Banxia,半夏 (pinellia rhizome)
stops vomiting, promote vomiting, rids of phlegm nodules, calming, lower pressure in the eyes.

Cangzhu, 蒼朮 (atractylodes lancea Thunb., A chinensis Koidz.)
The functions of cang zhu are: for treatment of yeast infection and dries dampness and flatulence; strengthens digestion; expels wind-dampness; for diarrhea with vomiting; edema with fullness of the abdomen; induces sweating in patients unable to sweat; headaches, body aches, solar plexus pain, and pain in extremities due to wind-cold-dampness, and edema in lower limbs etc. Modern research also shows that it can lower blood sugar and expel sodium.
(Source: Dictionary of Chinese herbs)

Dahuang, 大黃 (Rheum officinale Baill.)
To treat: lack of bowel movement, dysentry, blood clots, tumour, red and painful eyes, abdominal-distention and/or pain, blood in stool, hemorrhoidal bleeding, urination burning, nose bleeding, coughing out blood, sore extremities, edema, jaundice, lesions, burns and scalding (external application).
(Source: Dictionary of Chinese herbs)

Danshen, 丹參 (Salviae miltiorrhizae)
Salvia (Chinese danshen 丹參) refers to the root of Salvia miltiorrhiza, sometimes described as Chinese sage or red sage root. Any herb of the Salvia genus may be called sage, but most people are familiar with the common garden plant-and the common Western kitchen herb-obtained from Salvia officinalis. There are significant differences in medicinal components of the tops and roots of the Salvia plants that influence their uses. The Western sage leaves are used medicinally to treat dyspepsia and excessive perspiration. Salvia root, as employed in Chinese medicine, is different in nature from the other sage herbs, despite the botanical relationship.

Danshen is an annual sage plant, Salvia miltiorrhiza (Labiatae, Laminaceae) which grows in China, Mongolia, Korea and Japan. In China, it is found in hilly areas of the west, southwest and southeast. S. miltiorrhiza is among the most popular medicinal herbs used in China. It has been used in the treatment of stroke since 1970, angina and heart attack, as an antihypertensive and a sedative. S. miltiorrhiza contains several compounds that are pharmacologically active, especially the diterpenoids known as tanshinones. A related plant, Salvia columbariae, from California, USA also contains tanshinones, especially cryptotanshinone. This plant has been used by Californian Indians to treat people suffering from strokes.
(Source: MDidea; Chinese Medicine Journal)

Danggui, 當歸 (Radix Angelicae sinensis, Chinese angelica root)
Danggui has been used as a tonic for blood and for regulating the menses, lubricates bowels to correct constipation, reduces swelling, expels pus, relieves pain. Danggui wei (tail) is being used in condition of blood stasis and clots.
(Source: Dictionary of Chinese herbs)

The medicinal functions include: nurturing the uterus; lowers blood lipids, anti-platelet coagulation, promotes production of red cells; dilates coronary arteries and improve circulation volume; anti oxidation and rid of free radicals; improves the immune system; serves as an anti-cancer agent; and anti inflammatory.

Dihuang, 地黃 (Rehmannia)
Dihuang is being used as a blood tonic, usually for treating weakness caused by tuberculosis, vomiting blood, nose bleeding, coughing blood, bleeding in the uterus. Medium dosages of di huang may strengthen function of the heart, while large doses could be toxic. It could also increases blood pressure, other medical functions include: small doses constrict the blood vessels and large doses dilate the blood vessel; diuretics; decreases blood sugar and inhibits carbohydrates to convert into blood sugar.
(Source: Dictionary of Chinese herbs)

Dilong, 地龍 (Pheretima)
Pharmaceutical name is Lumbricus. Its major functions are said to be: anti-histamine and calming asthma; expand bronchi; antipyretic; sedative and anti-convulsion; lower blood pressure; diuretic effect. The main applications include treatments for high fever and spasms, convulsions; painful joints due to arthritis and paralysis; heat type of wheezing/asthma; injuries and pain; edema and difficulty in urination.
(Source: Dictionary of Chinese herbs)

Dongchong xiacao, 冬蟲夏草 (Cordyceps sinensis, Caterpillar Fungus)
The mushroom species Cordyceps sinensis is an insect parasitizing fungus of the ascomycetes family, found at high altitudes on the Qinghai-Tibetan plateau. This fungus lives primarily in the larvae of one particular species of moth, Hepialus armoricanus.

