The 5 Elements

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The 5 Elements

An incredibly complicated, yet simple formula for understanding the human body, by yours truly, TCM. We will explore the 5 elements in depth. Know that each element is associated with different organ networks, colours, emotions, taste and sensory organs. Not only does this provide a concise overview of your body, it also helps TCM practitioners to diagnose, understand and treat imbalances. 

*Image from Thompson TCM

Let's delve deeper into each element - you may find that you associate entirely with one element, or more than one element.

The Wood Element

If you are a “Wood Personality,” you may be someone who is athletic, energetic, and adventurous. The body type of a wood personality is generally well-muscled. Wood personalities tend to be anxious and angry. Wood personalities may suffer from orthopedic issues, TMJ, migraines, or ADD.

  • Organs: Liver & Gallbladder
  • Season: Spring
  • Weather: Wind
  • Direction: East
  • Emotion: Anger
  • Color: Blue/Green
  • Taste: Sour
  • Sound: Shouting
  • Sense Organ: Eye
  • Sensation: Vision
  • Body Tissue: tendons, sinews

The Fire Element

A “fire personality” consists of someone who is passionate, creative, and authoritative. Their body structure may be round in the middle with a pointy top. Fire personalities tend to be impulsive and irritable. Fire personalities may suffer from insomnia, high blood pressure, chest pains, or headaches.

  • Organs: Heart, Small Intestine
  • Season: Summer
  • Weather: Heat
  • Direction: South
  • Emotion: Joy
  • Color: Red
  • Taste: Bitter, Burned
  • Sound: Laughing
  • Sense Organ: Tongue
  • Sensation: Taste
  • Body Tissue: Vessels

The Earth Element

An “earth personality” is someone who is nurturing, generous, and care giving. Their body structure may be round and fleshy. Earth personalities tend to be worrisome and pensive. Earth personalities may suffer from abdominal issues or hormonal problems.

  • Organ: Spleen, Stomach
  • Season: Late Summer/Harvest
  • Weather: Damp
  • Direction: Center
  • Emotion: Worry
  • Color: Yellow
  • Taste: Sweet
  • Sound: Singing
  • Sense Organ: Mouth, Lips
  • Sensation: Touch
  • Body Tissue: Muscles, Flesh

The Metal Element

A “metal personality” is someone who is meticulous, honest, and responsible. Their body structure may be somewhat angular and tall. Metal personalities tend to be melancholy. Metal personalities may suffer from constipation, lung & skin issues, or allergies.

  • Organ: Lung, Large Intestine
  • Season: Autumn
  • Weather: Dry
  • Direction: West
  • Emotion: Grief
  • Color: White
  • Taste: Spicy
  • Sound: Weeping
  • Sense Organ: Nose
  • Sensation: Smell
  • Body Tissue: Skin

The Water Element

Water personalities are old souls. They are wise, reflective, and private. Their body structure may be puffy and round. Water personalities tend to be indecisive, fearful, and paranoid. Water personalities may suffer from back pain, knee pain, and kidney & bladder infections.

  • Organ: Kidney, Bladder
  • Season: Winter
  • Weather: Cold
  • Direction: North
  • Emotion: Fear
  • Color: Black, Dark Blue
  • Taste: Salty
  • Sound: Groaning
  • Sense Organ: Ear
  • Sensation: Hearing, Balance
  • Body Tissue: Bone, marrow 

Yours in TCM,

By 36.