7월 06, 2010
Four Constitutional Medicine 2
Q: Four-Constitution Medicine has explanations of the food that benefits each types of constitution. How can this constitutional food be used in everyday life?
Professor : In several books on Oriental Medicine, some phrases mention that grain, vegetables, alcoholic drink which many people eat commonly can be used for treatment. In Four-Constitution Medicine, there are also some explanations about the ingredient of the constitutional food. However, I think the view that equates food with medicine is wrong.
In Four-Constitution Medicine, the nature of the constitutional food is the individual character of the materials of food itself, not the character of cooked dish. We should notice that it is not desirable to insist on the constitutional food material because this can cause an unbalance of nutrients. In addition, the attempt to eat only the constitutional food rashly can cause diseases. In general situations, eating only the constitutional food that benefit one's type of constitution can possibly result in some problems such as stress-related illnesses.
Therefore, we should eat food made out of various ingredients when we are in good health. In bad health conditions, however, the constitutional food can be used for advice to plan a meal focused on selecting the food and avoiding the ingredients that can be harmful to health.
Q: In Western Medicine, patient-specific medicine wins a great deal of popularity. Patient-specific medicine refers to a medical method that prescribes medicine and administer the correct dose based oneach patient's difference. Then what is the difference between patient-specific medicine and the constitutional method in Four-Constitution Medicine? And how much of a contribution has the development of Four-Constitution Medicine made towards medical and scientific fields?
Professor : The Western Medicine has gradually changed from the medicine that perceives the body locally and anatomically to the medicine that observes the body as a whole. For example, a recent research on blood pressure is based on the perception that considers several factors such as heart, blood vessel, autonomic nerve, hormone as one mechanism. In addition, there have been some attempts to observe the human body by studying genes, which is based on a perspective that innate factors related to the potential occurrence of diseases exist in genes. But I think it is going to take long time for these attempts to bring successful results.
Four-Constitution Medicine categorizes the special characteristics of people into four constitutions. It doesnot classify people individually based on the difference in genes as opposed to Western Medicine. In other words, Four-Constitution Medicine does not consider the 6 billion people as 6 billion individuals. On the contrary, It analyzes people in various ways such as physiological way, clinical way, appearance, and character. Based on the analyzation, it classifies individuals into the four constitutions based on the characteristics in common.
Recently, mutual exchanges between Western Medicine and Four-Constitution Medicine have largely progressed, and these exchanges trigger the clinical proof of a considerable contents in Four-Constitution Medicine. For example, Four-Constitution Medicine suggests that obesity is mostly common among greater yang person. Actually, a large number of greater yang people suffer from this disease according to the clinical research.
In accordance with these research outcomes, gradually larger number of Western medical researchers offer to co-research with TKM researchers on Four-Constitution Medicine. Nevertheless, I believe that the researchers in Four-Constitution Medicine should make a new therapy and verify the constitution by finding systematic indicators classifying the constitution objectively. When the researchers find out the indicators that can classify person regardless of gender, age and any other factors and massive research data can support these indicators, Four-Constitution Medicine can exercise enormous effects on the development in Medicine and Science.
Q : How come we should study Four Constitutional Medicine(FCM)?
Professor : First of all, it is highly important that students are willing to study Four Constitutional Medicine. Recently, some students are hostile to FCM, arguing that it is not included in Traditional Korean Medicine(TKM). However, It clearly is a part of TKM(Please refer to the interview part Ⅰ. Blind exclusivism impedes the development of TKM itself, just like some exclusive religions do. All the people studying TKM should study the basic of FCM, at least.
Second, FCM distinguishes TKM from Traditional Chinese Medicine(TCM). While TCM only demonstrates symptom and treat without putting stresses on the patients' situation(which is, it only cares about the symptoms of patients) just as Western Medicine does, TKM observes patients first and consequently takes care of his/her symptoms, since it is a kind of Form Medicine(形象醫學) that figures out pathological evidences from one's appearance. FCM is one of the best ways to learn about people(patients),I think.
Third, it is exciting to study FCM. There are two parts of FCM, one is philosophy, and the other is methodology. Both are fun, though hard to learn. Students will get their eyes open by studying FCM theory. Speaking figuratively, it is much pleasurable and easy to calculate the area of circle with Integral Calculate than merely with elemental mathematical knowledge(cut circle into thinnest pieces which is triangles and sum up the area of the triangles).