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Finger nails

There is so much to tell about a person simply by looking at their hands. Not just their gestures or wrist wear, but the health of their skin and more importantly the state of their fingernails. The shape, structure, colour, markings etc can tell if the person has Heart issues, Liver problems and so on.

Ladies, shiny manicure sure is nice, but your nails can actually tell you a lot about your health too. If you have thought of them primarily as canvases for the display of interesting colors of nail varnish, the following may surprise you and perhaps lead you to keep them unpainted from time to time, so you can read them for clues. From a TICM perspective, ladies having fake nails done or polishing it, you have no idea the damage you are causing to your health but that is a story for another post. 

In the West, there is a general acknowledgment that the appearance of one’s nails can reflect the state of one’s health, but in many Eastern medical traditions the nails are used quite directly in the diagnosis.

Colour: TICM takes into account the colour of the nails since the health of the blood that circulates in the nail bed is thought to be reflected in the nails’ colour. A healthy nail colour is pinkish red. Nails that are purple are thought to indicate a state of general weakness and low resistance, while nails of dark red may accompany a diet high in fats and cholesterols, and a stagnant vital energy circulation. White nails may suggest poor circulation and anaemia.

Spots/texture: other conditions that a TICM doctor might take into account include the presence of white spots in the nails, hangnails or split nails, horizontal indentations in the nails, vertical ridges, and hard, thick, malformed or discoloured nails.

Beyond just the outward appearance, each finger and fingernail is associated with particular internal organs and meridians. If certain internal organs are imbalanced, they will affect the health of certain nails.

Nails of thumb: Lung channels and organs.

Nails of index finger: Large Intestine channel and organ.

Nails of middle finger: Pericardium channel.

Nails of ring finger: Sanjiao channel, trunk area which is associated with metabolism, digestion and circulation.

Nails of little finger: Heart and Small Intestine channel and organ.

Looking at the mails, a TICM doctor should be able to tell where in your life you need to make adjustments, dietary changes etc.

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