A kind of mold, Cordyceps sinensis spawn invades into the body of a silkworm which is an insect and grows, multiplies making the protein of the insect its source of nutrition and makes the host insect a mummy. Passing by winter, Cordyceps sinesis forms a fruit body in the epidermis of the insect at the time when a temperature and a humidity becomes high and it becomes a mushroom. Cordyceps sinensis is mysterious mushroom like this.It is occasionally found growing on other moth species as well. The normal range of this fungus is above 2000 metres elevation, and it has been found as high as 6000 metres. There are also many other species of the genus Cordyceps, which all seem to have potent biologically active compounds present. The genus has been shown to produce some potent antibiotics, immune stimulants and antitumour agents.

It has only been in the last few years however that Science has had the ability to thoroughly analyze this mushroom, and identify the bioactive compounds present.

Cordyceps sinensis has long been used in folk medicine throughout Asia. It has been used as an important nourishing tonic. Other functions include: improves auto-immune system; protects kidneys from toxins; protects kidneys from exhaustion; protects liver from toxins and treats and prevents cirrhosis of liver; protect the heart from the damaging effect of ouabain ; anti-arrhythmia; anti-rejection effect in cornea transplant; antibiotic effect; and inhibits contraction of smooth muscles.
(Source: Dictionary of Chinese herbs)

Duhuo Jisheng Tang, 獨活寄生湯
The basic ingredients for this traditional formula include:
duhuo 獨活 (Radix Angelicae Pubescentis) 12g
jisheng 寄生 (herba visci) 20g
duzhong 杜仲 (cortex eucomiae) 12g
niuxi 牛膝 (Radix Achyranthis Bidentatae) 12g
xixin 細辛 (Chinese wild ginger) 3g
qinjiao 秦艽 (Radix Gentianae Qinjiao) 12g
fangfeng 防風 (Radix Saposhnikoviae divaricatae) 12g
gandi ??20g
baishuo 白芍 (Radix Paeoniae alba) 12g
danggui 當歸 (Radix Angelicae sinensis) 12g
chuanggong 川芎 (Radix Ligustici Chuanxiong) 12g
dangshen 丹參 (codonopsis root) 12g
yunling 雲苓 12g
yaocao ?? 6g
guizhi 桂枝 (cinnamon twig) 6g
(Source: Dictionary of Chinese herbs, Gov of Macao’s glossary)

Fuling, 茯苓 (poria, sclerotium of tuckahoe, china root, hoelen)
Functions: diuretics, reducing plasma glucose, tranquilizing, inhibits bacteria, relaxing effect on smooth muscles, improves immune system.
(Source: Dictionary of Chinese herbs)

Fufang, 複方
Fufang in Chinese herbal medicine means a formula comprising multiple herbs.

Ginkgo biloba, 銀杏
Ginkgo ( Ginkgo biloba ) is one of the oldest living tree species and its leaves are among the most extensively studied botanicals in use today. Unlike many other medicinal herbs, ginkgo leaves are not frequently used in their crude state, but rather, in the form of a concentrated, standardized ginkgo biloba extract (GBE). In Europe and the United States, ginkgo supplements are among the best-selling herbal medications and it consistently ranks as a top medicine prescribed in France and Germany.

Ginkgo has been used in traditional medicine to treat circulatory disorders and enhance memory. Scientific studies throughout the years lend support to these traditional uses. Emerging evidence suggests that GBE may be particularly effective in treating ailments associated with decreased blood flow to the brain, particularly in elderly individuals. Laboratory studies have shown that GBE improves blood circulation by dilating blood vessels and reducing the stickiness of blood platelets.

