Many women suffer with hormonal imbalance and don't realize it can actually be treated. I repeatedly hear from women that a doctor says nothing can be done, or that their mild suffering is 'normal'. I'm hoping to demonstrate how Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) looks at health differently and actually distinguishes between many different hormonal imbalances that western medicine generally over looks.

In Traditional Chinese Medicine, we regard the various organ systems as vital in overall health. The heart, liver, spleen and kidney are especially important in female hormone balance. We also focus on the blood and Qi (energy) to be strong and proper balance between Yin and Yang.

Below is a list of various common conditions we see in women, and their respective TCM diagnoses.

Menstrual Cycle Irregularities

Figure 1: TCM and acupuncture can be used to address a number of menstrual irregularities.

  • Periods always early: Heat in the Blood or Qi deficiency
  • Periods always late: Blood deficiency or stagnation of Blood or Cold
  • Periods irregular: stagnation of Liver-Qi or Liver Blood, or Spleen deficiency


  • Heavy blood loss: Heat in the Blood or Qi deficiency
  • Scanty periods: Blood deficiency. Stagnation of Blood or Cold


  • Dark red or bright red: Heat in the Blood
  • Pale: Blood deficiency
  • Purple or blackish: stasis of Blood or Cold
  • Fresh red: Empty-Heat from Yin deficiency


  • Congealed blood with clots: stasis of Blood or Cold
  • Watery blood: Blood or Yin deficiency
  • Turbid blood: Blood-Heat or stagnation of Cold


  • Pain before the periods: stagnation of Qi or Blood
  • Pain during the periods: Blood-Heat, stagnation of Cold or Blood stasis
  • Pain after the periods: Blood deficiency




  • White discharge: Cold from Spleen or Kidney Yang deficiency, exterior Cold-Damp, or stagnation of Liver-Qi
  • Yellow discharge: Heat, usually Damp-Heat in the Lower Burner
  • Greenish discharge: Damp-Heat in the Liver channel
  • Red and white discharge: Damp-Heat
  • Yellow discharge with pus and blood in a woman after menopause: Toxic Damp-Heat in the Uterus


  • Watery: Cold-Damp
  • Thick: Damp-Heat


  • Fishy smell: Damp-Cold
  • Leathery smell: Damp-Heat


Fig 2: TCM and Acupuncture can be used during all stages of pregnancy.

  • Infertility: Blood or Kidney-Essence deficiency, or Damp-Heat in the Lower Burner or stasis of Blood in the Uterus
  • Vomiting during pregnancy: Stomach and Penetrating Vessel deficiency
  • Miscarriage before 3 months: Blood or Essence deficiency. Kidney deficiency
  • Miscarriage after 3 months: Liver-Blood stasis or sinking of Spleen-Qi


Figure 3: TCM and Acupuncture can be helpful after the baby is born.

  • Nausea and heavy bleeding after delivery: exhaustion of the Penetrating Vessel
  • Sweating and fever after delivery: exhaustion of Qi and Blood
  • Postnatal depression: usually Blood deficiency leading to Heart-Blood deficiency


The point of this article is not for you to completely understand the TCM diagnoses. My goal here was to show you that TCM can actually identify where there is room for improvement and we can attempt to treat these things.

Booking in with a naturopath or TCM practitioner will give you an opportunity to discuss your case. A comprehensive intake is required to fully understand your current state of health and goals. With all the information, the naturopath or TCM practitioner will make an Asian medicine diagnosis and build an acupuncture protocol accordingly.

About the Author - Dr. Johann de Chickera

man facing camera

Dr. Johann is a fully licensed Naturopathic Doctor. His approach emphasizes the importance of living a healthy lifestyle and improving one’s health naturally. Dr. Johann obtained a Doctor of Naturopathy at the Canadian College of Naturopathic Medicine (CCNM). Education at CCNM is a vigorous four years, with a curriculum involving biomedical sciences, physical diagnosis, clinical nutrition, traditional Chinese medicine and acupuncture, botanical (herbal) medicine, physical medicine, homeopathy and lifestyle management.

While Dr. Johann has a general practice, he focuses on fertility, hormonal imbalances, gut health, and autoimmune disease.

To book in please call us at (519) 442-2206 or click here.

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