Kidney Yang deficiency has a lack of dynamic warming vitality in a body system that’s core for fertility and which dominates the strength in the lower abdomen, including the reproductive organs. Kidney Yang deficiency sometimes comes from childhood, or it can develop from lifestyle choices or life events that deplete Qi and Yang. These are lifestyle choices that challenge the warmth of the kidneys such as repeated exposure to the cold, too much sex, chronic illnesses, diets that increase the chill the body, and just getting older.
There are some hormonal imbalances such as PCOS and hypothyroidism that directly weaken and drain Kidney Yang and early stage endometriosis (which is considered a Yin Excess condition) often comes from a relative lack of Kidney Yang. A number of chronic conditions that have retention of Dampness (often from Spleen Yang deficiency) can also obstruct, weaken and chill Kidney Yang and hyperinsulinemia, diabetes and metabolic syndrome are examples. Going back to the Classics and their statementsi helps to explain Kidney Yang’s relationship with fertility:
“The Kidneys govern reproduction”
The Kidneys are the most important organ ‘system’ in Chinese medicine for fertility and any weakness in them reduces the likelihood of conceiving
“The Kidneys store Jing”
Jing is the most important substance in fertility and it determines sexual development and egg and sperm production. There are two types of Jing; the Jing we inherit from our parents (pre-natal), and the (post-natal) Jing that we create from our diet and lifestyle
“The Kidneys are the root of Yuan Qi”
Yuan Qi is a dynamic and rarefied form of Jing and that’s the foundation of all Yin and Yang energies in the body, as well as being the basis for Kidney Qi.
“Without Yang, Yin cannot transform; without Yin, Yang cannot engender”
Yin and Yang are like the fuel and flame in a fire; Yang transforms Yin, and this encourages more Yang activity in the same way that a strong fire encourages more
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i From “Statements of Fact in Traditional Chinese Medicine” by Bob Flaws. ISBN 0-936185-52-X