Key Insight

emotional stress, no rest

Physical connection
Physical Symptom
Psych (excess)
Psych (deficient)
Related Principle
More specific principle
Look for

Mouth ulcers, Thirst, Thick, dry, dark-yellow, tongue coating, Epigastric pain

Questions to ask
Pulse position

Stomach-Qi stagnation may give rise to Blood stasis in the Stomach if the condition persists for a long time.

Stomach-Qi stagnation may also generate Heat and lead to Stomach-Fire or Stomach-Heat. In long- standing conditions, the Qi stagnation may also contribute to the formation of Phlegm and lead to Phlegm-Fire in the Stomach

Heart-Fire may affect the Spleen and lead to Spleen- Heat. It may also affect the Stomach and lead to Stomach-Fire.

Symptoms of Stomach Fire

Stomach Fire’s symptoms cannot be ignored! (By the way, you don’t need all of them to qualify!)

  • Burning pain in your stomach area, high in your epigastrium
  • Thirst: strong, for cold drinks, preferably iced
  • Stools: dry, sometimes hard to pass, even causing bleeding
  • Breath: bad breath, some burping and eructations which taste sour or acidic: you use breath fresheners
  • Very hungry: often need to eat, partly to prevent burning pain
  • Nausea: particularly after eating the wrong kinds of food
  • Vomiting sometimes after the wrong kinds of food
  • Mouth: toothache and swollen or bleeding gums; you may chew gum so as to avoid smiling and to hide the smell of your breath. You like mint flavours.
  • Mouth ulcers
  • Hot – not just in your stomach area, but a general feeling of heat. You wear less than most people, even on very cold days. You may be the one wearing just a T-shirt during snow!
  • Mentally you find it hard to concentrate or settle. You switch between TV channels, seldom finding programmes you like
  • Pulse: Fire makes it fast or rapid. On the right wrist in what is called the middle position – where the Stomach pulse is felt – it feels big (the technical term is ‘over-flowing‘)
  • Tongue: with the thirst and heat is a redness in the centre of your tongue. Over the surface is a dry coating: its colour is either yellow, dark-yellow or even black in places.

Emotions that cause Stomach Fire

Although a small number of people get cold when angry or frustrated, usually strong emotions are heating:

  • anger
  • anxiety that makes you nervous and restless
  • frustration
  • jealousy
  • target chasing under time pressure
  • resentment
  • stress
  • worry


Mouth ulcers Thirst Thick, dry, dark-yellow tongue coating Epigastric pain

Full-versus Empty-Fire


Red face and eyes, a pronounced feeling of heat, a dry mouth, a bitter taste, constipation, scanty dark urine, thirst, mental agitation, dark purple spots under the skin (macules), blood in cough, vomit, urine, stools, epistaxis, Red tongue with dry yellow coating, Full-Rapid pulse


Night sweating, a feeling of heat in the chest, palms and soles, red cheekbones, a dry mouth, afternoon feeling of heat, a Red tongue without coating and a Floating-Empty and Rapid pulse

Mouth ulcers Thirst Thick, dry, dark-yellow tongue coating Epigastric pain