Ginkgo leaves also contain two types of chemicals (flavonoids and terpenoids) believed to have potent antioxidant properties. Antioxidants are substances that scavenge free radicals — damaging compounds in the body that alter cell membranes, tamper with DNA, and even cause cell death. Free radicals occur naturally in the body, but environmental toxins (including ultraviolet light, radiation, cigarette smoking, and air pollution) can also increase the number of these damaging particles. Free radicals are believed to contribute to a number of health problems including heart disease and cancer as well as Alzheimer’s disease and other forms of dementia. Antioxidants such as those found in ginkgo can neutralize free radicals and may reduce or even help prevent some of the damage they cause.
(Source: University of Maryland Medical Centre)

Gouteng 鉤藤 (Uncaria rhynchophylla)
Uncaria rhynchophylla is an ivy-like plant, where hooks have been used for hypertension, infantile convulsion, and so on in oriental traditional medicine. The curved thorns on the stems are antispasmodic, carminative, febrifuge and hepatic. A is used in the treatment of infantile convulsions, headaches, dizziness, hypertension and apoplexy. The should not be overcooked. Medical functions include: sedative effect: lower the excitement of CNS helps treatment of epilepsy; lowering blood pressure effect (but does not cause peripheral vasodilation) but old stems without thorns do not possess the anti-hypertension effect; anti platelet coagulation.
(Source: Plants for a Future, Dictionary of Chinese herbs)

Honghua, 紅花 (Flos Carthami Tinctorii, Safflower, carthamus)
The flower of hong hua serves as a laxative and diaphoretic. Hong hua can be used as a diuretic and to calm the nerves and soothes hysteria. It supports the heart and liver. It helps promote circulation, dissolves clots, and can help induce menstruation. Safflower helps with post childbirth pains, stiffness and pain in joints, and internal bleeding. It can be taken hot to produce strong perspiration to remedy a cold. Pregnant women should avoid using safflower.
(Source: Raintreee Health)

Huzhang, 虎杖 (Polygoni Cuspidati Rhizoma)
Huzhang’s medicinal functions are: anti viral; anti leptospirosis; anti fungal; relaxes the bronchial smooth muscles, expels phlegm, and suppresses asthma and cough; lower blood pressure and lipids; stops bleeding in external injuries; inhibits pain; astringent; anti inflammatory; antibiotic, like: pseudomonas aeruginosa, staphylococcus aureaus, moraxella (branhamella), catarrhalis, streptococcal, escherichia coli.

Huzhang has been applied on: jaundice, gall bladder stones, blood stasis with menses stoppage, yeast infection, rheumatoid arthritis, physical injuries from impacts, inflammation of the bronchi, lobar pneumonia, poisonous snake bites, scalding injuries, acute hepatitis, urinary tract infection, boils, stoppage of menses due to heat in the blood, breast cancer, menopausal bleeding disorder.
(Source: Dictionary of Chinese herbs)

Huzhangdanshenyin, 虎杖丹参飲
(derived by researchers at the Department of Andrology, Xiamen TCM Hospital Affiliated to Fujian TCM College)
Huzhang (虎杖) 15g
Pu gong ying (蒲公英; Herba Taraxaci Mongolici cum Radice, dandelion) 15g
Zi cao (紫草, radix arnebia, stoneweed) 15g
Huangqi (黃芪, Radix astragali) 15g
Danshen (丹參, Salvia miltiorrhiza, or Chinese sage) 15g
Chi shao (赤芍, root of common peony) 15g
Danggui (當歸, Radix Angelicae sinensis, roots of Chinese angelica) 15g
Honghua (紅花, Flos Carthami Tinctorii) 10g
Shouwu (首烏, Radix Polygoni Multiflori, Chinese knotweed) 15g
Nuzhenzi (女貞子, Fructus Ligustri Lucidi, privet fruit) 15g
Sheng di (生地, Rehmannia Radix) 15g
Xianlingpi (仙靈脾, Herba Epimedii, epimedium) 15g

