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Skin Care and Traditional Chinese Medicine

by Heather Schuerlein, L.Ac, Dipl.OM

Healthy Skin, Inside and Out

Acupuncture – and Eastern dietary therapy – is all about beauty from the inside out. We are finding more and more ties between what we eat and the health of our skin. From supporting nourished, beautiful, glowing skin to healing skin disorders like psoriasis, hives, and eczema, diet plays a major part in keeping our biggest organ nourished and healthy.

What you put on your skin and in your stomach is worth exploring. Let’s take a deeper look at how our diet affects our skin and overall health.


Skin Health in Chinese Medicine

When considering skin health and dermatology, we look mostly at the Lung and Large Intestine systems. In Chinese medicine, the Lung system pertains to both the organ of the lung, as well as the skin. Imbalance in the Lung system can cause issues and irritation with the skin and vice versa.

The Large Intestine, which is paired with the Lung system, rules the body’s elimination and some detoxification processes. Imbalances in the Large Intestine system cause a build up of waste and toxins in the body which later themselves as impurities and irritation in the skin.

In addition to these two important systems, Chinese medicine also makes use of face reading. Each area of the face pertains to a different organ system. We can diagnose imbalances by considering where on the face any blemishes, dryness, oiliness, redness, or other issues present themselves.

Overall, when considering dermatology, Chinese medicine aims to clear toxins, cool excess heat and irritation, nourish yin, and smooth the flow of blood. These aims pave the way for health skin, inside and out.

The Role of Diet In Chinese Medicine

Chinese medicine has its very own style of nutrition: Eastern dietary therapy. Within the framework of Eastern dietary therapy, each person’s individual constitution is considered when creating their dietary plan. We use food and their unique properties, as well as specific cooking methods, to balance the individual.

While a specific dietary plan is useful in treating any type of condition, there are certain dietary choices that we can make to help nourish our skin from within. Here we will discover some of these dermatology-friendly foods and habits that will benefit most people, regardless of constitution or other presenting health issues.


Chinese Medicine Diet Tips

To best support our skin, we want to eat foods that are nourishing, lubricating, and replenishing to the blood. This helps the skin to be radiant and moist by nourishing our yin. We also want to eat foods that promote healthy detoxification and blood circulation. Eating a variety of colors and flavors also helps to ensure skin health by providing the body with plenty of vitamins and minerals.


Foods to Choose

Goji berries








Lemon juice





Leafy green vegetables





Bok choy

Coix seeds


Mung beans

Adzuki beans






Black sesame seeds



Dandelion tea





Foods to Avoid

Fried and greasy foods

Very spicy foods

Processed sugars

Excessive dairy

Iced or frozen foods


(Icy or cold foods + sugar = sagging skin. Remember this next time you order a cold sugar laden coffee drink!)

Healthy Products for Beautiful Skin

What we put in our bodies has a major impact on the health of our skin – but so does what we put on our bodies. In our modern world, there are so many pollutants, bacteria, chemicals, and more harmful agents that have direct exposure to our precious skin. While we can’t prevent all of the nasties from reaching our skin, we can at least control the products that we use.

The Mei Zen Cosmetic Acupuncture system offers not only acupuncture therapy for radiant skin, but an entire product line dedicated to helping people reveal their best selves. Different skin types will need different types of products, and this system has something for everyone. Click here for guide on starting your healthy skin care routine.

Mei Zen Cosmetic Acupuncture is a complete unique approach to skin care. This style draws on traditional Chinese medicine as well as our modern understanding of the face, skin, and overall wellness. Read our blog to learn more about the basics of Mei Zen Cosmetic Acupuncture treatment and how this system and acupuncture work to help you feel beautiful inside and out. For a more thorough understanding of your skin and a complete plan for radiant, youthful skin, contact us to learn more about starting your Mei Zen journey.


To learn more about how Cosmetic Acupuncture can help you, click here.