Korean Acupuncture and

Wood Body Type (Hepatonia)

By Che Bong Cho, LAc

Body Type Acupuncture and Herb Center


Korean Acupuncture has very specific techniques. This technique places more of an emphasis on eight different body types or constitutions.

These body types are named as follows: Medal yang (pulmotonia), Medal Yin (colonotonia), Wood Yang (hepatonia), Wood yin (cholecystonia), Earth Yang (pancreotonia), Earth Yin (gastrotonia), Water Yang (renotonia), and Water yin (vesicotonia). The The theory is that one should know one’s own unique constitutional physiology as well as general physiology, in order to lead a healthy life.

 This article will focus on the wood body type. Wood means that the liver is the strongest organ Qi among all the organs Qi. The term Qi in traditional oriental  medicine is best described as vital energy or the inner vitality that determines our ability to resist, and also recover from various diseases.

The theory is that each of our organs has a “partner organ” and that they work together as if they were a couple. In the wood yang body type, organ strength is in the following order: the liver is paired with the gall bladder > the kidney is paired to the bladder > the heart to the small intestines > the spleen to the stomach > and the lung to the large intestine. In other words, the lung has the weakest organ Qi.

 The nature of the liver is absorption of various elements that the body is exposed to, but the nature of the lung is excretion of these elements from inside to outside. The wood yang body type is characterized by a magnificent physique, narrow shoulders, a somewhat projected abdomen and large waist and can easily gain weight.  The personality of someone with a wood yang body type is less talkative, conservative, easily adjusts to the environment, not musical, somewhat slow moving and looks lazy, easily understands, embraces and forgives people, a strong investment nature, and greedy for material things.  The physiological characteristics include feeling good feeling after a sweat or sauna, somewhat higher blood pressure, some trouble with anesthesia or coming back earlier than normal from anesthesia, easily tired after talking a lot, and some problems running very far  Also, people with wood yang body type like spicy foods, do not like fish, have irregular bowel movements and get sleepy after eating too many vegetables

 We can easily see the specific nature and physiological character of people with wood yang body types. Specifically, they can easily get arthritis, osteoporosis, neuralgia, diabetes, hypertension, liver disease, respiratory diseases, arteriosclerosis, scapula pain, and may have hallucinations

 Korean acupuncture theory believes that people with this body type should eat more meats and root vegetables to protect their lung Qi. Also, specific acupuncture and oriental medicine can help certain health issues in people with wood body types.




Acupuncturist and Herbalist of Oriental Medicine

Cho is licensed in Virginia


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Fax: 703-370-2831



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Alexandria, VA 22314

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