3 Steps for a Younger Appearance

A Buddha statue lying on a bed.

Sleeping at the right time is one of the three steps to looking younger. (Image: Chris Gladis via Flickr)

The condition of one’s skin, complexion, and hair have a considerable influence on a person’s appearance. Traditional Chinese medicine techniques include these three steps for maintaining a younger appearance.

To have a younger appearance, follow these steps

1. Sleep at the right time

When you have a dull skin tone, fine lines and spots, and gray hair, you will look several years older. These symptoms are related to a weak spleen, weak stomach function, and a decline in kidney qi due to unhealthy habits. For example not eating on time or eating unhealthy food will damage the stomach and can easily make your face turn pale; a lack of sleep can cause kidney qi deficiency.

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Sleep is very important to promote a younger appearance. From 11 p.m. to 1 a.m. is the time the Gallbladder Meridian gets detoxified, and from 1 a.m. to 3 a.m. is the time the Liver Meridian gets detoxified. Sleeping during these two periods is the best time for the body to rejuvenate. When the Gallbladder Meridian and Liver Meridian can detoxify well, the body reduces the accumulation of waste products, and the liver system remains in good condition.

2. Eat the right food at the right time

Only when you have enough qi and blood to bring nutrition to the whole body can your body normalize the metabolism of the skin, avoid the accumulation of old dead skin cells, and cultivate shiny skin to let the skin look younger. The sufficiency of qi and blood depends on a healthy spleen and stomach. Therefore, a healthy diet and regular eating habits are very important.

First of all, avoid poor eating habits such as eating processed foods, desserts, flavored drinks, etc., and make sure to eat an appropriate amount of staple foods such as rice or noodles. Processed food will burden the body and affect the skin’s gloss. Flavored drinks will lower the body temperature and the metabolism, which will darken the skin. Because the skin is metabolized every 28 days, once the metabolism slows down and the cycle is too long, keratin accumulates and is reflected in your face.

Eating whole grains can help give you a younger appearance.
Not eating whole grains will also have a negative effect on the function of the spleen and stomach. (Image: FotoshopTofs via Pixabay)

Traditional Chinese medicine talks about “five grains for nourishment” and “spleen governing muscles.” Not eating whole grains will also have a negative effect on the function of the spleen and stomach. Deficiency of the spleen will also loosen the muscles and produce fine lines. In addition, you can also eat more yellow, black, and red-colored foods, which are beneficial for the spleen, stomach, kidneys, and cardiovascular system.

Based on traditional Chinese medicine, yellow-colored foods such as rice, lotus seeds, pumpkins, sweet potatoes, and corn pass into the spleen and stomach. Black-colored foods such as black sesame seeds, black beans, black rice, black dates, black fungus, and foods rich in anthocyanins pass into the kidneys. Red-colored foods such as tomatoes, red apples, carrots, red beans, red dates, strawberries, and cherries pass into the heart.

As for what time to eat, follow your biological clock and never skip breakfast. The Stomach Meridian is active from 7 a.m. to 9 a.m. Eating breakfast during this time can activate the energy of the Stomach Meridian and increase the metabolic rate. The Heart Meridian is active from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. and the Small Intestine Meridian is active from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. Either of these time spans is a suitable time to eat lunch. The Kidney Meridian is active from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m., making it a good time to eat dinner.

3. Massage acupuncture points

Massaging specific acupoints can clear the meridians, promote the circulation of qi and blood, maintain the normal function of the skin, and help you have a younger appearance. Most people can massage these points by themselves at home. The method is to massage each acupoint with your fingers 10 times and apply deep pressure to the points.

Where to find the Hegu point.
Where to find the Hegu point. (Image: Monika Wisniewska via Dreamstime)

Two acupoints on the hands and feet to improve one’s complexion

If you want to look young, of course, a healthy complexion is very important. The Yang Ming Meridian carries a lot of qi and blood. Massaging the Hegu acupoint on the Yang Ming Meridian of the hands and the Zusanli acupoint on the Yang Ming Meridian of the feet can make qi and blood flourish.

To find the Hegu point (LI-4), straighten your thumb and index finger together; the protruding part of the muscle between your thumb and finger on the back of your hand is the Hegu point.

The Zusanli point (St-36) is four finger widths down from the bottom of your knee cap, along the outer boundary of your shin bone.

The location of the Zusanli point.
The location of the Zusanli point. (Image: Monika Wisniewska via Dreamstime)

Massaging acupoints around the eyes tightens the skin and makes the eyes look more energetic.

The acupoints around the eyes include Jingming, Cuanzhu, Yuyao, Sizhukong, Tongzilian, Sibai, and Taiyang. You can massage these acupoints in any order. Massaging these points can improve the brightness of your eyes and reduce the looseness of the skin around your eyes. That looseness negatively impacts a person’s youthful appearance.

The acupoints around the eyes.
This image of a Buddha’s head was modified to show where the acupoints around the eyes are located. (Image: via Cleaveland Museum of Art)

The Jingming point (Bl-1) is on the face in the depression slightly above the internal corner of the eye.

The Cuanzhu point (Bl-2) is located near the medial end of the eyebrow, in a depression directly above the inner corner of the eye.

The Yuyao point (EM3) is in the middle of the eyebrow, right above the pupil.

The Sizhukong point (TE-23) is the concavity at the outer end of the eyebrow.

The Tongziliao point (GB1) is located in the cavity on the outside corners of the eye socket.

The Sibai point (St-2) is straight down from the pupil, in the depression of the infraorbital frame.

The Taiyang point (EM5) is between the lateral end of the eyebrow and the external canthus. The concavity is about a finger-width backward from where the outer frame of the eye crosses the extension line of the eyebrow.

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