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Spring Time in Chinese Medicine

‘Spring has sprung !’ is usually announced around April, but this year Spring has been reluctant to spring. After a very long winter we are all desperate for warm sunshine, green grass and colourful blooms to raise our spirits, clear our minds and physically become more active.

In 5 Element Acupuncture great emphasis is placed on the seasons and their connection to our health. Spring is related to the flow of Qi (energy) through the Organs & channels of the Liver and Gallbladder. This is referred to as The Wood Element.

The Wood Element pertains to the colour green, has the power of birth, and its time is the Spring. When we look at this season with budding new shoots on the trees and flowers and how nature bursts forth and begins to grow furiously after the dormant winter, we can see the qualities of Wood in action. In ourselves we might feel as if we want to stretch out physically & mentally like the branches of the tree. Emotionally the Wood Element is about assertiveness, creativity, expansion, planning & decision making.

When we look at the role of the Liver in Chinese Medicine we find it has many functions from the physical, emotional, mental and spiritual aspects of our make up. The Liver is the planner, responsible for the storage of Blood in order to allow rest, activity and menstruation in women. It ensures the smooth flow of Qi for balanced emotions, smooth digestion and the secretion of Bile. It nourishes the tendons, manifests in the nails, opens into the eyes and houses our Ethereal Soul known as The Hun. The Hun Spirit is responsible for our aims in life and the ability and creativity to fulfil them, the ability to move forward, create and achieve.

Its partner Organ The Gallbladder is the decision maker, responsible for the secretion and storage of bile, it is involved with rules & decision making and it activates the tendons.

In our overly busy lives our Liver & Gall Bladder are often overworked leading to an imbalance of emotions, lack of clarity in planning and decision making and can result in aimlessness, lethargy, anger & frustration. Luckily getting out into nature and observing the greenery, smelling fresh flowers, grass & trees can soothe our Liver & Gall Bladder bringing calm, tranquility and the restoration of our sense of purpose.

Five Element Acupuncture aims to balance our energies in line with nature and is used to balance our constitution. Combined with Tradition Chinese Medicine it can treat most chronic ailments. Those ailments connected to The Liver and Gallbladder are menstrual disorders, menopausal symptoms (menopause in Chinese Medicine is known as second Spring !) digestive disorders, allergies, hayfever, eye problems, emotional imbalances, muscular problems, depression, lack of courage, aimlessness, anger and frustration.

With gentle manipulation of the Liver and Gallbladder channels and points these organs can be brought back into balance allowing all the Five Elements of Fire, Earth, Metal, Water and Wood to harmonise and create optimum health.


College of Integrated Chinese Medicine, Reading (2012)

A. Hicks, J. Hicks, P. Mole. Five Element Constitutional Acupuncture, Churchill Livingston Elsevier. (2011)


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