Chinese Circadian Rhythm – the Liver


circadian rhythm is any biological process that displays an endogenous, entrainable oscillation of about 24 hours. These 24-hour rhythms are driven by a circadian clock, and they have been widely observed in plants, animals, fungi, and cyanobacteria.

The clock is reset as an organism senses environmental time cues of which the primary one is light. Circadian oscillators are ubiquitous in tissues of the body where they are synchronized by both endogenous and external signals to regulate transcriptional activity throughout the day in a tissue-specific manner. The circadian clock is intertwined with most cellular metabolic processes and it is affected by organism aging.

The concept of an “Organ Clock” in Chinese medicine is a useful tool in understanding why this occurs. In Chinese medicine, energy or qi (chi, prana, mana, universal life-force) , moves through the body’s meridians and organs in a 24 hour cycle. Every two hours the qi is strongest within a particular organ and its functions within the body.

Chinese Circadian Rhythm – the Liver

According to Chinese medicine, the window from 1am – 3 am, correlates to the liver (sluggish, stagnant liver). All sleep between 10pm-3am is most beneficial for your health.

1am – 3am LIVER- WOOD*)
Functions: The liver is responsible for detoxifying our bodies and processing emotions each night. The liver stores the blood and governs the qi of the body. It is associated with the tendons, nails and eyes. Think back to a night when you had too much to drink or a period of intense frustration at work. Did you wake up around between 1-3am unable to fall back asleep? From a Chinese medicine perspective your liver was overloaded with and struggled to do its work.
Symptoms of imbalance: Explosive outbursts of anger, bottled up emotions, resentment, irritability, moodiness, frustration, high blood pressure, chest distention, PMS, bitter taste in mouth, digestive upset, dizziness, migraine headache, breast tenderness, blurred vision, eye floaters, red face, tendonitis, frequent sighing.

chinese-body-clock (1)

Chinese Circadian Clock

Being aware about this chinese circadian rhythm clock you are able to track some symptoms you might have. If you always e.g. waking up at 2am it is related to liver and deep sleep time. If your liver is sluggish or stagnant, it is good to do liver detox. Liver is your third brain (brain, gut, liver) and most of the dis-eases starts in liver according to holistic authors.

*) The Chinese Law of the Five Elements

If you have any questions comment below. Or if you want coaching for liver detox send me a message.

Health, Love & Light ♡

-Sari Helen

Coach, Counsellor, Healer, Therapist


Key words;  TCM chinese traditional medicine, health, holistic living, health news

DISCLAIMER: The information provided on this blog is only for informational purposes and should not be considered to be healthcare advice or medical diagnosis, treatment or prescribing. You should consult with a healthcare professional before altering or discontinuing any current medications, treatment or care, starting any diet, exercise or supplementation program, or if you have or suspect you might have a health problem.


Sources: Wikipedia, Richard Gerber; Vibrational Medicine,

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