What your face says about your health

Read your body’s signals

When it comes to assessing the state of your health, it may be that the answers are written all over your face. According to Chinese medicine, your face provides a wealth of information about the health of your inner organs, while orthodox medicine also relies on facial signals to help diagnose certain conditions. To start reading your body’s signals, check out these seven signs to take note of.

Forehead acne

According to Chinese medicine, the forehead is closely linked to the digestive system, while the area between the eyebrows is linked to the liver. Over-indulgence of rich foods and alcohol may cause temporary spots in this area, while frequent breakouts could indicate poor nutritional habits. To help get rid of these spots, try to maintain a healthy diet and stay hydrated. You may also wish to get tested for suspected food intolerances, which can affect both the liver and digestive system.

Congested cheeks

While spots on the cheeks may have simple causes such as cosmetics or unclean pillowcases, this area is also thought to be linked to the lungs. Spots in this region can therefore be indicative of respiratory distress, with smokers, asthmatics and allergy sufferers being prone to breakouts or broken capillaries on the cheeks.

Spots on the chin and jaw line

Spots on the chin and jaw line are generally thought to be due to hormonal fluctuations and may appear on women at particular stages of their menstrual cycle. Persistent spots in this area, however, may be a symptom of a hormone imbalance or endocrine disorder such as Polycystic Ovary Syndrome, so it may be worthwhile getting your hormone levels checked if you are experiencing other symptoms such as missed periods or weight gain.

Dark circles and under-eye bags

Dark circles and under-eye bags are mostly hereditary, however if you find they make a sudden appearance or get significantly worse, this may point to certain health problems. The under-eye area is thought to be linked to the kidneys, so changes here may suggest dehydration or a build-up of toxins. To counteract this, drink more water and cut down on alcohol, caffeine and salt. Alternatively, circles could be caused by anaemia, due to vitamin B12 or iron deficiencies.

Unusual tongue

According to Chinese medicine your tongue is a map to your health, and orthodox medical professionals also use the tongue to identify various conditions. Anaemia (caused by a lack of iron, folate or vitamin B12) is one such condition - with symptoms of the illness including a burning, sore or red tongue. Alternatively, a blue discolouration of the tongue (cyanosis) could indicate a lack of oxygen in the blood stream, while white lesions on the tongue could be a sign of oral thrush.

Excessive facial or body hair

For females suffering from excessive body or facial hair (hirsutism), this can be a frustrating and embarrassing problem. However, it can also be a symptom of an underlying endocrine disorder, which may need to be checked out. One of the most common female endocrine disorders is Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS) - a condition which frequently results in excessive body hair as well as acne, weight gain and irregular periods.


Ending on a high note, moles may often get bad press, however, providing you look after them properly (by applying sunscreen, staying out the sun and checking them regularly), moles may actually be a good sign for your health. A research team from King's College London found that those with over 100 moles have tougher bones and are less likely to develop osteoporosis, while research has also suggested that those with moles are likely to have healthier eyes and heart. 

Comments (3)

  • DeedeeW 'Very interesting'

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  • GoneFishin 'I have dark undereyes and if I get spots it's usually on my cheeks - these are my more troublesome face areas and i have asthma, lung problems and kidney trouble!'

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  • FredericaBimble 'the one about the moles is true! I always thought it was curious that I've been in many instances where I should have had a broken bone but have only ended up with one in my entire life - and that took a lot to break it and it was a tiny bone as well. Also, when I went into the army over 20 years ago, my eyesight was 20/10 which is better than 'perfect' eyesight. I was shooting from 38-40 out of 40 with my rifle. I also have low blood pressure and will most likely never have problems with my heart. '

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