Building The Imune System
In oriental medicine, the concept of blood includes understanding the inherent energy within the blood. Blood is created in part from nutrients derived from the digestive tract (spleen, stomach, pancreas, small intestine). Blood is formed when these nutrients are combined with the kidney jing. The body’s jing is stored in the bone marrow, which correlates with the contemporary western knowledge that new blood cells are created in the bone marrow. Cells in the kidney also produce a hormone called erythropoietin that plays an important part in new blood cell production. Thus blood quality may be affected by a long-term kidney weakness. If you have a deficiency of the digestive organs, you will be unable to absorb nutrients properly, even though you may be taking vitamins or iron. Another organ that may be affected is the liver. The liver is where blood is considered to be stored at night in oriental medicine. When there is not enough blood to nourish the liver, you may suffer from a group of symptoms categorized as “liver blood deficiency”.
Remember when we speak of organs in the context of oriental medicine and acupuncture theory we are speaking in terms of prevention. We see conditions in a different light then the traditional medical field, so if we speak of a specific organ deficiency, we mean to say that this organ is not running at 100% rather than a medical concept of an unchangeable pathology.
If your acupuncturist has said you have “blood deficiency”, you may nutritionally build your blood through incorporating these suggestions in your diet.
Grains, Legumes, Sprouts, Green foods, and Vegetables. Most important:
GRAINS AND GREENS!!
- Iron: found in vegetables legumes, grains, nuts, seeds.
- When a variety of these foods are consumed, abundant protein, copper, and B vitamins necessary for iron absorption will be available.
- For the first stages of treating blood deficiency, the richest source of iron is algae, including both seaweeds and micro-algae such as spirulina, and blue-green algae.
- Folic acid: found in micro-algae, sprouts, leafy greens, and chlorophyll rich foods. Folic acid is destroyed when cooked.
- Vitamin B12: sublingual vitamin B12 or B complex (bacteria-derived).
- Royal Jelly: made by bees, this is a special kind of honey.
- Also follow the diet for your diagnosis such as spleen qi deficiency, kidney deficiency and so on.