Hope all is well! I thought I would talk about our tongues today, which is a part of my body that I have seen remarkable tranformations in over the years while undergoing my own journey to vibrant health. While we might not think to look at our tongues very often (or at all!), having a little peak, and monitoring it over time can be very telling.
Tongue reading is a whole skill onto itself, and some Chinese doctors are experts in it, and can diagnose specific illnesses from seeing spots and patches on specific parts of the tongue. I am in no way an expert on tongue reading, but there are a few generalizations we can make.
Our entire digestive tract is lined with a natural mucous membrane. This membrane is very sensitive, and naturally transparent. When we eat a diet consisting of preservative chemicals, GMO foods, pesticides, very acidic foods, etc., we irritate this delicate lining.
The mucous membrane is always trying to diffuse impacted mucus and toxic residue up from the colon, intestines, and stomach to the less impacted areas of the digestive tract, such as the throat, mouth (tongue), and sinuses. This occurs through the simple process of diffusion, which is really the movement of particles from areas of greater to lesser concentration. The great Professor Arnold Ehret called the tongue a “magic mirror” because as soon as the body has a chance to diffuse toxins out of the lower digestive organs, it will do so and mucus will migrate up through the lining of the stomach, up the esophagus, and into the mouth.
The coating on the tongue is therefore a good indicator off how much constipated mucus has accumulated in the digestive organs. When our breath is really bad, especially in the mornings, this can also be a good indicator of how compromised or backed up our systems are. (Please note: Bad breath along with a dry mouth can also be a side effect of prescription drugs, which interfere with proper saliva production). When our breath generally improves, even having good breath in the morning (wouldn’t that be nice!), that is a good sign that we are cleansing.
If we know we are backed up, have a thickly coated tongue or issues with bad breath(!), we know that we have some cleansing work to do. That occurs by eating more cleansing foods that increase metabolism, which include fresh produce and lots of greens, taking daily probiotic supplements, and buying organic food whenever we can. We must also give ourselves adequate time to go to the bathroom in the mornings and throughout the day, and cut out very acidic, clogging foods out, such as my 2 faves to dog on- dairy and soy. 🙂 When our diet improves we can also think about getting some gravity centered colonics, which can be very helpful in pulling out old garbage. These types of colonics can actually strengthen our colons because our own bodies are doing the work (unlike hydraulic pressure units, which uses electric pressure to push water in and out. These are the kind of colonics people like Dr. Oz dismiss as unnecessary and say weaken your colon over time. Those kind of colonics I don’t recommend at all).
So you may want to take a look at your tongue, and monitor it over the months as you improve your diet and begin to cleanse. Mine has really cleared up, and I am very happy to say that I don’t wake up with really bad morning breath (the way I used to! 🙂 ).
This is a great blog topic! I have a friend who specializes in shiatsu and Chinese medicine. She read my tongue a couple years ago and it definitely had some coating issues which I’ve vastly improved, but I still have a question for you. I eat a vegan, mostly organic, mostly soy-free diet with an emphasis on unprocessed, veggie-heavy meals. i do succumb to a bit of coffee every morning and don’t eat entirely raw though I’ve increased the rawness lately. My husband tells me my breath often smells milky. Obviously it’s not from milk (vegan for ten years…)so I’m assuming it’s, as you say, coming from some imbalance or accumulation down lower in my digestive track. Any ideas what would cause the milkiness or specific things I should do to improve?
HI Kelly! If you have increased your rawness lately, that could mean that you are kicking up a lot of toxicty, since the raw plant enzymes are so cleansing. This could cause an odor to emit, meaning the demon (old waste) is starting to wake up. I recommend incorporating cleansing methods to be sure your body is removing all that it kicks up. This includes taking a probiotic, skin brushing, and colonics!
Hi! I just found your blog and love it! I have a totally unrelated question…but I hope you can help me. I recently stopped eating red meat and hope to get to a place where I remove all meat from my diet. For now…I try to eat only certified organic meat and add more veggies to my diet. My problem is this….I have Oral Allergy Syndrome which means that whenever I eat raw fruits or veggies, I have a physical reaction. Specifically I feel as if I am going to be sick and have to spit the food out immediately. I would love to try some of the smoothies on your site, but I’m scared that I can’t. I have no problem eating the offending food if it is cooked, but a lot of nutrients are lost in the cooking process. Can I be just as healthy without eating raw fruits and veggies?
Hi there! A lot of times, allergies and reactions can greatly be helped as we work to make our body less acidic and more alkaline. People that are very acidic become nauseated from fruit. It is great you are working to cut out red meat and other animal products in the diet. I would focus on those shifts, and remember that that is a huge, huge improvement in your diet, even if you aren’t eating raw produce right now. When you cook veggies try to steam lightly sometimes, or to the point where you can handle it but while not getting sick. Over time, you can see if you reaction to raw food has diminished as a result of cutting out the meat and the other acidic foods.
I woke up with my tongue stuck to my pillow the other morning, I hate when my tongue does that
Great topic! I brush my tongue daily and I notice sometime I get a thick white coating. But that could be from crohn’s meds. Love that pic of you and the dog, adorable!
