Qigong and the Immune System

by Norah McIntire, L.Ac.

Register for the upcoming Introduction to Qigong class! Register here

One benefit that is traditionally associated with a qigong practice is improved immunity and resistance to pathogens. According to the model of Chinese medicine, qigong stimulates pathways, energy centers, and acupuncture points that provide greater overall vitality of the body. Certain practices are also tailored specifically to stimulate areas associated with the body’s defenses.

However, the real goal is not just a stronger immune system, but a balanced immune system. The immune system can overreact, as in the case of autoimmune disease (rheumatoid arthritis, inflammatory bowel disease, asthma, etc.) or allergies. One of the dangers of COVID-19, for instance, is an overreaction of the immune system, called a cytokine storm, that ultimately damages the tissues and structures of the body in the effort to fight an invader.

The ultimate goal, then, is an immune system that is regulated and behaves appropriately when encountering stressors.

Here is one Western study that suggests there was evidence that qigong does in fact help regulate and balance the immune system, including the body’s inflammatory response.

One way this happens is by balancing the nervous system and decreasing the stress response. Qigong can be a very easy and enjoyable way to relax and nourish the body according to both Eastern tradition and Western science.

If you want to take advantage of the health-boosting benefits of qigong, I am teaching a four-week class for beginners that starts August 24. Please join us!

Register here. For more information about the class, go here.