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 Qigong and Taiji: The Lymph 

The presence of CSF in the lymphatic system and the presence of neurotransmitter receptors on immune cells(53) suggestes a powerful association between neurotransmitters and immune function in the reticuloendothelial system. While the effect of Qi Gong and Yoga/Pranayama on this mechanism is not clearly defined, it is likely that it occurs through lymph propulsion as has been discussed. Research to quantify and delineate this aspect of the lymph system and explore the action of lymph and CSF as a transport system for specific neurochemicals is clearly a priority.

5. Nutritive (trophic) Function
The importance of a broad availability of nutritional factors to the tissues is fully accepted. However, the role of the lymphatic system in this activity was barely understood before 1972.(41) The original findings of Assellius in dogs revealed the route of absorbtion of nutrients from the small intestine via the lacteals.(40) The effect of the breath apparatus through the action of the diaphragm, during deep inspiration, on the cysterna chyli and the small intestine may enhance the rate or effectiveness of nutrient absorbtion. This may be an especially important mechanism in the absorption of nutritional factors and the delivery of the pharmacologic potential of herbal formulas that are commonly used in both the Chinese and Indian traditional medical systems.

In addition, free extracellular proteins participate in lymph fluid and as plasma protiens in the blood. They carry constituent amino acids that may be utilized by the tissues. These may become conjugated protiens which carry essential minerals, fats, carbohydrtates and enzymes to their respective destinies.(41) The clarification and understanding of the trophic function of the lymph suggests a simple but profound effect of the enhanced lymph volume and flow rate activated by Qigong and Yoga/Pranayama.

©1996 Roger Jahnke, O.M.D.

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 About The Author
Roger Jahnke OMDRoger Jahnke has been in the health field since 1967 beginning with body therapies, herbal medicine, Tai Chi, Yoga and meditation. He turned his attention seriously to Oriental medicine in 1972 with study at the North......more
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