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Emotions are natural reactions of humans. Though there is no consensus on an accurate scientific definition of emotions, we can simply describe them as the biological states of the brain. "Biological" means chemicals are released to make the brain and body recognize the emotion. And since chemicals are released into the bloodstream, they may not stay in the brain and could move to other parts of the body. Therefore, emotions have effects on other internal organs as well. Huangdi Neijing (the Yellow Emperor's Inner Classic), an ancient Chinese medical scripture, states that "Joy hurts the heart, anger the liver, grief the lungs, worry the stomach, fear the kidneys." Why is it so? Let me explain.
Joy Hurts the Heart
Joy is a positive emotion. How can it hurt you? Here, the Yellow Emperor means excessive joy. According to Chinese medicine, the heart governs the mind. All mental actions, such as emotions, will first reflect in the heart. Joy can increase blood circulation, relax muscles, and help restore physical energy. Happiness can activate your mind and make you feel refreshed.
However, as the Chinese saying goes, "extreme joy begets sorrow." Excessive joy will damage your heart. Extreme joy will increase heart rate too much that it may trigger a heart attack or myocardial infarction. Benign side effects of joy may include insomnia, forgetfulness, and heart palpitations. Therefore, happiness should be moderate. The right amount of joy is invigorating, but too much of it will hurt the body.
Anger Hurts the Liver
Chinese medicine claims that if the liver qi flows smoothly, the blood is clean, but if the qi is obstructed, the liver is repressed. The liver plays a critical role in the detoxification of the blood. It filters the blood to remove some toxins. When someone is very angry, his liver qi flow will be obstructed, and toxins will be stuck in the liver. He may also feel pain under the ribs. In some extreme cases, anger can cause sudden death. Consequently, we should be forgiving because anger is bad for our health and forgiveness lessens our anger.
Grief Hurts the Lungs
Grief is an emotion closely related to the lungs. When people are sad, they may begin to cry and experience shortness of breath, dry cough, and even hemoptysis. These symptoms will result in less air in the lungs and reduce the oxygen concentration in the bloodstream, which may further cause paleness and weakness. In consequence, Long-term grief will cause hypoxia in the body. The lungs are the frontline of oxygen exchange, so lacking oxygen will hurt your lungs first. It is completely normal to grieve, but we should avoid needless grief and try to be cheerful.
Worry Hurts the Stomach
Worry is to concentrate on thinking about the problem. If you think too much, your mind will become chaotic. Excessive thinking will cause nervous system dysfunction and endocrine disorder, which in turn will reduce the production of digestive fluid. A worried person will likely develop a loss of appetite, insomnia, or excessive dreaming. Food is the source of energy and growth, and most importantly, the protector of the stomach. If one cannot eat well, the surplus of gastric acid will damage the stomach, and gastric ulcers might develop.
Fear Hurts the Kidneys
Fear usually triggers the "fight-or-flight response". This reaction is caused by adrenaline, which is released by adrenal glands, the glands right above the kidneys. Too much adrenaline will result in paralysis or even death. Sometimes people in fear may involuntarily urinate. These are all symptoms of sick kidneys. Chinese medicine considers kidneys the energy center. People who lack vigor or get tired easily often have weak kidneys. Constant fear fatigues people because it damages their kidneys.
The human body is an intricate organism, and emotions are normal functions that we are yet to fully understand. A moderate amount of emotions is only natural and may be helpful for our health, but excessive emotions are harmful and may cause physical diseases or mental disorders. Containing your emotions is beneficial for your overall health. If you find it difficult to cope with your emotions, you can try our frequencies. For example, we have frequencies for anxiety and mental issues. We are sure there is always one suitable for you.
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