They say the eyes are the windows to the soul. Did you know that the face can be the window to your health?
According to Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), your face’s appearance can offer valuable information about issues that could be affecting your overall health. The shape of your face, the color of your complexion, and marks such as lines or lesions can all help us determine a diagnosis and treatment plan.
To get an idea of what we sometimes look for, take a look at yourself in a mirror under natural light. There are five colors that appear in the face: red, black, yellow, green, and white.
Everyone’s skin tone is different, and usually one color is dominant, though several other colors can be visible. What colors do you see? Do you have visible veins, and if so, what color and where are they? Is your skin moist or dry?
A healthy, lustrous complexion and normal color indicate a good balance and flow of Qi (“life energy”) within your body. If the complexion is off-color, looks lifeless or “withered,” or is too moist or too dry, it may indicate an imbalance of Qi.
Each color is associated with specific conditions, syndromes, and organ and meridian networks. White, for example, is associated with the Lungs, so a pale appearance could indicate a Lung Qi deficiency and breathing problems.
Another important factor in facial diagnosis is that different regions of the face, such as the nose, the eyebrows, and the mouth, correspond with specific organ and meridian networks. For example, the nose correlates with the Spleen, the brows with the Liver, and the lower lip to the Large Intestine.
Since the face and your overall health are so closely related, you may discover positive changes in your complexion as your body regains balance and harmony through acupuncture and TCM.
Rebecca M H Kitzerow is a Licensed Acupuncturist practicing in La Center, Washington. With over a decade of experience she has won 10 Nattie consumer choice awards from Natural Awakenings Magazine since 2014.