The Spleen has a wide range of functions, from digestion to muscle tone to sensuality. The Spleen manufactures Qi from our food. The Spleen’s role is to transform and move foods, liquids, and thoughts in the body (i.e. digestion). For this reason the Spleen is called the source of postnatal energy (acquired Qi). It has a primary role in the lymphatic and immune systems. It keeps our tissues, muscles, and thoughts moist, supple, adaptable. The Spleen governs taste and true nourishment. It regulates bio-rhythms including menstruation. The Spleen stores Yi, consciousness of potentials, the ability to focus the mind sharply and keenly. A healthy spleen requires a stabile home environment. The Spleen harmonizes upper and lower parts of the body. Worry and over-thinking are the greatest causes of Spleen depletion.
The Spleen is the largest lymphatic organ, and plays an important part in the body’s immune system, by helping it to recognize foreign invaders. The spleen is responsible for the removal of old red blood cells and the production and storage of white blood cells (lymphocytes) which cleanse pathogenic bacteria from the blood. The spleen is functionally equivalent to a large lymph node with a focus on cleansing our blood and aiding immunity.
The Spleen System:
Includes the Spleen, Pancreas, Stomach, Digestion, Endocrine System, Thymus, Nervous System, Muscles & Flesh, Sense of Taste, Lips, and the Lymphatic system.
Spleen Consciousness Issues:
Worry, Thinking, Adaptability, Subconscious Mind, Digestion, Nourishment, Abundance, Receiving, Self-Love, Self-worth, Cleansing, Purification, Confusion, Clarity, Rhythms, Protection, Integrity. The Spleen houses the body’s thoughts and intentions (Yi), and is responsible for sharp analytical thinking, memory, cognition, intelligence, and ideas.
Common Patterns of Spleen Imbalance:
Chronic fatigue, Alzheimer’s, dementia, diabetes, obesity, exhaustion, stress, worry, muscle weakness, abdominal bloating, over-eating, irregular meals, avoiding protein, mental stress, over-thinking, failure to relax at mealtimes, nightmares, edema, cold hands & feet, too much standing, craving cold or raw food, easy bruising, dizziness, pale complexion, mental sluggishness, vaginal discharge, sleep-walking, mental exhaustion.
The Spleen’s Best Friends:
The Spleen is associated with the Earth element, like a Mother. So it’s easy to remember that the Spleen loves warm food, a stable home environment, calm eating habits, regular mealtimes, a comfortable daily routine, chewing food well, doing one thing at a time, mindful living, take a break and do nothing, eat warm broths and soups, enjoy lightly cooked vegetables.
Spleen System’s Worst Enemies:
The spleen is disturbed and destabilized by cold food and drink, iced drinks, raw foods, overeating, sugars, sweets, glycemic foods, processed foods, irregular mealtimes, chaotic schedule, worry, thinking too much, and multi-tasking.
The Spleen is frequently damaged by coffee. Caffeine acts as False Qi, which can lead to high blood pressure, agitation, depression, and heart palpitations. Just 1 cup of coffee per day may take years for negative effects to show up.
Important Spleen Points:
SP-21, Great Luo – In front of the arm about a hand width below the armpit. Usually tender, exacerbated by bra under-wires. Helps to balance left-right sides of the body and brain. This point connects to the pancreas, liver, and digestive system, so it helps to stabilize blood sugar levels, digestion, and PMS symptoms. SP-21 relates to our ability to receive unconditional love from our mother as a child, and to receive love from the universe as an adult.
SP-6 crosses the Spleen, Kidney, Liver meridians, so it can treat LOTS of issues. Here are a few examples: Digestion, premature ejaculation, impotence, penis pain, testicle atrophy, incontinence, edema, painful urination, diarrhea, Vitamin B1 deficiency, muscular pain, insomnia, headache, gynecological issues, sexual, emotional conditions, PMS, irregular or missing periods, vaginal discharge.
Stimulating SP-6 strengthens the Spleen and Stomach, dissolves dampness, harmonizes the Liver, strengthens the Kidneys, nourishes Blood and Yin, regulates menstruation, cools and invigorates the Blood, vitalizes the urinary system, and calms the Shen – Spirit.
The Spleen Source Point is SP-3, Taibai meaning Great White. Massaging or needling this point helps to regulate the Spleen and Stomach, balances Qi, Drains and resolves damp heat (congestion). Us it if you feel gastric pain, abdominal bloating, sluggishness, a damp stuck feeling, mental obsessions or cloying (can’t let it go), constipation, or diarrhea.
The Sp-3 point is critical for posture, standing straight and upright on healthy arches. Without the support of SP3, we tend to sink and wither in the chest and diaphragm. Therefore SP3 represents our ability to rise and lift up the Yang.
The Source point on a meridian is that point which most closely exemplifies the function of the entire meridian.
To Balance the Spleen Channel:
Set a clear intention to build health. Start at the outside tip of the big toenail SP-1, along the inside of the foot to the arch, up in front of the inner ankle to SP-6. Continue up the inner leg, just behind the bone, crossing the knee up the front of the thigh to the groin, criss-crossing the lower abdomen, to the front center CV Ren Mai meridian, up the suspender route around outside nipples to the collarbone, neck, and ending under the tongue, an internal point.
You may optionally trace the internal path that moves from the navel area up to the heart and ends just under the tongue. Trace both together, or one side at a time.
To Clear the Spleen Channel:
Set a clear intention to build health. Trace backwards once, starting at the tip of the tongue, down the neck to the clavicle, around the chest outside of the nipples, crisscrossing the abdomen to center or RenMai Vessel to the groin, and down the inside of the leg to the tip of the big toenail. Trace both sides together or one at a time. Then trace forward 3 times as indicated above, both sides at the same time or one after the other.
Sweet is the flavor of harmony, associated with the Earth Mother. If the spleen is in distress, sweet flavors can harmonize and benefit central Qi. However if sweet foods are used excessively, they will produce phlegm, obstruct transformation, and harm the flesh, leading to swelling, bloating, obesity, and diabetes.
“Sweet generates the spleen.”… “Hence if a disease is in the flesh layer, one should abstain from excessive consumption of sweet flavors.” Huangdi Neijing, 2,700 BCE