Brian is an author of international
renown and public speaker. He is currently writing his book
Chinese Medicine: A Practical Guide to Optimal Healing.
Brian practices acupuncture and Chinese herbal medicine
in sunny San Diego, California.
How about 8 Natural beauty tips? Here ya go...
here to read a version of this article with links to herbal
I am an acupuncturist and herbalist - so what can
I tell you about beauty?
A lot. Here's why:
The number one natural beauty tip I can give you
is to take your health seriously. In Chinese medicine, we know
that natural external beauty is a reflection of inner health
and well being. Often, the solution to external beauty problems
is an internal one. That means foods and herbs. In the case of
skin problems, herbs can be use to create creams or wraps and
In Chinese medicine, we treat problems like acne,
blemishes, and other skin problems, hair loss, and premature graying
of the hair. Some of this you may need to see a Chinese medicine
herbalist for, but some of it you may be able to deal with yourself.
I'm going to give you natural beauty tip after natural beauty
tip to help you do just that.
Natural Beauty Tip #1 - Eyes Lacking Luster
What does it mean? You can see it in babies and
young children - bright, glowing eyes. Our oldest Chinese medicine
classic (written between 200-500 B.C.) states that "the essence
of the internal organs ascends to the eyes." The Bible says something
similar, "Your eyes are windows into your body. If you open your
eyes wide in wonder and belief, your body fills up with light."
Clear and glittering (shining) eyes indicate vitality of mind
and essence. Dull, clouded eyes reflect a disturbed mind, and
weakened essence - this often happens in people with long term
and deep emotional problems.
How can you fix it? Well, first of all, if you
have some emotional problems, work through it with a professional-
either a counselor, therapist, or someone within your religion.
This is one part of getting to the clear, vibrant personality
that shines through in bright eyes. It may take a while to get
there. Second, you can take herbs and eat foods that benefit the
Probably the best Chinese herb for the eyes is
lycium fruit (gou qi zi). Other herbs are black sesame seeds (hei
zhi ma), and privet fruit (nu zhen zi). Good foods for the eyes
include shepherd's purse, undried raspberry (fu pen zi), and animal
Natural Beauty Tip #2 - Bags Under Your Eyes
Bags under the eyes indicate
Kidney-system (root energy) deficiency, blood stagnation, or allergies.
Respectively, the solutions are to increase energy and minimize
overwork; get more movement and circulation; and find the allergy
cause, eliminate it, and take anti-allergenic herbs and foods.
The Kidney-system energy is limited. If you overwork,
have too much sex, or use more energy than your digestive system
can produce, you'll dip into this limited energy fund. This can
lead to more than circles under your eyes- you can end up with
premature aging and hair loss, impotence and infertility, and
ankle, knee, and lower back problems. If that's your problem,
try to practice moderation, eat better, and take supplemental
herbs and foods like black cohosh, Chinese chive, mutton, walnut,
oysters, pork, dried rehmannia (sheng di), Chinese yam (shan yao),
and horny goat weed (yin yang huo).
Blood stagnation can mean sharpn stabbing pains;
clots and dark blood in the menstruation; irregular menstruation;
and hard spots in the abdomen. If you have this, try celery, rose,
yellow soybean, seaweed, mung bean, corn, eggplant, cucumber,
and hemlock parsley (chuan xiong).
For allergies, get both IgG and IgE done for both
external (skin test) and food allergies (blood test). If you find
something substantial, avoid it! For food and herbs, try garlic,
fresh ginger, royal jelly, chicken, beef, chestnut, astragalus
(huang qi), kudzu vine (ge gen), and welsh onion (cong bai).
Natural Beauty Tip #3 - Acne
This is literally too much heat - your face has
become a volcano just to let it out! Try mung bea, seagrass, seaweed,
Chinese hawthorn (shan zha), Job's tears (yi yi ren), and purple
sage (dan shen). Avoid spicy foods, greasy foods, and fried foods.
Try some raw vegetables, too.
Natural Beauty Tip #4 - Dry Skin
Moistening herbs and foods are soy, spinach, asparagus,
millet, barley, salt, seaweed, apple, tangerine, pinenut, persimmon,
peanut, pear, honey, oysters, and clams. A seaweed facial wrap
would be nice, too!
Natural Beauty Tip #5 - Eczema
Try guava, clam, irish potato, he shou wu, wild
chrysanthemum, mugwort, Job's tears (yi yi ren), and asian dandelion
(pu gong ying). Avoid spicy foods, greasy foods, and fried foods.
Natural Beauty Tip #6 - Psoriasis
Try turnip root leaf, vinegar, grapefruit, black
plum (wu mei), cloves (ding xian), and dang gui (aka dong quai).
Natural Beauty Tip #7 - Prematurely Graying Hair
This can happen for two reasons- either you have
a root energy (Kidney system) deficiency (for more information
and solutions, see the Kidney deficiency information
up under natural beauty tip #2), or you have what is called
'hot blood.' The second one happens with bleeding, nosebleed,
skin ulcers, and urinary difficulties. For hot blood, take black
soybean, processed dried persimmons, processed rehmannia (shu
di huang), and dried rehmannia (shu di huang).
Natural Beauty Tip #8 - Premature Aging
This is another Kidney-system deficiency.
Try walnut, chicken, duck, he shou wu, Chinese
ginseng, deer antler velvet (the deers aren't harmed! Lu rong),
astragalus (huang qi), lycium fruit (gou qi zi), horny goat weed
(yin yang huo), caterpillar larva fungus (dong chong xia cao),
and red date (da zao).
- Sionneau & Gang. The Treatment of Disease in TCM: Volume
- Lu. Chinese Herbs with Common Foods: Recipes for Health and
- Pitchford. Healing With Whole Foods.
- Maciocia. The Foundations of Chinese Medicine.