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Stomach QI...Food stagnation...Spleen.. Deficiencies?


Greetings TCM fans,

I’m hoping to crowd-source your wisdom to find a solution!! I’ve been facing ‘digestive issues’ for the past 6 years and cannot figure out what’s wrong :confused:

Here are the more prevalent symptoms:

  • abdominal distension
  • no appetite
  • gas /bloating after eating
  • food stagnation?/very slow digestion
  • constipation
  • tinnitus (Sudden onset & chronic) but particularly loud after stressful moments
  • tense jaw/always chewing my lips
  • cold hands/feet
  • palpations (1-2x/week)
  • pale tongue/teeth marks/white fur more towards the back of tongue
  • always sleeping on my side and slightly curled up (rarely on my back)

Can anyone tell me what is wrong with me? Is it possible for a TCM practitioner to diagnose my symptoms and recommend herbal combinations ? (No TCM practitioners nearby)

Thank you all in advance :smile:

Looking forward to your comments/recommendations!!


I would hope that others with more experience that I have will chime in but: It seems like most of your symptoms can be explained as “Spleen qi deficiency” and dampness in the middle jiao.

Re: constipation: How often do you have bowel movements? What is the quality of the stool (formed, soft, hard, dry, sticky, etc?) Difficult to pass? A feeling of relief afterwards, Or worn out afterwards?

Also, what is your diet like? In a general sense, CM would recommend incorporating mostly cooked foods that are easy to digest for your condition What is your level of activity? Do you have a lot of desk/computer work? Stress? (A couple of your symptoms make me think of the Liver and stress, but it doesn’t seem to be the primary pattern based on what you’ve written).

A formula that comes to mind based on the info you’ve provided is: xiang sha liu jun zi wan. However, I’m not entirely sure that would treat the constipation. Hoping to hear others’ input as well.


So in these 6 years, what have you done that has helped (if anything)? Dietary change that has been helpful, or at least things you know make yourself worse. Do you have an exercise program of any kind? Have you ever had acupuncture, energy healing, etc.? If so, what kind of response? Have you had any good months or good weeks throughout this 6 years, or is there completely constant problems? What was your diet the last 3 days?



In response to the questions posed by allanburns:
bowel movements: 4-6 times a week (not daily); its usually easy to pass and ‘fluffy’ when I take turmeric and drink lots of water; w/o the turmeric I pass fewer/smaller/harder movements; feeling afterwards is ‘incomplete’- as if there’s more that could have been expelled.

diet; varies from healthy to carnivorous!! I’m not trying to eat meat only once a day or even every other day; I led a rather sedentary life and recently got a 9-6 but its behind a desk and almost worse than previous lifestyle.

In response to Chad_Dupuis:
I’ve taken turmeric to help keep the movements consistent and the bloating to a minimum;
magnolia bark has also helped keep the bowel movements regular and the abdominal distension/food stagnation to a minimum; I actually feel like my stomach is emptying out normally when I incorporate the magnolia bark.

what im trying to avoid is a lifetime usage of herbs to keep me normal;

so far im taking a combo of:
magnolia bark

once in while I feel like im pushing out too much (borderline hemorrhoidal feeling) when taking all 3 so I lay off or rotate … when I don’t take any of them- all the previously mentioned symptoms return (with a vengeance)


Its pretty difficult to make an accurate diagnosis online but I’d agree spleen qi deficiency seems likely. Here’s a few tips that might help. Eat slower, chew thoroughly. Do not drink cold water with meals and ideally only a few sips of liquid with food to help wash it down. Wait 20-30 mins after eating to drink more. Avoid raw foods, eat mostly cooked veggies, minimal fruit (apples are the exception). Don’t mix lots of protein with carbs, i.e. no steak and potato. Avoid dairy, and avoid or at least minimize consumption of artificial and/or processed foods. Get some exercise, even light walking can make a positive difference. Good luck!


Just so that I am clear, I meant all of my questions literally? So specifically with regards to: " What was your diet the last 3 days?" - I would like to know exactly everything you consumed the last three days. People often think they are doing everything they can to help themselves and many times (most?) - at least some of what they are doing is a bad choice for them. Very direct answers to my other questions would be helpful as well if you’d like some help.


Hi Chad (and everyone else),

I’ve recently begun every morning w/ hot lemon water followed by a banana & coffee, lunches with salads and fiber filled cookies n tea, dinners usually meats n veggies or veggies and rice/noodles…

Ive noticed that starches cause afternoon sleepiness (bad idea at work) and breads lead to bloating… But good news!! Today i met with a Chinese doctor and after his evaluation- he has confirmed spleen deficiency, slow digestion, heartbeat and circulation… Not necessarily constipation but due to the slow overall movement it affects the bowels as well…i cant upload a picture of all that he’s prescribed but have s good feeling about his diagnosis.
Thank you all for your suggestions as i will include them in my new regime.

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