experience and knowledge from my training and practice. I do offer massage, yoga, and yoni steam services for which I am trained in. Feel free to contact me with any questions you may have.