Huangbo, 黃柏 (Phellodendro chinense Schneid.)
The main content of huang bo include: berberine (1.4%-5.8%), phellodendrine, magnoflorine, palmatine, obacunone, limonin etc. Its traditional functions are to treat vaginal bacterial infection or yeast infection, bacterial infection of the bowel, and infectious jaundice, wet and smelly groin area; spermatorrhea; night sweating and boils and sores. Modern applications include acting as an antibiotic which inhibits Staphylococcus aureaus, pnumococcus, and Shigella dysenteriae; lowers blood pressure and blood sugar, as well as being anti-Trichomoniasis.
(Source: Dictionary of Chinese herbs)

Huanglian su, 黃連素 (Berberine)
Berberine is an isoquinoline alkaloid isolated from herb plants, such as Cortex phellodendri (huang bai, 黃柏) and Rhizoma coptidis (huang lian, ??). Huang lian and huang bai have used as “heat-removing” agents. In addition, berberine has been reported to anti-inflammatory effect both in vivo and in vitro. Inflammatory is tightly related to immunity. Berberine (or plant material containing berberine) has also been documented as having anti-microbial, antitumour and anti-inflammatory properties as an oral medicine.

Huangqi, 黃芪 (Radix astragali, astragalus root)
Medicinal functions of huang qi include: lowers blood pressure, vaso-dilation; prolongs diuretic effect; lessens proteinuria; protects liver function; regulates blood sugar.
(Source: Dictionary of Chinese herbs)

Huangqin, 黃芩 (Scutellaria radix)
The medical functions of huang qin include: huang qin‘s ingredient baicalin can promote secretion of bile and promote movements of extra body intestines of rabbits; alkaloids of huang qin possesses antihistamine effect; baicalein has anti-toxin effect, inhibits permeability of capillaries and anti acetylcholine and anti anaphylaxis effects, it also inhibits acute asthma attack and allergenic eczema; prevents atherosclerosis; ingredient wogonin has anti hepatitis B virus effects. In modern medicine, the antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties of wogonin have been widely used in clinical treatment of inflammatory diseases, including atopic dermatitis, hyperlipemia, and atherosclerosis. It has been reported that wogonin has the potential for therapeutic use in the treatment of atherosclerosis and restenosis based upon its antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, antithrombotic, and antiproliferative activities.
(Source: Dictionary of Chinese herbs; Molecular Pharmacology Vol. 60, Issue 3, 507-513, September 2001.)

Jia wei xiao yao san, 加味逍遙散 (Kamo-shoyo-san, a 700-year-old formula)
Kami-shoyo-san consists of 10 medicinal herbs, including chai hu (柴胡, Radix Bulpleuri), bai shao (白芍, Radix Paeoniae), dang gui (當歸, Radix Angelicae Sinensis), and gan cao (甘草, Radix Glycyrrhizae), bo he (薄荷, Mentha haplocalyx), fu ling (茯苓, Poria cocos), mu dan pi (牡丹皮, Paeonia suffruticosa), zhizi (梔子, Gardenia jasminoides), and ginger (Zingiber officinale). In Taiwan, its concentrated form was the most popular herbal drug for depression and anxiety and alike disorders. It is also a popular herbal drug to treat insomnia in Japan.

The formula first appeared in Song Dynasty (between 960 and 1279 AD.) in a TCM classic He Ji Ju (太平惠民和劑局方). It was said to relieve muscular pain, dizziness, uneasiness, hot flashes, extreme sweating, insomnia, decreasing appetite and abnormal menstrual symptoms. In modern times, it has been used to treat many neuropsychiatric disorders, as well as liver diseases.

Literature shows that the formula has been shown to relieve panic attacks, anticipatory anxiety and agoraphobia. It has been used to treat irregularity of menstruation and anxiety involved with a menstrual cycle.

