During difficult times such as now, It is important to take time for self care and reflection. Traditional Chinese Medicine offers a whole-body approach to health and wellness. In TCM, our physical health and our emotional health are interwoven. We often see a correlation between how a person is feeling emotionally and how they are feeling physically. When we work with our patients, we work with to find balance with both our physical health and our emotional health.
In Traditional Chinese Medicine, every main organ has an emotion that is associated with it. Each organ’s emotion often correlates with the physical symptoms of that organ.
LUNG: Grief and sadness is associated with the Lung. Deep sadness and grief can harm the function of the Lung. When the Lungs are weak it is important to take care of ourselves. When we are experiencing grief and sadness, it is also important to care for our lungs. Covering up, wearing clothing to protect us from getting sick, eating comforting foods that nourish our body, breathwork and deep breathing all help to protect our Lung energy. It is also important to feel and express grief as a way of healing and keeping our lungs in good health!
HEART: Happiness and Love are often associated with the Heart. On the other end, stress or one’s inability to express oneself can directly impact the function of the Heart as well. When we are lacking joy we can feel emotionally stuck, have difficulty sleeping and be subject to a variety of health issues. In addition – too much happiness and joy can be overstimulating and cause anxiety, palpitations and insomnia.
STOMACH/SPLEEN: Worry and overthinking are often associated with the Stomach and its paired organ, the Spleen. It is not uncommon for patients who worry a lot to have digestive distress and symptoms. Many people who have IBS symptoms (gas, bloating, urgency) have exacerbated symptoms when they are under more stress
KIDNEY: The emotion associated with the Kidney is fear. The Kidneys are deeply rooted in our body. Oftentimes, fear is the same way. We may not be aware that we are in fear until it has been with us a long time. Longstanding fear can weaken the kidneys. Since the Kidney’s oversee our water metabolism and control the bladder, we oftentimes will see urinary issues, lowered sexual drive and water metabolism issues with longstanding fear
LIVER: The emotion associated with the Liver is Anger. When our Liver is backed up and congested, we will notice feelings of stagnation in our body. We may feel it emotionally (Anger, irritability, short fused) or physically (sluggish, PMS, headaches, Digestive issues). Too many toxins, fats, processed foods, alcohol (or a combination) can cause our Liver energy to get stuck.
In our practice, it is very common for our patients to experience patterns – of physical symptoms and emotions – that are undeniably tied together. When we take care of one – the other often improves as well!