Vitamins and Constitutions

March, 1995     

Light and Salt

Dr. Dowon Kuon

When vitamins, which are the organic substances of life, were first introduced, people believed that they could take vitamins as much as possible and that there were no side effects from taking them. But after a while they found out that there were diseases caused by vitamin overdose. Then people began to realize that even with effective vitamins, taking them could have different results: if too much is taken, there could be unfavorable effects; if an adequate amount is taken, health is improved; and if too little is taken, there would be a deficiency.
 
For the same type of vitamin, some individuals only benefit from it regardless of the amount they ingest, whereas others easily contract diseases from even a small amount of vitamin overdose. Whether a certain kind of vitamin is beneficial or harmful depends on the person who takes it.     
 
Vitamins are not produced by biosynthesis in the body but must be ingested through food to help the organs function properly. However, depending on his constitution, an individual has some naturally weak organs that require certain vitamins for strengthening; he also has naturally strong organs that do not require any vitamins. The eight body constitutions are the eight different arrays of the internal organs according to their strength and weakness. The weak organs of each constitution need certain vitamins to maximize their functioning potential. Therefore, even if an individual takes “too much” of a certain vitamin, he will not suffer negative effects, as long as the vitamin taken is needed to support the functions of the weaker organs. This means that whether a certain kind of vitamin is beneficial or harmful depends on an individual’s constitution.
 
Vitamin A mostly comes from cod liver oil and is not found in vegetables. Some people with vitamin A deficiency might have poor night vision, bone development disorders, dry eyes, respiratory mucous membrane disorder, a reproductive organ disorder, etc.
 
Vitamin D is an antirachitic nutrition that is found in liver oil, shellfish, fish, egg yolk, and butter, and is related to the parathyroid glands.
 
Deficiency in vitamins A and D can limit the function of the lungs, thereby resulting in disorders such as bone development disorder, respiratory mucous membrane disorder, rachitis, and thyroid-related diseases. Such deficiency also causes the liver (the antagonist of the lungs) to function excessively, resulting in effects such as poor night vision and dry eyes. Individuals who suffer from these symptoms benefit from vitamins A and D. These vitamins are also necessary for hepatonia and cholecystonia individuals, who naturally have weak lungs and a strong liver. Individuals with either of these two constitutions may take as much of vitamins A and D as they like without ever contracting a disorder from “overdosing.” But if individuals with the pulmotonia and colonotonia constitutions—characterized by strong lungs, a strong colon, a weak liver, and a weak gallbladder—take vitamins A and D, their lungs and their colon become stronger in their function, and at the same time, their liver and gallbladder, which are the antagonists of the lungs and colon, become weaker. This can cause negative side effects, which are symptoms of hypervitaminosis. For individuals who have these two constitutions, even a small amount of vitamins A and D can become poisonous.
 
The first symptom of a vitamin B1 deficiency is a decrease in one’s appetite, and then other symptoms such as fatigue, anxiety, and beriberi subsequently develop. These symptoms are found in renotonia individuals, who have a weak pancreas. Renotonia and vesicotonia individuals, when they lack vitamin B1, easily contract digestion-related troubles, such as angular stomatitis, glossitis, conjunctivitis, watery eyes, and visual defects.
 
While it is always beneficial for renotonia and vesicotonia individuals to take vitamins B1 and B2, pancreotonia and gastrotonia individuals, who have naturally strong stomaches and pancreas, may suffer from negative symptoms when they overdose on these vitamins. Vitamins B1 and B2 are also harmful for pulmotonia individuals.
 
Long ago, a man called me and said that his elderly mother was at the hospital suffering from a numb arm. Since I was aware that she was an individual with the pancreotonia constitution, I told him to make sure that she did not get thiamine injections. The next morning, he asked me to come over, and by the time I got there, she had already lost consciousness and her abdomen had become swollen like that of a pregnant woman. I found out that she had received thiamine injections throughout the previous night and that she was receiving injections even at that time.
 
I returned from there thinking that the reason for her quick decline must have been her reaction to vitamin B. I found out that the medical staff opened her abdomen to find out why her abdomen was swollen; they realized that all her abdominal organs were bleeding. This was due not to anyone’s fault but rather to ignorance regarding how poisonous vitamin B could be to pancreotonia individuals.
 
Reactions to vitamin C aren’t completely confirmed. However, we do know that sailors in Jang-do are susceptible to scurvy and that bottle-fed babies are susceptible to Möller Barlow’s disease. Both are a result of a lack of vegetable intake. Because of this, we believe that vitamin C is a nutrient that helps the liver and gallbladder. This means that it is beneficial for pulmotonia and colonotonia constitutions, which are characterized by a weak liver and a weak gallbladder.
 
Vitamin E is typically used for curing sterility. Most of the people who are healthy but sterile are pancreotonia individuals (this does not mean that all pancreotonia individuals are sterile but that we do not usually find sterile people among any other constitution). Since pancreotonia individuals naturally have weak kidneys, they easily suffer from sterility. Vitamin E supports the kidneys and can be effective for curing sterility. It is also beneficial for individuals with the gastrotonia, pulmotonia and cholecystonia constitutions, even though they are not usually sterile. However, the rest of the constitutions do not need vitamin E. Even if they are sterile, vitamin E is not able to cure them.
 
Whether certain vitamins are essential to an individual depends on his constitution. This principle should also be applied to a person’s receiving of all other nutrients.  The nutrients contained in vitamins, if taken properly, are for the prevention and curing of diseases.
 
An American doctor had the following on the back of his business card: “The doctor of the future will give no medicine, but will interest his patients in the human frame, diet, and in the cause and prevention of disease.” Thomas Edison, a genius and an inventor, spoke this one hundred years ago. The American doctor wanted to be such a “doctor of the future.” 
 
American people are more interested in food and nutrition than they used to be. But without knowing their constitution, their mere interest is futile. Foods that are good for one person are not good for all people, and that which is harmful for one person could be beneficial for another. Nutrients help organs to function properly. There are eight different arrangements of the internal organs according their strength and weakness based on the theory of eight constitutions. Nutrients that strengthen the weak organs should be taken, whereas the nutrients that strengthen the strong organs should be avoided.

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