When used as an adjunct to carbamazepine (carbamazepine is an anticonvulsant and mood stabilizing drug, used primarily in the treatment of epilepsy and bipolar disorder. It is also used to treat schizophrenia and trigeminal neuralgia) in patients with bipolar disorders, the Kamo-shoyo-san combo treatment resulted in significantly greater clinical response rate in depressed patients. Kamo-shoy-san has proved to provide additive beneficial effects in bipolar patients, particularly for those in the depressive phase.

Leigongteng, 雷公藤 (Tripterygium wilfordii Hook. f., Radix Tripterygium wilfordii, three-wing-nut)
Leigongteng can be used for anti-inflammation, kills worms, resolves toxins, treating proteinuric renal disease, used as immunosuppressive agent on autoimmune diseases. Modern applications include proliferative arthritis, inflammation of spinal cord, lupus, purpura, kidney inflammation, asthma, tuberculosis of the lungs, psoriasis, dermatitis and Reiter syndrome. However, lei gong teng is highly toxic and and large consumption could be toxic to the liver. Toxic reactions include: dizziness, palpitation, weakness, nausea, vomiting, stomach ache, diarrhea, pain in liver and kidney areas, bleeding in the digestive tract, even respiration and circulation exhaustion and death.
(Source: Dictionary of Chinese herbs)

Lingzhi, 靈芝 (Ganoderma lucidum mushroom, reishi)
Lingzhi is the name for one form of the mushroom Ganoderma lucidum, and its close relative Ganoderma tsugae, which grows in the northern Eastern Hemlock forests. These two species of bracket fungus have a worldwide distribution in both tropical and temperate geographical regions, including North and South America, Africa, Europe, and Asia, growing as a parasite or saprotroph on a wide variety of trees.

Ganoderma lucidum enjoys special veneration in Asia, where it has been used in traditional Chinese medicine as a herbal medicine for more than 4,000 years, making it one of the oldest mushrooms known to have been used in medicine.

According to The Chinese Herbal Materia Medica (本草綱目), lingzhi may be classified into six categories according to their shapes and colors, each of which is believed to nourish a different part of the body.

1. Red – heart
2. Purple – joints
3. Green – liver
4. White – lungs and skin
5. Yellow – spleen
6. Black – kidneys and brain

Lingzhi may possess some anti-tumour, immunomodulatory and immunotherapeutic activities, supported by some studies on polysaccharides, terpenes, and other bioactive compounds isolated from fruiting bodies and mycelia of this fungus. Lingzhi has been found to be anti-inflammatory, antiviral, anti-parasitic, anti-fungal, antidiabetic, anti-hypotensive, and protective of the liver. It has also been found to inhibit platelet aggregation, and to lower blood pressure, cholesterol and blood sugar.

Because of these properties, lingzhi has been regarded as blood pressure stabilizer, antioxidant, analgesic, a kidney and nerve tonic. It has been used in bronchitis prevention and in cardiovascular treatment, and in the treatment of high triglycerides, high blood pressure, hepatitis, allergies, chemotherapy support, HIV support, and even for fatigue and altitude sickness.
(Source: Wikipedia)

Liu Shen Wan, 六神丸 (“Six Spirits Pills”)
The 250-year-old formula consists of 6 herbs: niu huang (牛黃, Calculus bovis), she xiang (麝香, Moschus moschiferus L.), chan su (蟾酥, Bufo bufo gargarizans antor), xiong huang (雄黃, realgar), bing pian (冰片, Dryobalarops aromatica Gaertner. f.), and zhen zhu (珍珠, pearl). The pill has been used as an anti-inflammatory agent. It also controls pain and treat symptoms such as sore throat and sensitive gums.

