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The Energetics of Spring

Start the season with a successful and safe detox by paying special attention to the liver and gallbladder.

| Spring 2020

Photo by Getty Images/portishead1

Spring is the season of bursting forth in Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM); the energetic movement is literally up and out. Based on millennia of nature observations, TCM principles explain the flow of movement in the body in poetic terms of nature. Each season has a different set of internal organs associated with the energy of that season, as well as an element that best describes the qi, or energy, of the season. In spring, the wood element expresses the upward and outward movements of spring, and the liver and gallbladder are the internal organs that most reflect that movement.

The most important role the liver and gallbladder play in the body is detoxification. These organs — the liver in particular — help clear the body of toxins. By clearing toxins, the liver provides the body with higher-quality blood that can more easily circulate. It also helps the body digest fats by releasing bile, which helps clear fat from the digestive system and absorbs it into the bloodstream. This bile is stored in the nearby gallbladder. Additionally, the liver provides a backup energy reserve for the body in the form of glycogen, which is the stored form of glucose. In a nutshell, the liver is busy with three functions: detox, breakdown, and backup.

In order to do these jobs well, the liver itself needs to be clean and clear. When the liver isn’t functioning efficiently, the body will signal that it needs a little extra attention.

On the Lookout

Photo by Getty Images/g-stockstudio

Common signs that the liver needs detox support include: 

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