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Two Immortals

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We are in the depth of Kidney time now and will be for about another three weeks. This is when Kidney energy is supposed to flourish. However, if there's any kidney imbalance now, then those symptoms are more apparent at this time because the Kidneys don't have the energy to flourish.

Kidney energy holds and anchors Qi, Yin and Yang in the body. As the mother of the Liver, if mom is weak, the child doesn't get what it needs. The Liver child throws tantrums and 'goes out' to seek what it wants as a result. Thus, if the kidneys can't anchor the Liver Yang energy, that Yang energy tends to rise in the body. If could attack the Stomach (burping, belching, acid reflux, nausea, alternating constipation and diarrhea), the Lungs (tightness in the chest, difficulty breathing, cough), or rise to the neck, shoulders and head (tight neck and shoulders, headaches, tinnitus) when it usually manifests as disruptive Liver Wind as well (hypertension, dizziness).

In those with Yin and/or Essence Deficiency, this is aggravated even more because Yin moistens and thus, 'pacifies' the Yang. But there's a natural decline of Yin and Essence as we age, and in menopause when the Yin hormones are depleted, this is especially so. Thus, at this time of year, menopausal symptoms can be especially aggravated in those with Kidney depletion.

The formula Two Immortals (Er Xian Tang) is a great formula for menopause, especially at this time of year. It tonifies Yang to support Yin, thus anchoring Yin energy and Yang rising. Yang is function and Yin is substance. They are interconnected and help each other. Function tends to deplete before substance, i.e., function weakens first and then it can't hold or retain substance. Thus, to tone substance (Yin), one also needs to strengthen function (Yang).

Two Immortals does just that. While it seems counter-intuitive to tonify Yang when Yin is depleted, it is important and even necessary to do so. That is what's indicated by the drop of Yang within the sea of Yin in the Yin/Yang symbol.

Because Two Immortals contains some very heating herbs, it is best used by those who also have signs of coldness, feelings of coldness, cold low back and/or knees. If there are severe Kidney Yin Deficiency symptoms, night sweats, five palm heat and so on, only use small doses or substitute Eucommia ulmoides (du zhong) and reduce the dosage of Epimedium.

As a reminder, The Kidneys are depleted by: caffeine, alcohol, sugar, cold foods and drinks, excessive fruit juices, insufficient rest, and excess sex and weight lifting, for starters. Our lifestyles are imbued with these substances and activities.

Two Immortals (Er Xian Tang)

Decoction of Curculigo and Epimedium

Curculigo (xian mao)
6-15 g

Epimedium (xian ling pi)
9-15 g 

Morinda (ba ji tian)
6-9 g 

Angelica sinensis (dang gui)
6-9 g

Phellodendron (huang bai)
4-9 g

Anemarrhena (zhi mu)
4-9 g 

Indications: to replenish the Yin (vital essence) and Yang (vital function) of the Kidney; to purge Fire; to regulate the Chong and Ren channels. For menopause due to Kidney Yin and Yang deficiency and disharmony between the Chong and Ren channels with symptoms of irregular menses, dizziness, tinnitus, cold feet, headache and flaccidity of the muscles.

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