Longkui, 龍葵 (Solanum nigrum Linne)
Stem and leaves possess anti-pyretic, diuretic, ridding of toxin effects; being used in treatment of acute kidney inflammation, chronic bronchitis, throat cancer, larynx Cancer, uterus cancer. Raw fresh part of plant and unripe fruit are poisonous. If eaten, the symptoms include: dilated pupils, dizziness, nausea, dry mouth and tongue, loss of ability to talk, loss of consciousness. In serious cases: spasm of the abdomen, vomiting, diarrhea, paralysis of the respiratory system and death.
(Source: Dictionary of Chinese herbs)

Mudanpi, 牡丹皮 (cortex moutan; root bark of Paeonia suffruticosa Andrews)
Paeonol, an effective component of Cortex Moutan, has been proved to have a variety of effects including: anti-bacteria, anti-inflammation, relieving pain, anti-sensitive, strengthening the immune system. Clinical tests prove that it can inhibit the penetration of capillary vessel, so as to diminish inflammation and remove swelling. Study also indicates that paeonol has ataractic effect against muscle tissue and skin, so it can substitute anti-irritant and anti-inflammatory medicine used in skin and mouth. Also it has unique natural mint smell, so as to remove peculiar mouth smell. And it also can reduce pain and toothache when brushing. Dispelling wind and arresting pain. It can be used as pharmaceutical material of preparations for myalgia, rheumatic pain, neuralgia, coetaneous pluribus, etc.

Nuzhenzi, 女貞子 (Fructus Ligustri Lucidi, privet fruit)
There are two parts of nu zhen zi which are of medicinal value: the fruits and the leaves. The medicinal functions of the fruits include: regulate the immune system; anti inflammatory; anti cancer; having an effect on circulatory system; lower blood sugar; and anti oxidization.

The medicinal functions of the leaves are: resist general lack of oxygen; improve capillary circulation; and having an effect on the cardio-vascular system.
(Source: Dictionary of Chinese herbs)

Niuxi, 牛膝 (Radix Achyranthis Bidentatae)
The main componets of niu xi are: isocyasterone, 5-epicyasterone, sengosterone, cyasterone, amarasterone A and B, capiterone, poststerone, ecdysterone and precyasterone etc.
(Source: Dictionary of Chinese herbs)

Niuxi has been used to deal with weakness and pain in loin and knees, tight and spastic limbs, irregular menses, postpartum pain in abdomen due to blood stasis, blood in urine, physical injuries and difficulty in bending knees.

Pugongying, 蒲公英 (Herba Taraxaci Mongolici cum Radice, dandelion)
Functions include: promotes bile secretion; protects liver; inhibits staphylococcus aureus, streptococcus pneumoniae, pseudomonas aeruginosa, shigella spp., neisseria meningitidis, corynebacterium diphtheriae, mycobacterium tuberculosis, ECHO virus, and Leptospira; improves digestion; serves as diuretic and mild laxative.
(Source: Dictionary of Chinese herbs)

Qiong yu gao (瓊玉膏)
Ingredients of Qiongyugao include: ginseng, di huang (地黃, rehmannia), bai fu ling (白茯苓, poria), and honey. TCM texts say Qiongyugao is good for lung diseases, such as tuberculosis, and helps relieve dry coughing.

