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What Your Tongue Says About Your Health

Beauty&HEALTH What Your Tongue Says About Your Health

Story & Photo Contributed by Dr. Brandy Valentine/ Lotus Acupuncture and Chinese Medicine

Your tongue is a window to your health. Think about it - your tongue is the only muscle in your body you can actually see, and therefore it gives you an idea of the state of your internal environment.

The tongue is an invaluable diagnostic tool in Chinese Medicine, but anyone can use it to evaluate and improve his/her health. The first step is to get a visual baseline of your particular tongue geography by looking at it in the mirror at the same time every day in a well-lit area with a white background.

Pay close attention to the tongue coat, tongue body, and anything else such as teeth marks, spots or cracks.

Your tongue coating should be thin and slightly white. A thick tongue coat generally means digestive upset of some kind, which is usually worsened with cold, raw, spicy and greasy foods or drinks. Iced tea and water with ice can be hidden culprits. Soups and stews with wellcooked protein and vegetables, are basic recommended remedies. Another easy fix is to make sure you chew your food until it is juice before swallowing.

A dry or cracked tongue could mean you are dehydrated or that you are not getting good nourishment from your food. How do you fix that? Drink more water and eat more apples, pears and vegetables. Drinking enough water is so simple, yet most of us stay chronically dehydrated. My maximum guidelines for water consumption in a healthy person are about half of your body weight in ounces of water per day (200 pounds = 100 ounces).

Your tongue should be slightly red or pink. If it is purple, then you have what is called stagnation. That stagnation can be caused from pain, stress or feeling stuck in your relationship, job or life in general. Movement is the answer. Start by taking short walks or stretching for 15 minutes daily, get out of that job or do something new in life that excites you.

Do you see teeth marks on the sides of your tongue? If so, you are probably a worrier, running thoughts through your mind constantly and overthinking everything. The easy fix here is journaling. We run thoughts through our minds, because the information is important. As soon as that information is written down, our minds can rest assured that the important information is stored and no longer needs remembered.

In conclusion, your tongue is a window to your health that can be seen by the naked, untrained eye. You will quickly notice that your tongue changes when the way you feel changes. Making small adjustments to your diet or lifestyle directly influence its geography.

This tongue has teeth marks (overthinking), a thin white coating (mild dairy sensitivity or missing gall bladder), red tip (insomnia or anxiety) and is slightly pale (anemia or fatigue — does more for others than herself).