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Low in Qi? Enhance Your Life Force and Fight Fatigue in 5 Steps

Published | 4 min read

A Qi (life force) Deficiency is linked to fatigue and other symptoms. Several treatment options can help regulate it and provide relief.

Woman asleep on a red sofa with her blazer and handbag on her lap and mobile phone in her right hand.

The human body produces qi, a life force that helps maintain a balance between yin and yang. A person is healthy when yin and yang (passive and active energy) are in harmony. 

However, a decrease in the production or disruption to the flow of qi can cause illnesses. These conditions stem from body constitution imbalances – Blood, Qi, and Yin and Yang Deficiencies as well as Qi Stagnation and Blood Stasis.

Read on to learn more about qi-related disorders and the steps you can take to maintain good health. 

Imbalances That Can Be Detrimental to a Person’s Life Force

Woman staring into space as she sits at a wooden table while supporting her chin with her right hand and holding a piece of bread in her left
A loss of appetite is also associated with Qi Deficiency.

In Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), the Spleen is the production site for vital substances such as qi, blood and fluids. 

If the functions of the organ system are impaired, Qi Deficiency can occur. It’ll deprive the different organs of nourishment and suppress their functional abilities. Consequently, a person may find themselves prone to sluggishness and fatigue.

In addition, they can develop symptoms like: 

  • Breathlessness 
  • Fullness or bloating 
  • Nausea 
  • Spontaneous sweating 
  • Brain fog throughout the day 
  • Loose stools 
  • Loss of appetite 
  • A pale-yellow complexion 
  • A weak pulse 
  • A swollen tongue with teeth marks on the sides 

Stress can affect the Liver, inhibiting the movement of qi throughout the body. Over time, the Liver system may affect the Spleen system, resulting in Qi Deficiency. 

When diagnosing fatigue, a licensed TCM practitioner will observe your behaviour and analyse your medical history. The colour and shape of the tongue, as well as tongue movement, can also show signs of a body constitution imbalance.

Sometimes, the practitioner may take your pulse and temperature and press gently on the skin to identify pain, tenderness, or lumps.  

5 Easy Steps to Overcoming Qi Deficiency-Related Fatigue 

Practise healthy habits

A person with Qi Deficiency can achieve balance by sleeping at 11pm and it’s recommended that you get seven to eight hours of sleep. It’s also advisable to keep warm at all times and avoid windy areas after a strenuous workout.

The Chinese also believe that mealtimes are important and should not involve other activities. Performing another activity while eating may affect proper digestion. 

Eating in moderation and at regular times is important to keep your digestive system healthy. Consuming food in moderation and chewing properly lessens the burden on the digestive system and encourages nutrient absorption. It can also prevent bloating or fatigue symptoms.

Chewing food lessens the burden on the digestive system and encourages nutrient absorption. Refrain from cold or chilled beverages and oily food to avoid Spleen damage.

Eat a therapeutic diet 

To fix a Qi Deficiency, a person can consume foods that tonify qi and invigorate the Spleen. Examples of these are chicken and soybeans.

On the contrary, they should avoid foods that consume qi, including garlic, coriander, and raw radish.

Engage in regular physical activity

Four women practising qigong together outdoors.
Qigong has been found to improve symptoms of chronic fatigue.

Qigong can be a complementary therapy for people with chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS). A 2012 study found that Qigong improved CFS symptoms and mental functioning in people aged 18 and 55. 

A traditional form of exercise, qigong combines focused movement, poses, breathing exercises, and meditation. 

Use herbal remedies 

Cordyceps (dong cong xia cao, 冬虫夏) is a prized mushroom that naturally enhances stamina and endurance. It has proven successful in addressing the symptoms of CFS. 

Chinese yam (shan yao, 山药) and American ginseng (xi yang shen, 西洋参) can aid digestion and alleviate fatigue, respectively. The essence of chicken tonic may also be consumed to achieve the latter effect.

Physically stimulate points on the body 

Acupuncture treatment uses fine needles to manipulate energy flow. Hence, it can relieve exhaustion by correcting imbalances and producing a calming effect on the body.

A person can also activate specific points on the body 20 to 30 times daily. The acupressure points that can be worked on are zu san li (ST36, 足三里) and bai hui (GV20, 百会). He gu can improve qi flow and strengthen immunity, while bai hui can calm the nerves and elevate qi

Tuina – a traditional massage technique – and cupping therapy may also be considered alternative physical therapies for relaxation.

A healthy lifestyle and alternative remedies can balance a person’s life force. However, it’s best to consult a TCM practitioner on the suitability of herbal ingredients and traditional physical therapies for your unique body constitution.


  1. Eu Yan Sang. DEALING WITH CHRONIC FATIGUE SYNDROME. [online] [Accessed 4 September 2022] 
  2. Eu Yan Sang. TCM: Understanding The Role Of The Spleen. [online] [Accessed 4 September 2022] 
  3. Eu Yan Sang. TCM: GETTING BACK INTO BALANCE. [online] [Accessed 4 September 2022] 
  4. All Things Health. 2022. Tired All the Time? Here’s How You Can Boost Energy Without Caffeine. [online] [Accessed 4 September 2022] 

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