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Residual Heat in the Diaphragm is a syndrome in Chinese medicine.
It relates to an old disease that was never properly cleared by your body.
Like a remaining pathogenic factor, or a bandit (see below) it sticks around in the form of what is called Interior Heat, doing you no good.
It can make you feel below par, slightly ill, never on top of your game.
Then when you might otherwise be able to resist an illness, this residual heat in the diaphragm weakens your immunity just when it's needed, so you catch the bug anyway.
This interior Heat is what is left over from a previous battle.
That previous battle occurred when you caught a bug of some kind. You probably had chills and a fever - but mostly a sensation of heat - with thirst and all the other symptoms you can read about under Wind-Heat.
What happened next is that either you never quite got rid of it or, more likely these days, you took anti-inflammatory drugs, probably antibiotics. These may have killed the bug, but the Heat your body had generated to kill the bug itself wasn't used as intended, and now it's sticking around and won't go away.
In earlier centuries, in Great Britain, if the country needed an army, men were forced to become soldiers. They were paid as soldiers and sometimes fought and died as soldiers. So they knew about fighting - but also about some of the less desirable habits that soldiers acquire.
Long before social security and the 'caring' state (is there really such a thing?) when the country no longer needed them, it cast them adrift, often with just the clothes they wore.
Groups of these men, trained to fight and kill, had to fend for themselves. Not surprisingly, not all settled into cosy domestic life, jobs and families. They were to be found as bandits roaming the country, causing an affray, disturbing the peace, generally making a nuisance of themselves.
If you think of this interioralised Heat, generated by your body to deal with an invader, but unused and unusable, as being like these roaming and dangerous itinerants, you'll get some idea of what happens.
This Heat is said to take up residence in the diaphragm, just under the heart. From there, like a bandit, it harasses passing traffic and sends raids into heart and stomach territories.
This condition is difficult to cure without professional help. This is because the Heat is so far in the Interior and not in your heart, stomach or intestines. Instead, according to Chinese medicine, it lies in your diaphragm.
What you should NOT do is try to clear the Heat by taking lots of cold or chilled food. This may cool your stomach, worsening your digestion and reducing your energy, but it won't necessarily clear the Interior Heat syndrome.
You may come across research that seems to be dealing with symptoms like this residual heat in the diaphragm, and some of it will suggest heavy and repeated doses of strong antibiotics.(Why? Because doctors tend to think that any symptoms of Heat they discover in the body must be from infection.)
Quite apart from the deleterious and usually cooling effects that antibiotics have on your digestion and immune system and the increasing resistance bugs have to them anyway, it is doubtful if, according the theory of Chinese medicine, such strong antibiotics would be successful.
See a professional acupuncturist or other practitioner of Chinese medicine!
If you live in the Edinburgh area of Scotland, where the author of this site (and of the books described below) works, click on Edinburgh Acupuncturist.
If you live elsewhere, click on BAcC.
Please note! The Kindle editions are less easy to read! Although the paper editions cost more, they are much easier to read and to refer back and forth to the contents and index.
Here are some of the books Jonathan has written:
Still only one comment, though personally I think this is my best book so far.
Published 1986 and, amazingly, still selling. Was apparently used back then by at least one acupuncture college to help students understand Chinese medicine!
No comments yet: just published. (Despite the lurid cover, it explains the five main types of phlegm and what works best for each type. I hope it's easy to read and will be much more useful than all the websites on the subject.)
3000 years of Chinese being stressed, and at last, here's a book showing how all that experience can help you!
By the author of this website, it explains in simple English how to use stress to improve and enhance your life.
NB You can also order 'Qi Stagnation - Signs of Stress' from your bookseller.
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