Stomach Cold Invasion is what happens when you let your body be ‘invaded’ by severe Cold.
North China was a cold place for thousands of years. They suffered from cold. In fact, cold was such a problem that one of their most observant doctors eventually wrote a treatise on how cold invades the body. It’s called the Six Stages of Disease caused by invasion of Cold. 1800 years later we still find his theory very useful!
What are Stomach Cold symptoms?
The kind of pain you get with this occurs in the upper abdomen, in your epigastrium, even a bit under your ribs. It comes on suddenly (seldom gradually).
You ask why your stomach hurts when it’s cold! It’s because you let this vital organ get COLD! And it hasn’t recovered. Anything cold makes it feel worse.
It can be cramping or like a heavy weight: often stabbing.
Although caused by cold, some people describe it as burning. You probably stoop forwards and want to hold your abdomen. You’ll want warmth on the area and you’ll prefer a hot drink if you want anything – but you may be too nauseous to face it.
In Chinese medicine, the Cold stops things moving properly. A healthy Stomach should ‘descend’ what you put in it. So when Cold blocks this movement, the contents of your stomach remain there – not a pleasant feeling – or rebel, causing nausea and vomiting.
Because the Cold blocks the action of your Stomach, the energy the food provides doesn’t get to where it is needed, so you feel cold: probably weak and tired too.
You might expect this more in Winter, but it occurs often in Summer, when people get tired or take little exercise and get unfit. Then one day, feeling warm, they sit in a cool draft to cool off, and drink cold drinks.
Not surprisingly, if you have Stomach Cold Invasion, you prefer:
Why did you get this? Well, as explained, you put too much cold stuff inside you or you were exposed to cold. Also, you were probably already a bit yang deficient, which equates in some ways to having a poor metabolism but goes rather beyond that.
NO! … it does NOT have to be a cold day for you to suffer from Cold Invading the Stomach. Eating too many ice-creams and drinking too much cold beer or coke, even on a hot day, might bring on the symptoms, especially if you tend to be yang deficient.
So, on very hot days, when you are very thirsty, take care not to drink too much iced or chilled fluid. Preferably sip it so that your mouth warms it up a bit before it reaches your stomach. Better still, have a warm tea first – to warm your tubes!
What to do about Stomach Cold Invasion?
For several days afterwards, eat or drink only warm, cooked food. Warming soups may be a good idea.
My own Clogstoun Congee is a great idea and very gentle for a delicate stomach.
If it’s food, chew it well, and take your time over it! Your Stomach energy has taken a hit, and since you rely on your Stomach for most of your energy, you’ll be feeling a bit low.
Take time to make friends with your Stomach again by doing the right things for it! – Good, warm, food and drink.
See an acupuncturist/Chinese herbalist: they know exactly the right ways to sort this out for you. He/she may use moxibustion on acupuncture needles in acupuncture points on acupuncture channels.
Your first Stomach Cold medicine is warm food – and avoiding cold food. If you ignore this, probably the following herbs won’t work, or will work only spasmodically.
Click for a selection of hot and warming foods,
Concerning herbs, the following are usually available in shops:
Although acute, this is not usually a serious condition, unless you already have major circulatory problems of yang deficiency. In that case the sudden extra cold could trigger major Heart Yang deficiency, even Blood stasis in your Heart.
However, Stomach Cold invasion can feed through to other syndromes or make them more likely.
Here are various Stomach syndromes (which can also combine with other syndromes):
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