Eight Principle Theory:

The 8 Principle theory is especially useful in Herbal medicine.

A Yin disorder is typically more internal, deficient, and cold.
A Yang disorder is typically more external, excessive, and hot.
Of course this is theory, and the possibility of mixed presentations in a clinical setting is not rare.
It is the goal of the TCM practitioner to identify the underlying pattern.


According to Yin-Yang principles and correspondences.
Location of a disorder, the direction from which it emanated or to which it is evolving.
Chronic, insidious in development, possible gastrointestinal symptoms, prompted by internal stressors. Acute, aversion to cold, wind, heat, possible fever, prompted by external conditions and a lowered resistance.
Quality of force at a specific time and place.
Insufficiency of energy, blood or fluids, functional hypoactivity, pale complexion, weakness, shallow breathing, pain relieved by pressure. Accumulation of energy (stagnant energy), blood, fluids (cysts/tumors), functional hyperactivity, loud and forceful behavior, heavy, rapid breathing, pain worse with pressure.
Quality of an imbalance
Slow pulse, slow lethargic activity, aversion to cold, pain eased by heat, white tongue coating, introverted. Rapid pulse, rapid, agitated activity, aversion to heat, thirst, desire for cool climate & drinks, red tongue, extroverted.


Calvin Dale Smith, BA, MSc, R-TCMP, R-Ac
Registered Traditional Chinese Medical Practitioner
Riverside Acupuncture and Wellness Centre
2211 Riverside Dr., Suite 106
Ottawa, ON K1H 7X5