I have a question…I have started to eat mainly raw since the start of the year. I am a teacher and wake up at 6 am to start my day. Usually, I am not hungry for a big meak 1st thing so I’ve been having a smoothie on way to work (not a green one since I cannot invest in a VitaMix at this time) and then I will get hungry at about 8am. Before I started trying to eat mainly raw foods I would eat my Ezekial Cereal and soymilk at about 8am which would keep me full and give me energy for awhile. But now at 8am I’ve been having fruit and a Larabar. Then after I have my salad for lunch at like 12 I am exhausted and have no energy and feel like I need something else, like maybe something sweet, or maybe its some carbs I’m missing. I’ve been getting really moody at this time as well. I dont drink coffee, just my Yogi Tea in the morning which is made of cinnamon, cloves, black pepper, ginger, and black tea. Plus I live in CT & its cold here and Im wondering if I should start incorporating more warm foods for lunch or start eating the Ezekial Cereal again. I just have been experiencing such a lull from 12:30 on. I just wanted to get your take on this…thank you so much!!!!
You don’t necessarily need the vitamix to do the greens smoothie… I use my regular blender- it just takes longer and probably doesn’t have the same consistency as it would if I had a vitamix, but like you I can’t afford one right now.
HI Kristen, That is really hard to answer because I would have to look at your entire diet and lifestyle habits to fairly answer your question, and to see deficiencies and big issues. If you are interested in finding out about a consult, I think that might help you. My email is firstname.lastname@example.org. First off though, I’ll tell you that you should not eat anything at all in the morning until you are truly hungry! Don’t try to cram a smoothie in. Wait until your body cries out for food.
Hi Kimberly, do you think tongue brushing is worth doing on a regular basis?
Some swear by it but I never got into it. I think dry skin brushing is a better investment in time!
I recently discovered your site and I love it! I check multiple times of a day just to get a handle on all your great info and advice. I can’t remember what post I was reading, but you spoke about books you recommended and one of them I think was called Food Combining. I can’t find the exact post so I was wondering if you could give me the name/author of the book bc I know there are multiple books on the topic out there. I think it is something I should really explore, as I have struggled with intestinal problems for a long time.
Thanks so much!
HI Katrina! Why don’t you sign up for the RSS feed? That way you will know when I am posting automatically. 🙂 If you have struggled with intestinal problems we need to look at your overall foods first, and upgrading the quality. The first book I generally recommend to people is Eat to Live by Dr. Joel Furhman. Be sure you are taking a probiotic every day. If you can get your hands on some raw sauerkraut, that would be really beneficial for you to help starting to balance your intestines. xx Kimberly
Thanks so much for your response…it’s great to hear back in such a short time!
Hi. This is off-topic, but could you pretty please do a blog on daily supplements you’d recommend, especially for someone who can’t eat organic all the time and sometimes eats junk food (chips, cookies and so on). Thank you so much.
HI Nina, I don’t recommend the same supplements to everyone, as it depends on their health, lifestyle, diet, genetic makeup, etc. The one that I do think is essential for everyone is a daily probiotic, preferably taken on an empty stomach. But I will say if you aren’t getting any greens at all into your diet a green powder is far lower second place, but better than nothing! Like Green Vibrance. That is more easily absorbed in your body than most pills, which are synthetic. xx Kimberly
Hey kim- i was wondering if you know of any natural remedies for muscle spasams??? THX
I am visiting this blog first time. This is a nice topic and quite different.
Hi Kimberly! I’ve lately become a huge fan of your blog. It’s truly inspiring. Keep up the good work 🙂
I have an unrelated question about eating habits and relationships. I have been a vegetarian for 8-9 years and slowly shifting to even more healthy and raw lifestyle. I also do yoga. The problem is that my new found life partner strongly believes in mainstream food recommendations. He is a fit guy and feels that his dietary choices are the best – he’s not the one of us having those few extra pounds etc. I have to explain my choices to him all the time – why it is not good for me to eat dairy, why I don’t feel that I have to add more protein into my diet, etc. etc. Because he doesn’t have any problems with his skin or body, he thinks that his choices are better than mine.
I’m not trying to change his diet, only mine. That’s why I’m asking you for advise. Have you ever had similar problems? Do you have any ideas how to convince your loved one that more natural diet can be the best choice for me?
Thank you so much for your blog!
About a year ago I was seeing an acupuncturist for migraines…checking and reading my tongue was always the first thing she did and it really played a part in how she treated me…reading this reminds me of what you and I talked about earlier, it’s making sure the right foods at the right time in the right combination create the ideal recipe for how your body reacts to what you put in to it.
P.S. Thank you again for an amazing 90 minutes this morning Kimberly… I just saw your guest post on http://www.beautysnob.com as soon as we hung up!
Hi Kimberly, Who can I see in nyc that can “read” my tongue?
Great article (of Course) and so very true. I fell off the clean eating wagon this week (I’m blaming stress) and I feel like crap: migraine, night sweats, and my whole body aches (and yes, I have a thick tongue and bad breathe) – what a mess. I ate things that not only do you say are bad (soy and dairy – had lots of cheese this week – yuk) but my doctor has told to stay away from too. I’m a Celiac with rapid gastric dumping syndrome. I don’t even really want to eat this stuff – just can’t get off the train once I’ve hopped aboard. I’m the only one in my house that eats clean so the “bad stuff” is always around. Your blog has helped quite a bit and I love your recipes; any advise on what to do about stress eating?
Do you know of any good places in Orlando for Colonics? I not even sure what to look for. Thanks!
Is drybrushing better than brushing all over in the shower?
Brushing wet skin can stretch the skin and possibly cause sagging over time.
This nice blog i am impressed your blog
I was wondering if you can tell me where I can find Magnesium-Oxygen supplements?
I struggle to get you on facebook or twitter.