San Miao San or San Miao Wan (三妙散, 三妙丸)
San Miao San mean “Three Wonders Powder”. The formula can be dated as far back in history as around 1500s during the Ming Dynasty. The three ingredients of San Miao San are:
(1) Cangzhu (蒼朮, atractylodes lancea Thunb., A chinensis Koidz.).
The main content of cang zhu includes hinesol, ?-eudesmol,atractylodin and atractylon.
The functions of cang zhu are: for treatment of yeast infection and dries dampness and flatulence; strengthens digestion; expels wind-dampness; for diarrhea with vomiting; edema with fullness of the abdomen; induces sweating in patients unable to sweat; headaches, body aches, solar plexus pain, and pain in extremities due to wind-cold-dampness, and edema in lower limbs etc. Modern research also shows that it can lower blood sugar and expel sodium.
(2) Huangbo (黃柏, Phellodendro chinense Schneid.)
The main content of huang bo include: berberine (1.4%-5.8%), phellodendrine, magnoflorine, palmatine, obacunone, limonin etc.
Its traditional functions are to treat vaginal bacterial infection or yeast infection, bacterial infection of the bowel, and infectious jaundice, wet and smelly groin area; spermatorrhea; night sweating and boils and sores. Modern applications include acting as an antibiotic which inhibits Staphylococcus aureaus, pnumococcus, and Shigella dysenteriae; lowers blood pressure and blood sugar, as well as being anti-Trichomoniasis.
(3) Niuxi (牛膝, Radix Achyranthis Bidentatae)
The main componets of niu xi are: isocyasterone, 5-epicyasterone, sengosterone, cyasterone, amarasterone A and B, capiterone, poststerone, ecdysterone and precyasterone etc.
Niu xi has been used to deal with weakness and pain in loin and knees, tight and spastic limbs, irregular menses, postpartum pain in abdomen due to blood stasis, blood in urine, physical injuries and difficulty in bending knees.

Sha yuan ji li, 沙苑蒺藜 (Astragalus complanatus R. Br.)
To treat: spermatorrhea, premature ejaculation, achy loin, dizziness, frequent urination, enuresis vagina discharge, and neurasthenia.
(Source: Dictionary of Chinese herbs)

Shouwu 首烏, or He shou wu 何首烏 (Radix Polygoni Multiflori, Chinese knotweed)
Shou wu has been famous for its ability to turn grey hair into “black hair”. It’s also used in the treatment of hyperlipemia, neurasthenia, split personality, premature white hair, nerve injuries, skin wind rash, and constipation. Other functions include: treatment of eczema, sores, carbuncles, goiter, scrofula, inflammation of lymph nodes, spermatorrhea, vagina discharge, and vulvovaginitis.
(Source: Dictionary of Chinese herbs)

Tianma, 天麻 (Gastrodia elata Bl.)
The earliest account of tin ma was recorded in Shennong Bencao Jing (神農本草經, “The Herbal Encyclopedia of Shennong”), which is considered the oldest Chinese medicine text in history. The name(s) of author(s) have been lost through time but the book is believed to be at least 2200 years old.

The encyclopedia lists tian ma as being able to: treat aching of the brain; and to “calm one’s emotion” and to help people sleep. In modern times, tin ma has been used to treat hypertension, dizziness, headache, and somatic paralysis to name a few. Tin ma is also considered to be anti-epileptic, anti-arthritic with the abilities of calming emotions (and thus depression) and soothing pain.

It is mainly produced in Sichuan, Yunnan and Guizhou provinces. Other producing regions include Northeast China and North China. Nowadays, wild tin ma is rare and its prices are dear. Tin ma farms are abundant in China.
(Sources: Baidu Encyclopedia, Dictionary of Chinese Herbs)

Wuweizi, 五味子 (Fructus Schizandrae)
Fructus Schizandrae is a deciduous woody vine and is dioecious, meaning individual plants are either male or female, thus both male and female plants must be grown. It is very tolerant to shade. Its Chinese name comes from the fact that its berries possess all five basic flavours: salty, sweet, sour, pungent (spicy), and bitter.

Medicinally it is used as a tonic and restorative adaptogen with notable clinically documented liver protecting effects. The primary hepatoprotective (liver protecting) and immuno-modulating constituents are the lignans schizandrin, deoxyschizandrin, gomisins, and pregomisin, which are found in the seeds of the fruit.

Lignans schizandrins have been found to prevent liver damage, stimulate liver repair, and stimulate normal liver functioning. Schizandrins are claimed to inhibit and even reverse the destruction of liver cells by stimulating the production of cytochrome p-450 which is a protein involved in extramitochondrial electron transport in the liver. In another study, schizandrins have scavenging effects on active oxygen radicals.

