Herb Talk: tonics
Tonics are herbs that strengthen the body in some way. Either supporting a particular organ system or energy. In traditional Chinese medicine we have herbs that boost different types of energy in the body: qi, blood, yin and yang.
Astragalus (huang qi) – Qi tonic
Boosts the body’s energy and immune function. Helps treat fatigue, poor appetite, nausea and diarrhea, as well as reducing water retention.
Longan (long yan rou) – Blood tonic
Nourishes the blood, which provides a calming effect to treat insomnia, fearfulness, poor memory or dizziness.
Walnut (hu tao ren) – Yang tonic
Strengthens the kidneys which helps with low back or knee pain, as well as frequent urination of large volume . It has a warming and moistening nature which can help soothe the lungs and treat constipation.
Lily bulb (bai he) – Yin tonic
Soothes the lungs for dry cough. I often recommend steaming lily bulb with pear and adding honey for residual dry cough. Lily bulb also has a calming effect when there is restlessness, irritability and insomnia.
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