Five Element Cycle
The Five Elements are all interconnected in specific cycles, creating an intricate web, as the diagram illustrates. If an element is depleted or excessive, this balance can be thrown off, possibly affecting one or more elements. One example is the generating cycle. Liver/Wood can generate Heart/Fire, which means fire increases when wood is added to the fire. Stress is the emotion that directly affects the Liver/Wood, which in turn would lead to our Heart/Fire rising. The heart is the organ pertaining to our mental health and quality of sleep. When we experience insomnia the next element in the cycle, Spleen/Earth, will be affected. Weakness of the spleen/stomach is often caused by over thinking and bad dietary habits. Our Spleen/Earth directly affects our Lungs/Metal. A healthy spleen will lead to healthy lungs as earth generates metal (metal grows in earth). Metal generates Kidney/Water, as healthy lungs will support our kidneys' functions. Although imbalances occur, they can be corrected with the use of TCM.