Why You Need To Help Your Liver In The Spring – From A Shiatsu Theory Perspective

Written By Mihael Mamychshvili, RST

Spring is coming; the flowers are blooming, the sun is shining and the temperature is slowly (too slowly for my liking) climbing up. People around this time start planning to get in shape. Loosing that extra weight can be the most daunting challenge. At times, it seems like no matter how hard we attack the gym that winter weight doesn’t want to come off.

Many people don’t realize their Liver is the culprit!

The liver is the largest internal organ in the human body (3 lb. for an average adult), located on the right side behind the ribcage. Besides secreting bile, a dark liquid which is needed for absorption of fat, it also performs many other important functions:

  • Carbohydrate Metabolism – maintains balanced sugar levels
  • Fat Metabolism – breaks down fat to generate energy and help     synthesize cholesterol and use it to create bile salts.
  • Protein Metabolism – protein is made in the liver.
  • Processes and Detoxifies – toxins, drugs, and hormones.
  • Storage – stores glycogen, vitamins A, B12, D, E, K and minerals.

The Shiatsu Therapy Theory Perspective

In Shiatsu Theory whis has basis in Chinese medicine there are 5 elements: Wood, Fire, Earth, Water and Metal. The gallbladder and liver fall under the Wood element where the season is spring. Spring is a time to rejuvenate and cleanse your body after its winter sleep.

The liver is the most congested of all organs in the modern person. Too much fat, chemicals, intoxicants, and processed foods all disrupt the hundreds of intricate biochemical processes of the liver. Traditional Chinese medicine believes that the condition of a person’s liver directly reflects the energetic state of the person. When the liver is in harmony, there is never tension or stress. When there is congestion, obstruction, or overheated energy emotional and physical symptoms occur.

Symptoms Of Liver Imbalance

Emotional Symptoms:

Anger is the major emotion associated with liver. Impatience, frustration, resentment, violence, belligerence, rudeness, edginess, arrogance, stubbornness, aggression, mood swings, and impulsive or explosive personality.

*When many of these emotions are repressed for a long period of time, depression can set in.

Physical Symptoms:

  1. Swelling of the body

When too much food is eaten – especially rich greasy food – the liver becomes swollen and sluggish. Energy or Qi becomes stagnated and not properly distributed. The result is a swelling in certain areas in the body, the chest, abdominals, thyroid, throat, legs, breasts and groin.

Ligaments & Tendons

2.When energy and fluid flow are deficient, tendons & Ligaments are not moistened and can easily tear, become inflamed and achy. That in turn affected the connected muscles, which make the body unusually rigid and inflexible.


The same is true for the eyes which become inflamed and lose their ability to focus. Conditions such as glaucoma, cataracts, inflamed or dry eyes, night blindness and other visual abnormalities relate to liver imbalance.

3.  Lack Of Blood Purification

The liver stores and purifies the blood, so inadequate functioning can cause toxins to flow into the blood stream affecting the skin. Impure blood causes acne, eczema, boils, acidosis and allergies. In addition, toxic blood feeds all degenerative conditions, including cancer and arthritis.

*Women can be particularly affected by heavy, irregular, or missed menstrual cycles.

 Other signs of liver blood deficiency are:

·         Anaemia

·         Body dryness

·         Tendons/ligaments/muscle spasms or numbness

·         Pale face

·         Spots in the visual field.

4.       Excessive liver heat

Traditional Chinese medicine states that this condition is caused by an excessive diet in meats, eggs, intoxicants, cheese and fats. The body has hard time cooling itself and symptoms like:

  • aversion to heat
  • craving cooling fluids
  • red tongue with yellow coating
  • redness in the upper body
  • inflamed eyes
  • headaches and migraines
  • dizziness and high blood pressure

When symptoms become chronic, depression, nervousness, frequent thirst, hot palms and soles and insomnia show up.



One has to be mindful of diet, proper rest, exercise and ways to de-stress the mind and body. When there is a liver disharmony in the body avoid excess eating specifically heavy fatty foods and intoxicants.

Drink Teas and fresh juices: Chamomile, mint, fennel, green juices, and bitter herbs

Liver Tonic at our clinic.

Eat mostly pungent and mostly raw fruits and vegetables.

Shiatsu Therapy: Stimulating the liver channels can affect the organ physiologically, energetically and psychologically.

Book Your Shiatsu Therapy Session 604.558.1926604.558.1926 or book online on our website.

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