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  • Writer's pictureJackie Koenig, L.Ac.

How to Support Your Liver With Food According to TCM

Learn about our Chinese Medicine-Approved food list for keeping your Liver happy this season.

Two painterly green limes, one cut in half

Our Liver and Gallbladder do a lot of work for us all year 'round. They are highlighted during the Springtime, and of the 5 Elements they belong to Wood. One way we can support a healthy Liver and Gallbladder is by including certain foods in our diet... check out our suggestions below!

Support Your Liver With Foods That Are:


Nature reveals seasonal clues for what we should be eating when. Green is abundant in our gardens and landscape during Springtime. Additionally, chlorophyll-rich foods help rejuvenate the Liver, so it's time to eat all of the GREENS! Make sure you're including sprouts, chard, kale, collards, cilantro, and parsley in your meal planning. Chlorella, spirulina, and wheat grass are great additions as well.


Sour is the associated "taste" for the Wood Element, so lemons, limes, grapefruit, and all types of citrus are also helpful to the body. The acidity helps cut the fats that you may have stored up during wintertime. Additionally, "sour" fermented foods like sauerkraut and pickles are also beneficial as they support a healthy gut biome, helping us build more blood which the Liver stores (in TCM philosophy).

Bitter or Pungent

Bitter taste helps cleanse the blood and aids in the Liver's detoxing abilities, so look to dandelion greens, spinach, and radicchio for inspiration there. Pungent foods like arugula, radishes, and mustard greens help move stagnant Liver Qi and keep things flowing.

Remember: Keep it Light!

Just like the sprouts popping up around us, it's best to "keep it light" in terms of exercise, meal size, and alcohol intake during the Spring season. This helps the Liver and Gallbladder work efficiently and smoothly, enabling us to feel healthy and energetic during all the activity this season offers us!

“Come with me into the woods where spring is advancing, as it does, no matter what, not being singular or particular, but one of the forever gifts, and certainly visible.” Mary Oliver

Need Personalized Support? Acupuncture and Herbs Can Help!

Acupuncture can be great for helping Liver Qi stagnation flow again and support the Liver in finding a more balanced state. There are many time-tested herbal formulas that can also be great partners along this journey as you seek solutions for stress management, PMS, mental and physical tension, headaches, and other issues we blame a stressed Liver for.

Make an appointment today with us at Hidden Root Acupuncture to see how we might be able to help!


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