In TCM, the wu wei zi:

* stops asthmatic cough
* treats spermatorrhea
* treats chronic hepatitis
* treats night sweats
* promotes saliva
* quenches thirst
* calms emotion and palpitation
* helps prevent insomnia
* helps prevent liver damage
* help liver to metabolize drugs
* improves efficiency of brain activities
* lowers blood pressure
* as an anti-oxidant
* as a tonic for shen (kidney)
(Sources: Wikipedia, Dictionary of Chinese Herbs, Beneforce, Level1Diet,)

Wuyao, 烏藥 (radix linderae, combined spicebush root)
Wuyao, Radix Linderae extract, has been proved to be analgesic and anti-inflammatory. The components of Wu Yao include: lindestrene (???), lindestrenolide (????, ??????), linderenol (???), linderoxide (???), isolinderoxide (????), linderenone (???)?Wu Yao is said to have the functions of calming breathing, killing pain.
(Source: Pharmacopeia Online)

Xianlingpi, ??? (Herba Epimedii, epimedium)
Xian ling pi has been used to treat impotence, spermatorrhea, frequent urination , forgetfulness, withdrawal, and painful cold lower back and knees. It’s also used for treating lower back pain, dizziness, and menstrual irregularity.
(Source: Dictionary of Chinese herbs)

Xianhecao, 仙鶴草 (Sanguisorba officinalis root)
Sanguisorba officinalis root has been used in TCM to stop bloody dysentery, nosebleeds, and is applied topically to treat burns and insect bites.

Xiaoyao San, Xiaoyao Powder (逍遙散)
Mentha (薄荷, Bohe) is used with white peony root (白芍, Baishao ) and bupleurum root (柴胡, Chaihu) in the

Xiefengteng, ??? (Spatholobus suberectus vine)
Spatholobus suberectus is a traditional Chinese herbal medicine used to treat rheumatism, anemia, menoxenia, and other disorders.

Yege or gegen, 野葛, 葛根 (Pueraria mirifica)
The compounds that make Pueraria mirifica so special and different from other phytoestrogen plants are miroestrol and deoxymiroestrol. These two compositions posses highest estrogenic activity among the known phytoestrogens, due to structural similarity to estradiol of the main human estrogen in women’s body.

Pueraria mirifica also contains other chemicals that belong to isoflavones, e.g. genistein, daidzein, daidzin, genistin and coumestrol that are usualy found in soybeans. However, the estrogenic activity of miroestrol is much more potent than that of soy isoflavones.

Miroestrol is the second most estrongenic plant compound on earth. Recently its metabolic precursor deoxymiroestrol has been found to be even more potent than miroestrol.

A dedicated Thai scientist who has studied the plant for over a decade was able to prove that 200mg and 100mg of Pueraria mirifica could make improvements to wide ranging menopausal symptoms such as hot flashes, frustration, sleep disorder, skin dryness, high blood cholesterol, oligomenorrhoea and amenorrhea.
(Sources: Kwao Kreu Kao; What is miroestrol?)

Zhimu, 知母 (Anemarrhena Rhizome)
This herb is the rhizome of Anemarrhena asphodeloides Bge. (family Liliaceae), grown mainly in the provinces of Hebei and Shanxi. Dug out in spring or autumn, dried in sunlight after cutting off the rootlets, sliced, and used unprepared or stir-baked with salt water. The herb has been used for treating:

  • hyperpyrexia, hectic fever
  • polydipsia
  • cough with thick yellow sputum and difficult expectoration
  • constipation

(Sources: TCMedicine, Healthphone)

Zicao 紫草 (radix arnebia, stoneweed)
Zi cao has been used in preventing measles, jaundice, purpura, vomiting blood, nose bleeding, bleeding in the urinary tact, diarrhea with blood, boils, erysipelas, eczema, burns, and constipation.
(Source: Dictionary of Chinese herbs)

CM News’ glossary is still in the making….. You may also want to check out CMNEW”s compilation of Chinese-English terms on TCM.