Life is a heat process.
From a strictly chemical view point, almost all reactions in the body are heat driven, from the formation of proteins and ATP (the fuel that runs the body), to the ability of your lungs to absorb oxygen from the air. Without heat, many processes slow, or outright stop.
From a psycho-spiritual perspective, when we think of various descriptors that have been applied to people throughout time we see reflections of the understanding of how important heat is. Sayings like ‘they’re cold hearted’, or calling someone ‘frigid’, or referring to an action as ‘cold’ are all examples of acknowledging a lack of warmth in someone. Conversely, we describe people as ‘warm’ to express their caring nature, or an action giving you the ‘warm fuzzies’, or even ‘hot’ to express sexual desire. When our ability to generate warmth declines, we can begin to feel separated from those around us. Our ability to acknowledge the warmth of another can diminish proportionally to our own diminishing warmth.
Physically, warmth is most prevalent in the digestive system, where a lack of heat will lead to a decrease in our ability to derive nourishment from our food and, because the body tends to store what it cannot use, an increase in body mass. A lack of heat in the digestive system can lead to difficulty taking in new ideas and information. Also, as heat is necessary to move the bowels, it can make it harder to let go, physically, mentally, or emotionally.
Ironically, because heat is generated by both the breakdown of food and the use of those nutrients by the muscles, our diet has a major influence on our overall temperature.
In Chinese Medicine, the primary organs of digestion are the […]