The seven emotions impair the Zang-Fu mainly by disrupting Qi activities. Qi carried Blood will go astray. Further, prolonged emotional distress may transform into Fire — “Fire transformed by five emotions.” This Fire impairs Yin, and disrupts Yin–Yang coordination.
|(1)||Excessive Joy slows Defensive Qi, causes the Heart-spirit to be restless, and results in loss of concentration, and mania. In the usual situations, Joy relaxes Qi, Blood, Nutrient Qi, and Defensive Qi, achieving serenity in the mind.|
|(2)||Excessive Anger rouses Qi by driving Liver-Qi and Blood up to the head. The symptoms are dizziness, headache, red complexion, eye redness, hematemesis, or even sudden syncope.|
|•||When disorderly Liver-Qi flow interferes with the Spleen and Stomach, it also results in loss of appetite, belching, diarrhea, and chest oppression.|
|(3)||Excessive Worry depresses especially the Lung-Qi and the Liver-Qi.|
|•||When Lung-Qi is depressed, the symptoms are chest oppression and difficult breathing.|
|•||When Liver-Qi is depressed, the symptoms are hypochondriac fullness/pain, gloominess, and poor appetite.|
|(4)||Excessive Anxiety stagnates Qi, especially Spleen-Qi, impairing the Spleen’s transforming activities with symptoms such as gastric/abdominal fullness, loose stools, and poor appetite.|
|•||Prolonged Anxiety largely consumes Yin Blood, starves the Heart-spirit, and causes Heart palpitations, amnesia, insomnia, and dream-disturbed sleep.|
|(5)||Excessive Grief exhausts Lung-Qi, by largely withholding insufficiently dispersing Qi. Nutrient and Defensive Qi are not distributed appropriately. The symptoms are dizziness, fatigue, and lack of energy.|
|(6)||Excessive Fear drops Qi, and:|
|•||Promotes urine and stool incontinence.|
|•||Causes bone atrophy and seminal emission, because the lower Kidney cannot store essence.|
|•||Lessens Zang-Fu function and body immunity.|
|•||Gives rise to diseases in the presence of external pathogens.|
|(7)||Excessive Fright disturbs Qi. Fear and Fright are similar responses, but differ in their effect on Qi activities in the Zang-Fu. Fright, related to the lower Kidney, causes Qi to sink. Fear, related to the Heart, causes mental derangement, indecision, and bewilderment. Disturbance of Qi activities adversely affects Qi, Blood, and body immunity, and increases disease susceptibility in the presence of external pathogens.
The seven emotions cause and aggravate diseases. Emotional factors cause diseases; for example, heightened Liver Yang, complicated by Anger, rises abruptly and causes dizziness, fainting, speech incapacity, paralysis, and distorted eyes and face. Emotional factors can aggravate diseases; for example, a Heart disease patient, when terrified, can have a new episode or worsen the present state.