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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


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 off­color, 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.

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