An imbalance occurs when you have too much of some things and too little of others. If you put so much pepper in your soup that you can't taste the other spices, then you caused an imbalance in your flavoring.

It’s easy to remember the meaning of imbalance when you break the word into parts. You might recognize the prefix im- as a way to say “not.” Combine that with the familiar word balance, and you come up with something that is decidedly out of whack, or not balanced. It means that something is out of proportion, such as a trade imbalance between nations, meaning the amount of goods they sell to one another is not equal.

Definitions of imbalance
  1. noun
    a lack of balance or state of disequilibrium
    “a hormonal imbalance
    synonyms: instability, unbalance
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    a state of equilibrium
    type of:
    loss of equilibrium attributable to an unstable situation in which some forces outweigh others
  2. noun
    (mathematics) a lack of symmetry
    synonyms: asymmetry, dissymmetry
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    balance, correspondence, symmetricalness, symmetry
    (mathematics) an attribute of a shape or relation; exact reflection of form on opposite sides of a dividing line or plane
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    geometrical irregularity, irregularity
    an irregular asymmetry in shape; an irregular spatial pattern
    lopsidedness, skewness
    an oblique or slanting asymmetry
    radial asymmetry
    the absence of symmetry about an axis
    handedness, laterality
    the property of using one hand more than the other
    the property of favoring one foot over the other (as in kicking a ball)
    the property of favoring one eye over the other (as in taking aim)
    directionality, directivity
    the property of a microphone or antenna of being more sensitive in one direction than in another
    ambidexterity, ambidextrousness
    the property of being equally skillful with each hand
    left-handedness, sinistrality
    preference for using the left hand
    dextrality, right-handedness
    preference for using the right hand
    type of:
    spatial property, spatiality
    any property relating to or occupying space
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