Nature: sweet, neutral
Enters: Lung, Spleen, Kidney
Actions: Nourishes Lung Yin; tonifies spleen Qi, nourishes spleen Yin; mildly nourishes kidney Yin and Jing, generates marrow; relieves Xiao Ke (wasting and thirsting syndrome).
• Lung Yin (and Qi) deficiency: dry cough; maybe streaks of blood in sputum; possible flushed cheeks and irritability to due heat.
• Kidney Jing deficiency: weakness and soreness in the lumbar region and knees, dizziness, weakness in the lower extremities, lightheadedness, blurred vision, prematurely grey hair.
• Spleen and stomach Qi deficiency: poor appetite, fatigue, weak pulse, lassitude.
• Spleen and stomach Yin deficiency: dry mouth, poor appetite, loss of taste, dry stool, dry, red tongue.
• Lung, stomach, and kidney Yin (and Qi) deficiency: diabetes / xiao ke / wasting and thirsting disorder (whether in upper, middle, or lower jiaos, or a combination): polyuria, polyphagia, polydipsia, emaciation, irritability, fatigue.
• Very safe, will not trap an EPI in the body, not greasy. Liu: “Typical Taoist herb.”
• Can be taken long-term.
• May lower blood pressure.
• Beneficial in tuberculosis.
• Adaptogenic effects.
• Topical (alcohol tincture) for fungal infections.
• The raw form (less used) is more of a Yin tonic than a Qi tonic.
• The prepared form (common), which is wine-steamed, is more of a Qi tonic than a Yin tonic.
• Bensky/Gamble classify this herb as a Qi tonic.
• Michael Tierra compares this herb, rather than Yu zhu, to American Solomon’s Seal (an error?), and considers American Polygonatum to be as good or better than the Chinese variety.
Dr. Wei Li (Portland, Oregon): Good non-warming immune tonic.
Chinese Medical Herbology & Pharmacology: “The ideal herb to treat yin-deficient cough, nourish the lung, and benefit Qi. In combination with other herbs or alone.”
Oriental Materia Medica (Hong-Yen Hsu): Antifungal, antibacterial, hypotensive, hypoglycemiant.
Heiner Fruehauf: An An Shen (spirit calming) herb, important in Gu Zheng (Gu parasite) formulas (because of emotional disturbance common in patients with Gu).