Nature: bitter, neutral
Enters: Liver, Heart, Large Intestine, Lung
Actions: Promotes blood circulation, dispels blood stasis; moistens the large intestine, promotes bowel movement; unblocks the menses.
• Blood stasis: dysmenorrhea, abdominal pain after childbirth, traumatic injury, flank pain, Lung abscess, intestinal abscess with immobile abdominal mass.
• Large intestine dryness: constipation.
• Alcohol extractions have a weak anticoagulant effect.
• Traditionally this herb is used with its peel. To promote bowel movement, remove the tip.
• Contraindicated in pregnancy.
• Sometimes double kernels occur (they look like “Siamese twin” kernels) – these are said to be toxic.
Hsu: Anticoagulant, antiphlogistic, detoxicant, laxative.
DY: Tends to dispel blood stasis in the lower part of the body, in the abdomen, and in the organs; very slightly nourishes blood.
• Like Xing ren, Tao ren is slightly toxic. The toxicity is localized in the superficial skin and the tip of the seed. The preparation, scalded Tao ren, eliminates this toxicity. However, in this form, Tao ren is less powerful at quickening the blood and dispelling stasis.
• With Hong hua: Hong hua is stronger than Tao ren at moving blood, while Tao ren is stronger at dispelling stasis. Together, they complement and reinforce each other to effectively quicken the blood, dispel stasis, engender blood, and stop pain. For specific indications and notes on this combination, see Hong hua in this category.