Heart disease according to Traditional Chinese Medicine
Modern Medicine has many sophisticated devices and tests available to help doctors determine if a heart attack may be imminent. Unfortunately, even with the most sophisticated medical technology available today, cardiologists cannot accurately predict heart attacks. How does Traditional Chinese Medicine treat heart disease?
Western medicine approach to heart disease
Treatment for chest pain often includes the use of aspirin or blood thinning drugs. Angina attacks are treated with medications such as beta blockers or calcium channel blockers. A catheter with a balloon on its tip (angioplasty) may be used on a segment of an artery that is constricted. Coronary artery bypass surgery may be performed if the left main coronary artery is blocked or if several major arteries are diseased.
But we all know those methods have risks and further medical consequences. Does TCM have better solutions for chest pain (Heart disease)? Yes, we do!
The heart according to Traditional Chinese Medicine
Traditional Chinese Medicine believes that the heart is like a water pump. There are only three reasons for this water pump to fail: The first is whether the energy needed to run the pump is sufficient. The second is the internal diameter of the pipe connected to the pump: if the pipe is too wide, then the resistance and pressure of the water being pumped out will be too weak. On the contrary, if the pipe is too narrow, then the resistance and pressure will be too high, and this increased resistance will burden the pump.
Over time, this could cause the pump to develop problems. The third point is, if the pump's water is diluted or thick. If the water has many impurities and is more viscous, the pump needs more power to work. If the pump has been working with maximum power for a long time, it is easy out of order.
The supply of energy to the heart is blood, and the heart also pumps blood out. When the supply of blood to the heart continues to decrease, there will be palpitation, fatigue, and weakness.
When stressed, the heart will use pain to tell you that the heart is malnourished. If arterial plaque buildup and hardening of the arteries is significant, then the open space in the blood vessel will become increasingly constricted, and the heart will have to exert more effort to pump blood throughout the body. If the heart is overworked for prolonged periods, then it may try to rest momentarily through irregular and skipped heartbeats. If there are many impurities in the blood (which in TCM, means too much cold, dampness, or phlegm in the body), the blood will become heavy, clotted, and astringent, and flows more slowly.
Undoubtedly, it is more difficult for the heart to pump this kind of impure blood than clean blood. Furthermore, according to the principle of heat-induced expansion and cold-induced contraction, the blood vessels will contract when it is cold, and this too will increase the burden on the heart. If these stressors are allowed to affect the heart for a long time, the heart will eventually become completely exhausted, and a heart attack can easily occur.
Lifestyle contributes to heart disease
People nowadays have unhealthy dietary and living habits. Therefore, from the TCM point of view, these unhealthy habits easily cause an excess cold, dampness and phlegm in the body, and so the burden on the heart increases. That is why heart disease is very common in modern people.
Fortunately we can use Chinese herbal medicine and acupuncture to solve heart problems.
Traditional Chinese Medicine treatment for heart disease
Chinese herbal medicine can help supply the energy needed for the heart's work, expand the internal volume of the cardiovascular system, and also strengthen the metabolism of the body so that the impurities in the blood diminish and the blood will not be too viscous.
Though Modern, Western medicine also has blood thinners to reduce blood viscosity, do you know what the side effects of blood thinners are?
They seriously inhibit blood coagulation, so that if someone experiences bleeding, internal or external, it is difficult to stop the bleeding. Even small wounds can become difficult to control. More seriously, internal bleeding could become quite serious before any steps could be taken to stop it –a genuinely life-threatening situation.
Traditional Chinese medicine reduces the amount of impurities in the blood by strengthening the body's metabolic functions, so there are absolutely no side effects.
Acupuncture is also very helpful for heart disease. It can allow the Qi in the heart-related meridians to flow smoothly. In TCM theory, Qi can lead the blood, so when Qi flows smoothly, it will also help the blood flow smoothly. Thus blood circulation will improve and the arteries less prone to blockage.
In mainland China and Taiwan, there are many patients with heart problems every year who are cured by taking Chinese herbal medicine and acupuncture.
Would you like to talk to our doctor and see how TCM can help you? Book a free diagnosis now at our practice in Zurich-Wiedikon!