Chinese medicine is the medicine used in Chinese medicine, which is unique to traditional Chinese medicine in China. Chinese medicine is divided into proprietary Chinese medicines and Chinese herbal medicines according to the processing process. In addition to botanicals, animal medicines such as snake bile, bear bile, five-step snake, deer antler and deer horn; mesocosms such as pearls and sea clam shells; and minerals such as dragon bones and magnets are all used in Chinese medicine to treat diseases. A few herbal medicines originate from foreign countries, such as American ginseng.

  What do we need to know about Chinese medicine?

  I. Nature of medicine

  Nature and flavour: refers to the nature and smell of a medicine. It means the four gases and five tastes.

  The four gases, also known as the four properties, refer to the four properties of cold, hot, warm and cool Chinese medicines. Generally speaking, cold and cool medicines have the functions of clearing heat, detoxifying, dipping fire, cooling the blood and nourishing yin, etc., and are mainly used to treat various heat symptoms. Warm-heat herbs mostly have the functions of warming the middle, dispersing cold, helping Yang and nourishing fire, etc., and are mainly used to treat various cold symptoms.

  The five flavours are pungent, sweet, sour, bitter and salty. The pungent flavour has the effect of dispersing the exterior and moving Qi and blood. The sweet flavour nourishes and harmonises the middle, harmonises the medicinal properties and relieves pain. The sour flavour has an astringent and astringent effect. Bitterness has a clearing and draining effect. The salty flavour has a diaphoretic effect, softening hardness and dispersing knots.

  The meridians: the drugs have special effects on certain internal organs and meridians of the body. For example, gentian herb belongs to the bile meridian, which means it has the effect of treating bile diseases; patchouli can belong to the spleen and stomach meridians, which means it has the effect of treating spleen and stomach diseases.

  Ascending, descending, floating and sinking: these are the four tendencies of drugs acting on the body.

  Rising: means rising, lifting, and medicines that can cure the downward spiral of disease all have a rising effect.

  The medicine that can cure the upward trend of the disease has a descending effect.

  Floating: It means light and floating, moving upward and dispersing. Drugs that can cure diseases located on the surface have the effect of floating.

  Sink: means to sink heavily and to drain downwards. Drugs that can treat diseases located in the interior all have a sinking effect.

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