Sticky stools according to Chinese Medicine

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Sticky stools can be the consequence of several so-called “patterns of disharmony” in Chinese Medicine.

Chinese Medicine sees the body as a system, not a sum of isolated parts. A "pattern" is when the system's harmony is disrupted, leading to symptoms or signs that something is wrong (like sticky stools here). It is similar to the concept of disease in Western Medicine but not quite: a Western disease can often be explained by several Chinese patterns and vice-versa.

A pattern often manifests itself in a combination of symptoms that, at first glance, do not seem necessarily related to each others. For instance here sticky stools is often associated with lassitude, shortness of breath and loose stools in the pattern “Summer Heat with Dampness”.

Once identified, patterns are treated using medicinal herbs, acupuncture, and other therapies. In the case of sticky stools we’ve identified that a herbal formula called Huo Xiang Zheng Qi San can help treat the patterns behind the symptom.

Summer Heat with Dampness, a "pattern of disharmony" that can cause sticky stools

In Chinese Medicine sticky stools is a symptom for the pattern "Summer Heat with Dampness". Below is a small explanation for it with links for more details.

Korean Mint (Huo Xiang) is the king ingredient for Huo Xiang Zheng Qi San, a formula used for Summer Heat with Dampness

Summer Heat with Dampness

Pulse type(s): Rapid (Shu), Soggy (Ru)

In addition to sticky stools, other symptoms associated with Summer Heat with Dampness include lassitude, shortness of breath and loose stools.

Summer Heat with Dampness is often treated with Huo Xiang Zheng Qi San, a herbal formula made of 11 herbs (including Korean Mint - Huo Xiang - as a key herb). Huo Xiang Zheng Qi San belongs to the category of "formulas that transform dampness and harmonize stomach", which might be why it is often recommended for this pattern. Its main action as a formula is: "Releases the Exterior".

Read more about Summer Heat with Dampness here

A herbal formula that might help with sticky stools

Huo Xiang Zheng Qi San

Source date: 1107 AD

Number of ingredients: 11 herbs

Key actions: Releases the Exterior. Transforms Dampness. Regulates Qi. Harmonizes the Middle Burner.

Why might Huo Xiang Zheng Qi San help with sticky stools?

Because it is a formula often recommended to treat the pattern 'Summer Heat with Dampness' of which sticky stools is a symptom.

Other symptoms characteristic of Summer Heat With Dampness include lassitude, shortness of breath and loose stools.

Read more about Huo Xiang Zheng Qi San here

Korean mint might help with sticky stools

Why might Korean Mint (Huo Xiang) help with sticky stools?

Because it is a key herb in Huo Xiang Zheng Qi San, a herbal formula indicated to treat the pattern 'Summer Heat with Dampness' (a pattern with sticky stools as a symptom)

Korean Mint is a Warm herb that tastes Pungent. It targets the Spleen, the Stomach and the Lung.

Its main actions are: Transforms Dampness that is obstructing the Stomach and Spleen. Harmonizes the Middle Warmer, for nausea and vomiting. Relieves the Exterior from invasion of Cold and Damp.

Read more about Korean Mint here