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Temple Blog Bigu 辟谷 Physiological & metabolic changes

Weight change during bigu 辟谷

During fasting, the blood pressure of hypertensive patients will drop significantly, while some patients with hypotension will increase their blood pressure. Still, their vision, hearing and touch will become sharper, memory and association will also be enhanced, and the number of white blood cells will increase within the first week of fasting. Fasting can improve the body’s immunity.

In the early stage of Bigu 辟谷, the mouth of some Bigu 辟谷 people is bitter and astringent, the tongue coating becomes white and thick, the body has a peculiar smell, the stool is loose, some are dark green or even smelly, and some have pus and blood or rotten flesh. Yellow urine and dull complexion are all signs of clearing and expelling toxins. After the toxins are cleared, they will soon return to normal.

From the first day to the fifth day of Bigu 辟谷, the weight loss is the most obvious, with an average weight loss of 1 to 2 kilograms a day, and from the fifth day onwards, the weight loss is 0.5 to 1 kilogram per day. Sometimes there are exceptions, depending on each person’s physical factors and constitution. 

changes in physiological functions

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Within three or five days of entering Bigu 辟谷, a considerable number of students experienced a process of unsuitability. During this period, one sometimes feels weak, weak legs, dizziness and discomfort, or even a lack of Qi. These are normal reactions. As long as the mind is firm and calm, and the practice of auxiliary exercises is strengthened, all kinds of discomfort will disappear. With the extension of Bigu 辟谷 time, after the adaptation period, the body will be light and healthy, full of energy, and the body and mind will have an indescribable sense of comfort and pleasure.

During the Bigu 辟谷 period, there is a reaction of Qi Chong lesions. If there are various reactions at the lesion site, sometimes it is even more evident and uncomfortable. The original disease has healed parts. Sometimes there are different reactions. The phenomenon of Qi Chong lesions is obvious, and some are not obvious. When there is an impact lesion, don’t be afraid, the condition will be further improved or cured after the impact. At the same time, it is necessary to observe and react to the situation in time to deal with it.

Exercises during bigu 辟谷

The importance of pharyngeal fluid

Ancient practitioners emphasised and paid attention to the importance of saliva in cultivation. They call saliva “Jinjin Yuye” and regard it as a treasure for practice. During the period of Bigu 辟谷, because the food source is cut off, the energy source of the human body is supplemented by the decomposition, combustion and release of energy stored in the body. The human body depends on establishing a new energy communication channel with nature and the universe. Therefore, convincing (eating Qi) and pharyngeal fluid at this time is critical.

Looking at the cultivation methods of Bigu 辟谷 in various dynasties, it is all about convincing Qi and the pharynx. Therefore, there is often a saying that “when you are hungry, you eat air, and when you are thirsty, you drink Huachi pulp.”

Bigu 辟谷 Physiological & metabolic changes

The method of pharyngeal fluid

During the long-term cultivation practice, the ancients have summarised and accumulated many methods and experiences, which can be used for reference and learning by most modern practitioners. The essentials of pharyngeal fluid are that pharyngeal fluid should not be gushed in large mouths but should be divided into several small mouths and swallowed continuously. The pharyngeal fluid method can also be combined with percussion teeth for a better effect.

To increase the saliva in the mouth, one can practice two exercises.

Exercise 1

Stir the sea and pharynx, also known as “red dragon stirs the sea”. The red dragon is the tongue. The method uses the tongue to stir the mouth and teeth and the left and right cheeks, waiting for the body fluid to be swallowed. 

Specific operation: stir the mouth with the tongue gently nine times on the outer upper, outer lower, inner upper and inner lower in turn of the teeth (or rotate clockwise and counterclockwise 18 times on the outside of the teeth), a total of 36 times. When the body fluid in the mouth gradually increases, gargle 24 mouthfuls, and then swallow slowly in three mouthfuls. “Sit with your eyes and heart closed, and hold the ghosts and spirits firmly. Fill your mouth with water evenly. Divide into three swallows in one mouthful, the dragon runs, and the tiger runs on its own. After the water goes against the water, rinse and swallow again. After the three repetitions are completed, the Shenshui will be swallowed nine times. Swallowing tears, the pulses are mixed thoroughly.”

Another method is holding a date seed in the mouth without spitting to help produce saliva. Then drink and swallow. It works very well. (There are two valuable inscriptions on the bronze mirror of “Immortals drink Yuquan” unearthed in Hunan, one of which is “thirsty times (drink) Yuquan ridicule (hungry) eat dates”. Use Yuquan to quench thirst when fasting. The meaning of using red dates to satisfy one’s hunger. According to the “Records of Jin Miao Lu of Immortals on Eating Qi”, it is recorded: “If you have nine jujubes, you should eat one when you eat them. Those who don’t want to eat in the middle do not need to eat. It is good to have the jujube core to receive Qi and body fluid in the mouth.” It also emphasised the important role of taking jujube in producing saliva.

