Today we will discuss the liver function from a Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) perspective. First of all, the liver houses the Ethereal Soul or “Hun” which is very similar to a western concept of the soul. It gives the body both life and purpose.
From an eastern perspective, the liver is related to the storing of blood and the smooth flow of Qi. What exactly does this mean? The liver ensures blood is sent to the muscles during physical activity, and has a significant impact on menstruation in women. Whether your menses are light or heavy, you experience clotting, mid-cycle spotting or severely painful periods and PMS, your liver is a large part of regulating your cycle. Also, the smooth flow of Qi (energy) in the body can manifest emotionally or physically. If you have a balanced emotional life, Qi is flowing normally and freely. When you experience frustration, depression, anger and irritability, Qi is obstructed and affecting your day-to-day life. Physical symptoms associated with obstructed Qi include abdominal distension, a lump in the throat and oppression of the chest. Also, the liver will manifest in your nails and opens into the eyes for proper vision.
Lastly, every organ is associated with a specific time in the day. Do you ever wake up in the middle of the night or maybe experience insomnia between 1:00-3:00am? That is the peak time for liver activity, and it might be trying to tell you something!