Understanding Mahonia Mountain Bitters & its Action on Liver Qi
If you are like many Americans who struggle with acid reflux, heartburn, indigestion, and skin problems like acne, rosacea & psoriasis.
Qi (pronounced chee) is a term used often in Traditional Chinese Medicine. It represents an energetic component of an organ, body, or aspect of nature. Qi is the vital life force that flows through your body.
Energy is representative of a non physical, measurable essence of these sorts of bodies. When energy is stagnant, or over productive, it can cause problems and dis-ease.
Think of a river with lots of rocks and twists and turns as it comes down a mountain. When the energy of that river is turbulent, there is more excitement, rapids and overflow. If the river goes stagnant, it is not providing the forest, plants, animals and fungi with the energy they need to survive. Either imbalance of too much energy or too little causes problems for the body of the forest.
When the mountain river is flowing free & easy, there is balance in the habitat it creates. Qi is your internal river of divine energy.
Talking specifically of the liver’s qi, in TCM (chinese medicine), when you are holding too much energy, or having turbulence concentrated in your liver, an angry type of heat begins to overflow into the body.
This creates an imbalance of internal fire, and leads to heartburn, acid reflux, bloating and indigestion, and loose bowel movements. It can also result in things like acne, rosacea and other skin problems like eczema and psoriasis. In creating these symptoms, the body is attempting to relieve the heat trapped in the liver.
When the vital life force of the liver is thrown off with too much heat, the result is inflammation and an overly acidic digestive system, lymphatic drainage issues and skin eruptions.
With foods not being broken down efficiently through an overload of acidic substances, the stomach holds onto the food which leads to putrefaction of food in your stomach.
This food rotting in your stomach is what causes the feeling of acid reflux, heartburn, and the acidic feeling in the back of your throat. When you have this happening, not only is your esophagus in long term risk of cancers and other degenerative dis-eases, but your body is not able to assimilate proper nutrients to thrive & function.
The solution is perfectly simple, where there are acute conditions of heartburn and acid reflux, enter, Oregon Grape Root, Leaf & Berry.
Oregon Grape, which is the main ingredient in our Mahonia Mountain Bitters, is known as an alterative, this means it strengthens the capacity of the liver, therefore, cleansing the blood more deeply and bringing a cooling qi to the entire digestive system. This liver tonic herb is highly renowned in Western Herbalism for cooling liver qi and helping with digestion.
This brings balance back to the liver, resulting in food being broken down properly to be assimilated by the small intestines.
With a cooling effect of the liver, fats & proteins are able to be fully broken down in the stomach, this results in putrification of foods is no longer an issue.
Now that you understand liver qi and how it can show up in imbalance states, you will be able to address it perfectly with the help of digestive bitters. Taking digestive bitters regularly for a matter of months, you will find a renewed sense of vitality in your digestive system. Heartburn and acid reflux will cease to plague your life as your food is being broken down correctly.
Taking digestive bitters is simple. 1-2 mls (milliliters- which are measured on my droppers!) before meals, or when experiencing cravings. What I like to see, after the digestive system is fully grounded & balanced, is my clients working with digestive bitters only for cravings of trigger foods, or after an indulgent meal. Once we achieve balance, there is no need to be dependent on the bitters.
The Herb Shop is officially stocked with Mahonia Mountain Bitters for the 2022 Season. Go grab your bottle to get your heartburn under control.