During the period of Bigu 辟谷, the pharynx and convincing had the same significance. We can strengthen the effect of Bigu 辟谷 by stirring the sea, gargling, and swallowing. Of course, due to the particularity of the Bigu 辟谷 method, after the average person enters the Bigu 辟谷 state, the internal organs and tissues in the body enter a new functional state, which can be automatically adjusted according to the health of the body. 

Often swallowing saliva is quite beneficial to the regulation of the internal organs of the body, as well as the regulation of nerves and body fluids. 

Exercise 2: Knocking the teeth

In the past, there were different opinions on health preservation. Teeth knocking is a standard method of dental health care. Modern medicine believes this can increase the self-cleaning effect of teeth, exert the stimulation formed by chewing motion, and enhance the teeth’ resistance. Knock your teeth once a day in the morning and evening. The number of percussion teeth is not limited and can vary from person to person. The force of knocking the teeth is not uniform, and it can be done according to the health of the teeth. But it must be persevering and uninterrupted to see results.

Modern medicine believes that knocking the teeth can promote the blood circulation of the tissues around the teeth and the pulp cavity, increase the nutritional supply of the teeth, and strengthen the teeth, thereby reducing the occurrence of dental diseases such as dental caries. It also has a mild stimulating effect on the brain when knocking teeth and has a particular impact on improving hearing and preventing tinnitus. If you insist on the frequent knocking of the teeth, the cheeks are not easy to collapse, the chewing force is strong, and the teeth are not easy to loosen and fall off.

Knock-tooth-swallowing method:

“Although many people wash their faces clean, they look like they are covered with a layer of dust from a distance.” It is what Chinese medicine calls a dull complexion. The reason is that the vitality and kidney essence is not sufficient. Therefore, beauty is not a superficial effort. Only when the internal organs are in harmony, the Qi and blood are balanced, the meridians are unobstructed, and the vitality and kidneys are abundant can the complexion be moist and translucent from the inside out. The skin will naturally become delicate and smooth.

After waking up in the morning:

  • Don’t speak first.
  • Keep your mind calm.
  • Get rid of distracting thoughts.
  • Relax your whole body.
  • Slightly close your lips.
  • Unite your mind.
  • Close your eyes.
  • Make your upper, and lower teeth tap each other rhythmically, with a sonorous sound, and the number of times is unlimited.

At the beginning of the exercise, you can tap about 20 times. With the continuous progress of the practice, you can gradually increase the number and intensity of the taps, generally 36 times. The strength can be adjusted according to the health of the teeth. 

From the perspective of traditional Chinese medicine health preservation, the end of percussion should be supplemented by “red dragon stirring the Tianchi”, that is, after percussion, use the tongue to stir against the upper and lower gums and the surface of the teeth in the cavity, and the force should be gentle and natural. Next, the inside and outside, stirring 36 times, can massage the gums, improve local blood circulation, and accelerate the nutrient blood supply to the gums. When you feel the production of body fluid (saliva), do not swallow it and continue stirring. After the saliva gradually increases, place your tongue against the upper palate to gather the saliva, swish your cheeks and gargle with saliva (drum gargle) several times, and finally swallow slowly three times. 


Time for practice

The complete “Knock Teeth Swallowing Jin Method” occurs in the morning, noon and night each day. More is better. Among them, knocking the teeth in the morning is the most important because the teeth will be a little loose after a night of rest. At this time, knocking the teeth will consolidate the gums and periodontal tissues and stimulate the dental nerves, blood vessels and pulp cells, which is good for the health of the teeth.

Friendly reminder

Bigu 辟谷 is not simply fasting or starvation. Ordinary people do not know the method, and it is easy to hurt the stomach, liver, gallbladder and kidney. Remember not to practice on your own.

who is not suitable for bigu 辟谷

1. People with mental illness and those with a history of mental illness;

2. Those who have been operated on for less than a month, those who are extremely weak, those who are seriously ill and unable to take care of themselves;

3. Severe heart disease and stenosis, particularly severe myocardial infarction, visceral haemorrhage or hematemesis;

4. Patients with perforation of ulcer disease, patients with particularly severe renal disease, patients with advanced cancer, patients with stage 2-3 pulmonary tuberculosis;

5. Long-term use of insulin, epinephrine, or human organ transplants such as liver and kidney;

6. Adults are too thin, less than 40 kg;

7. People with hyperthyroidism and hypoglycemia;

8. Pregnant women and breastfeeding women;

9. Skeptical people do not learn with humility, do not listen to the teacher’s words, and are eager for success.

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