He Shou Wu:  A Traditional Chinese Herb Rich In History - And Hair?

He Shou Wu: A Traditional Chinese Herb Rich In History - And Hair?

May 31st 2024

He Shou Wu And Its Rejuvenating Properties. 

The Discovery 

According to legend, Mr. He lived during the Tang Dynasty and was initially weak and sickly. One day, he stumbled upon a peculiar vine in the forest and decided to try consuming its root. This root was later identified as He Shou Wu (Polygonum multiflorum). After consuming the root regularly, Mr. He experienced significant health improvements. His gray hair gradually turned black again, and he regained his lost vitality. He became stronger, more energetic, and looked much younger. This miraculous transformation led to the herb being named after him, He Shou Wu, which translates to "Old Mr. He's Black Hair." The story of Mr. He’s remarkable recovery spread widely, solidifying the herb's reputation in traditional Chinese medicine as a powerful remedy for aging and vitality loss.

Health Benefits of He Shou Wu

Usage of He Shou Wu

He Shou Wu Raw He Shou Wu is used for its laxative properties and body detoxification but should be used cautiously.

He Shou Wu (Zhi He Shou Wu) This commonly used form is processed with black beans to enhance tonic properties and reduce laxative effects. It nourishes the blood, supports liver and kidney health, and promotes longevity.

How to Make a Decoction of He Shou Wu

Making a decoction of He Shou Wu involves simmering the herb to extract its beneficial compounds. Here's a step-by-step guide:

  1. Ingredients:
    • 30 grams of He Shou Wu (prepared or raw)
    • 4 cups of water
  2. Preparation:
    • Rinse the He Shou Wu thoroughly.
    • Place the herb in a pot with 4 cups of water.
  3. Simmering:
    • Bring the mixture to a boil.
    • Reduce heat and let it simmer gently for about 30-45 minutes.
  4. Straining:
    • After simmering, strain the liquid into a clean container.
    • Discard the remaining herb solids.
  5. Consumption:
    • Drink the decoction warm.
    • You can split it into two doses and consume it throughout the day.

Why A Decoction?
Using He Shou Wu as a decoction is preferred because this method maximizes the extraction of the herb’s beneficial compounds. The prolonged simmering process helps to release the active constituents, such as antioxidants and other bioactive compounds, into the water. This makes them more readily absorbable by the body. Decoctions also allow for the use of prepared He Shou Wu, which is processed to enhance its tonic properties and reduce any potential laxative effects associated with the raw form. This method ensures that you receive the full therapeutic benefits of the herb in a concentrated form.

Historical and Modern Uses

Traditional Uses
In TCM, He Shou Wu strengthens the liver and kidneys, nourishes blood and essence, promotes hair growth, improves sexual function and fertility, and enhances vitality and longevity.

Modern Research
Studies show He Shou Wu supports liver function, protects against liver damage, improves cognitive function and memory, enhances immune response, and reduces cholesterol levels, improving cardiovascular health.

He Shou Wu, also known as Fo-Ti, is a highly esteemed herb in traditional Chinese medicine with extensive rejuvenating properties. Backed by both historical use and modern research, it offers numerous health benefits, including anti-aging, hair health, liver and kidney support, immune enhancement, and cardiovascular health. With its wide range of benefits and strong safety profile, He Shou Wu is a reliable and valuable herb for anyone looking to improve their health naturally.

For more detailed information, refer to PubMed articles (source, source, source) and WebMD (source).Anti-Aging and Longevity.