“WEI QI”, strengthening our immunity
"Traditional Chinese Medicine has played a very important role against COVID in Wuhan”
Wang De Feng, a former WHO collaborator who opened her TCM academy in Toulouse, enlightens us on traditional complementary alternatives to Western medicine.
LHCH: How about addressing the urgent issue of COVID so that you can showcase the full benefits of TCM?
Wang De Feng: There are 5 disciplines in all. Regarding the urgency of strengthening our immune defenses against this virus, I will talk about pharmacopoeia, dietetics and Qigong, a little less about acupuncture and manual therapeutic manipulations (Tui Na). The philosophy is that of Wei Qi: “to maintain the energy” ( inside our belly)
LHCH: Thanks. First in China, did TCM help people in Wuhan?
Wang De Feng: Yes. As a reminder, on February 6, the Chinese government and the national high academic authorities of TCM formalized a specific treatment of COVID-19. According to publications, a cure rate of 90% has been achieved in tens of thousands of patients treated. 10 days later, these medications were used in all Chinese hospitals. Experiments and reflections continued as knowledge progressed on COVID-19 and the pathogenesis of SARS-CoV-2. Specific treatments have diversified, now offering a range of treatments adapted to each situation.
LHCH: Concretely, what was given as treatment?
Wang De Feng: Decoctions: preparations of 5 to 15 Asian plants in precise doses that are allowed to boil in water for 2 minutes. These preparations obviously varied depending on the patient’s condition based on a differential diagnosis. The ingredients consist of 90% plants and 10% related to animal substances. But for years, the Chinese government has restricted the exploitation of certain rare species, out of respect for animal life. Chinese medicine can treat 90% of current illnesses with plants.
LHCH: Videos from TIK TOK showed people doing physical exercises during the very severe lockdown in Wuhan.
Wang De Feng: You had to heal your body and soul. Don’t get depressed…. Qi Gong is also beneficial for prevention and support in the face of COVID, especially since it can be practiced alone at home in order to regulate the flow of energy yourself. Of course in a group in a park, it’s wonderful too; whether in China or Europe. In 5 elements Qi Gong, we work the organs in relation to these 5 elements and following animal attitudes and movements. There is also dynamic or static Qi Gong, etc …
“Rebalancing the internal energies of the liver and spleen to stabilize the immune system”
LHCH: Finally, confined or not, we must take care of our diet.
Wang De Feng: Yes TCM includes diet. For example, the “Yaoshan” approach allows you to mix pharmacopoeia plants with Chinese food. Heal yourself by eating! Even in some Chinese restaurants, YaoShan is practiced. There are recipes that can lower body temperature during a heat wave or again, increase the resistance of the immune system.
LHCH: A Belgian doctor whom LHCH had interviewed only spoke of “supportive” treatments in TCM?
Wang De Feng: It’s not my experience. In Toulouse, the 4th largest city in France, the less hit, I was contacted by patients with fevers and severe symptoms; the attending physicians did not dare stop by them and no room in the Hospital! Following our advice, they took decoctions from the Chinese pharmacopoeia at a distance and recovered.
LHCH: Did these sick people easily find the ingredients for these decoctions?
Wang De Feng: Yes, there are laboratories in Strasbourg and Paris that can prepare these treatments.
LHCH: Apparently there is political resistance in Europe against TCM …
Wang De Feng: Yes, but it is enough to overcome the resistance of certain European countries and to see in WHO how TCM has created a certain interest in WHO. China has sent well-received treatments to Africa, for example.
LHCH: Where does this reluctance come from? Apart from the financial interests of BIG PHARMA…
Wang De Feng: Initially Chinese medicine and Western medicine were based on totally different thoughts. TCM is holistic: the body is seen in its unity, in its essential links between the organs, from the inside and the outside, up and down… Western medicine is analytical. It divides the body, almost dissects it. Each organ is analyzed in its own identity and in its tiny parts: cells, tissues, atoms, etc.
The future is certainly in a cooperation, a cross between these two medicines. And reluctance or not, this is above all an urgent public health issue! Europe must look to China.
LHCH: Doesn’t Chinese medicine, in a natural and non-chemical way, already have solutions for common illnesses in Europe linked to lack of sport or stress, depression?
Wang De Feng: Yes and I’m obviously thinking of the many depressions linked to COVID and the economic crisis. We never recommend anti-depressants. Once again, Qigong allows you to relax the mind, accept complex situations, avoid too much pressure from the environment. Many joint diseases are also linked to stress. The DAO YIN allows you to work on the flexibility of the joints, the circulation of the IQ, the meridians,
LHCH: We have seen pharmacopoeia, Qigong and dietetics, there is also …
Wang de Feng: Then comes acupuncture using different methods such as needles or moxibustion. They cover care for 50% of pathologies. Finally, manual therapies such as Tui Na gentle energy massages for disease prevention and body maintenance. And the more vigorous manipulations for the direct treatment of certain ailments such as osteopathy in Europe.
LHCH: What can we learn at your academy?
Wang de Feng: This is a space for future practitioners where, instead of specializing in such or such training, they can access all of the 5 knowledge of TCM as presented here.
LHCH: Training accessible to all?
Wang de Feng: Yes, especially if you already understand the holistic philosophy of TCM. Conventional physicians who supplement their knowledge sometimes have more difficulties. Of course, for everyone, memorizing the 200 ingredients of the pharmacopoeia, the Chinese names of the points and meridians of the body, etc., requires a little perseverance!