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How Your Tongue Can Reveal Your Health


Your tongue’s appearance can reveal a lot about your body’s health condition. Different areas of your tongue represent the health of different organs in your body. When looking at the tongue, acupuncturists look at the shape, size, colour, moisture, coating and movement to see what is going on inside your body. Tongue diagnosis is used in combination with a variety of other diagnostic methods, such as pulse diagnosis, to get a better understanding of a person’s health.

Jonathan, who runs Edinburgh Natural Health Centre, said: “Just by looking at someone’s tongue, you can’t tell everything about their health, but the tongue diagnosis will often tell you a lot. Tongue diagnosis is only one part of the method we use for diagnosing illness and health.

“Sometimes the tongue can be amazingly accurate. Ninety per cent of the time it’s really useful, 10 per cent of the time it’s confusing and you have to ask more questions.”

“You can sometimes tell an amazing amount about somebody.

“You are using the information that is there.” A good or healthy tongue has a pleasant colour – not too dark or pale or bright red – and a natural, thin, white coating on the surface. It should not have too many lines, and no central line, and when you stick it out, it should not quiver. On the underside of the tongue, the two veins on either side should not be too swollen or dark.

A bad or unhealthy tongue can be swollen, bitten with visible teeth marks, has an uneven texture and indented sides. It also quivers when stuck out. If it has a thick, gooey residue, this suggests problems with digestion or constipation, and if it is dry, the fluids in your body are not doing what they should.

If it is purple, this could suggest a circulatory problem, whereas a red tip means you are not getting enough sleep.

Once all diagnostic methods are carried out and the results collated, only then will an acupuncturist begin to treat the patient. The treatment, which is tailored to suit the needs of each patient, usually involves inserting fine needles into specific points on the body to stimulate energy channels.

Acupuncture can be used to treat most diseases and conditions from respiratory problems to neurological and musculoskeletal disorders through to gynecological issues and mental conditions

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