Why is 'blood' so important in Chinese Medicine?

In TCM, blood is considered to be one of vital substances we need in order to survive. Not only does it carry vital nutrients to the body (like oxygen and glucose), it carries all the nutrition we need to nourish ever part of ourselves physically and mentally.

TCM - How is blood made?

The good food and drink we consume is transformed into food essence by our stomache and spleen, this food essence is then sent upwards to combine with the air qi in our lungs and finally this combination of food essence and air qi is sent to the heart where, with a little help from our kidney fire, it is turned into blood. This is why diet and lifestyle are so important to your health; healthy blood depends on good nutrition and clean fresh air!

Why is blood so important?

Blood is a yin substance that nourishes and moistens our whole body. It also provides the foundation for our consciousness; the Chinese say that the blood 'houses the mind' so healthy blood is vital for clear thinking, good memory, good mental health and even a good night's sleep. Blood is essential for healthy skin, muscles and tendons; it's what keeps our muscles subtle to allow movement and flexibility and our eyes moist and bright.

Women need healthy blood in order to have regular, pain-free periods. It is especially important for women to support their blood

An extra special form of blood, known as tian gui, nourishes the uterus. A healthy reproductive cycle is dependent on


Deborah Tanguy BHSc, MBAcC
Lead practitioner at Wholebody Acupuncture and a registered member of the British Acupuncture Council with a special interest in treating women's health and injury recovery.