Chinese herbs have been used for centuries to treat various and diverse ailments and to bring relief to many healthcare challenges. Not only are Chinese herbs effective in treating health issues, but they are also safe, having few if any, side effects when used in the right way. Rather than fighting diseases directly, Chinese herbs are used to improve the body’s immune system to fight diseases and this brings about wholesome health and well-being.
As one of the oldest forms of treatment, Chinese herbal medicine has been viewed as a singular healthcare discipline. However, that is not the case. Chinese herbal medicine is part of a wider healthcare complex known as Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM). TCM is a rich and complex system of healthcare practices with great diversity and application. TCM is comprised of three main components: herbal medicine, acupuncture and cupping. Herbal medicine is the most widely used TCM modality and it relies on the healing power of the curative agents found in the herbs to fight disease, optimize health and balance the body's energy.
Chinese herbal remedies work in different ways. Here are a few ways in which Chinese herbs improve your well-being.
The Yin Yang is the cornerstone of TCM. Yin is the negative energy while Yang is the positive energy. According to Chinese medicine, optimal health and well-being can only be attained if these two forces are in equilibrium. According to TCM practices, certain herbs that nourish the Yin should be taken regularly for optimal functioning of the respiratory, immune, circulatory and nervous systems. These Yin supporting herbs include Astragalus root and Ginseng for the lung and spleen health. Lycium root to boost the circulation and circulatory system. Shisandra berry fruits to improve energy and Dang qui root to boost the immune system.
To attain a healthy balance of Yin and Yang forces, you need to nourish the Yang as well. The Yang is directly associated with the urinary, hepatic, digestive and pancreatic systems and when you nourish it, you directly promote proper functioning of these systems.
Specific herbs that nourish the yang include Bupleurum for liver health and Hawthorn fruit for the digestive tract. Perilla leaf is and herb used for relaxation and Tangerine rinds promote healthy breathing.
According to TCM practices and beliefs, proper circulation is achieved by firmly establishing the health of the liver, kidneys, colon and skin. A well-conditioned circulatory system promotes holistic well-being by strengthening the immune system and ensuring that the internal organs are functioning properly.
The herbs that are helpful to improve circulation include Astragalus, Ginseng, Lycium fruit and Cornus fruit. These herbs nourish the blood by carrying essential nutrients to vital body organs and by facilitating proper elimination of toxins.
Improving liver function
The liver is one of the most vital organs in the body. It acts as a bridge between the circulatory, nervous and digestive systems. Any condition that affects the liver can often result in emotional turmoil and this stands to show just how connected these systems are. Proper liver balance can often be attained through herbs that support healthy liver function such as Ginger, Ginseng, Zhi Shi fruit and Licorice.
Chinese herbs have been found to be effective in promoting the overall health of the body. The holistic approach of Chinese medicine to treatment is to promote overall health and well-being. Take advantage of the benefits of Chinese herbs for a richer and fulfilling lifestyle.
BONUS! Cool Tip for a Hot Summer:
If you’re looking for a health-enhancing summer tea that tastes great hot or cold, try Chrysanthemum flower. (Yes, that flower that may be growing in your yard!) It’s been used in Traditional Chinese Medicine for centuries to support skin and eye health, to improve circulation, and, generally, to cool and calm the body if it’s irritated. This cooling quality has made it a perennial favorite in Asia during the summer, and it’s a daily staple of many poets and Taoists who have praised it for its life-prolonging effects.