Chong Wei Zi
What is Chong Wei Zi?
Motherwort Fruit (chong wei zi, 茺蔚子), also known as Fructus Leonuri, refers to the fruit of Leonurus japonicus Houtt.
Also called Lion’s Tail, Motherwort is an upright, prickly bush with dark green leaves and furry purple or pink flowers. In ancient Greek culture, people used this plant to reduce anxiety during childbirth, and also as a tea or tincture for its potential medicinal properties.
In Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), Chong Wei Zi falls under the category of ‘Herbs that invigorate the blood’. Such herbs tend to stimulate the blood flow. In TCM, these herbs are usually used to aid blood circulation in cardiovascular conditions or menstrual irregularities, as well as to treat acute pains, certain tumours, cysts and hardened clots caused by blood stagnation.
Cold in nature, Chong Wei Zi can help individuals who have too much Heat in their body, such as those experiencing a yang excess or a yin deficiency, to restore a harmonious yin-yang balance in their body. Sweet in taste, Chong Wei Zi can slow down acute reactions, detoxify the body and has a tonic effect on the body by replenishing qi and blood. In particular, Chong Wei Zi targets the Spleen and the Liver.
Functions and Benefits of Chong Wei Zi
Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) shows that Chong Wei Zi has the following health benefits.
Chong Wei Zi can invigorate one’s blood and regulate menstruation. This herb is often indicated for symptoms such as irregular menstruation, dysmenorrhea, amenorrhea or postpartum abdominal pain caused by blood stasis.
Also, Chong Wei Zi can clear Heat, cools the Liver and brightens one’s eyes. Thus, Chong Wei Zi is effective in relieving red, swollen and painful eyes, headache, nebulae or conjunctivitis caused by Liver Heat. Also, Chong Wei Zi is used to treat Pterygium.
How to Use Chong Wei Zi
The recommended daily dosage of Chong Wei Zi is 6 – 9g, when used as a decoction. Alternatively, you may consume Chong Wei Zi in the form of pills or powder, or pound the herb into juice for consumption.
Chong Wei Zi and its supplements, such as pills and powder, may be found in herbal stores and Asian specialty markets.
Cautions and Side Effects of Chong Wei Zi
Chong Wei Zi should not be used by individuals experiencing Liver stagnation due to Liver-blood deficiency, continuous bleeding or pregnancy.
Do note that if you consume more than 20 – 30g of Chong Wei Zi, toxic reactions may appear.
We strongly encourage you to consult your healthcare provider before deciding to add Chong Wei Zi to your healthcare routine!
Here is a summary for Chong Wei Zi:
- Herb name (Chinese): 茺蔚子
- Herb name (Pin Yin): chōng wèi zǐ
- Herb name (English): Motherwort Fruit
- Herb name (Botanical): Fructus Leonuri
- Origin of species: Leonurus japonicus Houtt.
- Part(s) of herb used: Fruit
- Geo-specific habitat(s): Many parts in China
- Taste(s) & Properties: Pungent, bitter; Slightly cold; Administrates the Liver and Pericardium Meridians
- Actions: Eases headaches and migraine; Relieves eye discomforts, and menstrual pain; Regulate menstrual cycle by invigorating blood circulation
Liu, X. D., Yan, D. H., Deng, X. M., Zhao, B., Xue, X. Y., Wang, S. M., … & Meng, J. (2018). Quality assessment of crude and processed Leonuri Fructus by chemical and color analysis combined with chemometric method. Chinese Herbal Medicines, 10(4), 388-395. [Accessed on 14th July 2023]
Shang, X., Pan, H., Wang, X., He, H., & Li, M. (2014). Leonurus japonicus Houtt.: ethnopharmacology, phytochemistry and pharmacology of an important traditional Chinese medicine. Journal of Ethnopharmacology, 152(1), 14-32.[Accessed on 14th July 2023]
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