By Monique G. Bain, MAC, LAC, Acupuncture Physician
In Chinese Medicine, we look at patients much like we look to nature in order to diagnose and find the body’s imbalances. According to Chinese philosophers, anything in the world can be broken down into 5 types of energy, The Five Elements: Wood, Fire, Earth, Metal, and Water.
All of us have a little bit of each element within us, however, we all have a dominant Element and this is said to be their causative factor. The causative factor is the element that is the foundation of the imbalances that a person might be experiencing.
As our days become brighter and warmer, nature is leaving winter and moves toward Spring, the season of new growth. Spring is the season of the Wood Element, known as the rebirth. The Wood Element is associated with the liver and gallbladder. The liver is the organ responsible for planning and gives us the vision for our future. The gallbladder is the organ that gives us the ability to make decisions wisely. When liver and gallbladder are not in balance, we lack vision and plan; we have difficulties making decisions and have no direction, causing the person to feel frustrated. In the physical body, the wood element governs the inner legs, groin, diaphragm, tendons, ligaments, sinews, connective tissues, nervous system and more. Imbalances with the wood Element might manifest in the body as acne, fatigue, painful and irregular periods, allergies, pain on the right side of the body, trembling, spasms, seizures, being accident prone and more.
On the Emotional side, Wood dominant people love action, challenges, and obstacles. They possess a very strong driving force of hope and action. Wood’s emotions are associated with being angry, aggressive, irritable, frustrated, impatient, impulsive and rigid. When wood is out of balance, they might display tendencies of addiction, rage, violence, depression, apathy and inability to plan. However, when wood is in harmony, those people are extremely independent, kind, forgiving, patient, thoughtful and achievers.
Wood people need physical activity and it is very important for them to be active daily. Green is their color, and ideally, they are in bed by 11 pm since liver and gallbladder regenerate from 11 pm to 3 am.
Suggestions for the spring season:
• Begin your day early with a walk.
• It’s the season for new beginnings and reinvention ( at home, work and yourself). So, begin new things!!!
• Nourishing green foods: broccoli, cabbage, celery, asparagus, artichoke, lettuce, leeks
• Roots that detoxify your liver: garlic, onion, radish, sweet potato, carrots, beets
• Health grains for wood: quinoa, brown rice, millet, and buckwheat.
It’s important to note that both excess or deficiency in the Wood Element may cause symptoms both emotionally or physically. If you connect with the Element of Wood, you can use food, herbs, exercise, lifestyle changes, Acupuncture and Chinese medicine to find your balance.
For more info about Five Element Wellness Center, call 954-657-8342,