Nature: bitter, acrid, warm
Enters: Stomach, Large Intestine
Actions: Kills parasites (particularly tapeworms [pig], and also hookworms, pinworms, roundworms, flukes, Fasciolopsis); reduces accumulation, eliminates food retention; regulates Qi, promotes Qi circulation; promotes urination; slightly promotes bowel movement..
• Parasitic infection. This does not kill tapeworms, but paralyzes the head and upper body. It is often combined with Nan gua zi, which paralyzes the rear end of the tapeworm. Since this herb has a slight action to promote bowel movement, it does not need to be combined with a purgative to expel the parasites.
• Food retention and Qi stagnation in the stomach and large intestine: distention, constipation.
• Retention of harmful fluid: edema, swollen and painful legs.
• Malarial disorders.
• This herb can be drunk at a cool temperature to reduce the possibility of side effects.
• For best results against parasites, soak the herb in water for a few hours before decocting.
• This herb is an enormously popular recreational drug in India (mixed with burnt lime, areca leaf, and other additives and flavorings which may alter its effect): stimulates cholinergic receptors, especially those causing salivation; possible aphrodisiac; stimulates peristalsis, bronchoconstriction, bradycardia. Habitual use increases the appetite, diminishes the sense of taste, may cause diarrhea, increases risk of periodontal disease, and stains the oral cavity red.
Heiner Freuhauf: A Sha Chong (kill worms or parasites) herb, important in Gu Zheng (Gu parasites) formulas.
Dui Yao (Phillipe Sionneau): Breaks and downbears the Qi.
• With Mu xiang to move the Qi, disperse food stagnation, and stop pain.
For such indications as:
1. Lack of appetite, abdominal and epigastric distention and pain
aggravated by pressure, difficult defecation or dry stools due to food
stagnation in the stomach and intestines. (Bing lang should be stir-fried
2. Dysentery or diarrhea with tenesmus and abdominal pain due to Qi
stagnation. (Use scorched Bing lang and roasted Mu xiang.)
3. Constipation or difficult defecation due to Qi stagnation. (Use
scorched Bing lang.)
• With Nan gua zi to expel tapeworms (and other intestinal parasites). For this indication, 15-100g Bing lang and 30-120g Nan gua zi are used. Two hours after drinking a decoction of these two herbs for tapeworm, a decoction of 10-20g Da huang is taken.
Hsu: Antiviral, antifungal; antimydriatic effect; stimulates parasympathetic nervous system; stimulates intestinal peristalsis.
Dose: 6-12g (60-120g alone for tapeworms)