Many cultures have a word that means energy and refers to the bio-energetic field of the human body. Words such as "chi" or "qi" (Chinese/Japanese), "prana" (Indian), and "ruah" (Hebrew) are all understood as the life force (vital to survival) that is part of ALL living things. Knowing our own unique resource of Qi allows us to better understand our health. Qi is broken down into 3 types: Parental, Acquired, and Inherited.
• Parental Qi is considered original Qi which we inherit from our parents; also called “pre-natal” Qi which we acquire at birth. Our parents' health (at conception), our mother's during pregnancy and delivery (mothers who take drugs, under severe stress, live extreme lifestyles, or traumatic pregnancies also contribute low quality Qi), and fathers (men who heavily drink and smoke have low sperm quality) determine the quality of our Qi.
• Acquired Qi is earned during our lifetime; also called “post-natal.” Derived from the food we consume, fluids, and the air we breathe. Poor diets, excessive alcohol, and environmental pollution all contribute to poor health, even if we are born with strong and healthy parental Qi.
• Inherited Qi is associated with the general contribution of our family and explains hereditary genetics and can sometimes skip generations.
Qi, like money is spent, is saved and invested.
• Deposit Account (Parental Qi) is used occasionally in case of emergencies. If it isn’t used (drawn upon) often, the “interest rate” can be very reasonable. Severe usage depletes the inherited Qi (Nest Egg) account.
• Current Account (Acquired Qi) covers our day to day energy usage and fluctuate according to daily needs, being depleted, and renewed often. Constant depletion (overspending) draws form deposit (parental) account.
• Nest Egg (Inherited Qi) varies according to individual lump sum that cannot be added to and, once it’s depleted, you are “broke.” People born with poor inherited Qi suffer from congenital illnesses. Over time, this storage gradually erodes. TCM attributes aging and menopause to such gradual depletion. There isn’t much that can be done about inherited Qi’s levels, but acquired Qi strengthens overall energy levels.
Simply put, we all need to work at keeping Qi at top performance for maximum health. Alterations to our lifestyles, such as taking herbs, are a priority in TCM to treat disharmonies. Of course, there are no good herbs, bur particular herbs can be good for you, especially if it’s the ones needed to address the particular disharmony. Despite the fact that everyone has varying requirements, there are laws of nature that if broken will result in consequences for mental and/or physical health. Sleeping, eating, breathing, and exercise all contribute to our vital life force.