The Importance Of The Kidney And Water Element In Chinese Medicine

In Edina Chinese medicine, if you have a balanced water element, this means that you are not one to sell out your principles, you are a person of great integrity, and you are constant and resilient. You also have a lucid mind that absorbs knowledge by observing life, which makes you wise beyond your years. You have a soothing presence that calms everyone around you. Your thoughts run deep and are introspective, and that you are evasive, articulate, and clever.

Water Element relates to winter, the time when we replenish our energy reserves by going into hibernation. In a person’s life, the Water Element gives us the chance to leave our mark on humanity. It represents birth and death as well. This element is all about our DNA and our accumulated intelligence.

When our Water Element is out of balance or is prevented from fully expressing itself, you will lack the qualities described above, and over time, as the imbalance becomes more and more severe, you may eventually lose them all. Rigid belief patterns replace integrity; exhaustion replaces resilience; catatonic despondency replaces lucidity; introspection transforms into phobic fears; isolation replaces evasiveness; and cleverness turns into absentmindedness.

It’s impossible to segregate the body from the mind in Chinese medicine. When we nourish our Kidney energy, we can address the emotional imbalances pertaining to the Water Element; by curing emotional problems related to the Water Element, we can strengthen our Kidney energy. Fear is the greatest emotion of a Deficient Kidney. This specific type of imbalance is characterized by irrational anxiety and fear in a person’s daily life instead of fear for a real danger.

The organs directly affected by the Water Element are the bladder and kidneys, but the organ energetic systems that Chinese medicine refers to is a lot more complicated than just the physical aspects of these organs. Since there’s no way to separate your mind from your body, when you treat your ‘Kidney’ energy, you rectify emotional problems related to the Water Element; when you heal emotional difficulties related to the Water Element, you enhance and reinforce your Kidney energy.

The Kidney strengthens Chi that governs over our lives from birth to death and it’s also where our Essence resides; it is intimately connected to pro-creation, physical growth, and transition to old age.

A person with a problematic Water Element will not possess have the endurance and vitality and needed throughout his life to endure, more so when stressful times arrive.

Since the Water Element is the key to our ability to reproduce, a deficient Kidney will lead to reproductive problems like sexual dysfunction and infertility in both genders. One function of our Kidney Essence is to provide residence to our Ancestral Qi, which, in Western medicine, is more or less equal to our DNA. According to traditional Chinese medicine, the energetic system of the Kidney is made up of the hypothalamus, pituitary gland, adrenal, and thyroid gland.

When we get older, our Essence becomes more and more depleted as gleaned from a weak libido, loose teeth, and graying hair. Chinese herbal medicine can be used to slow down the progress of aging.

Emotional and Physical Symptoms that may develop when our Water Element is out of balance:

Anxiety attacks

Tinnitus or Ringing in the ears

Adrenal Exhaustion

Premature graying

Birth defects


Panic attacks

Numbness and pain along the energy channels

The need to sustain energy in the afternoon by taking in stimulants such as coffee

Low back pain

Lack of libido

Knee pain

Kidney disease




Hormonal imbalances

Heel pain

Hair loss or thinning


Easily fatigued

Puffiness and dark circles under the eyes

Chronic urinary tract infection