Dong Quai for Women's Health
Dong Quai (Angleica sinensis), also called Tang Kuei or the Supreme Woman's Root, is a native of China. Dong Quai is a member of the carrot family, it is a beautiful plant, which branches into rich green serrated leaves, and blossoms into umbrella like clusters of tiny white flowers. Its root is brown and fleshy and has a flavour similar to celery.
For more than two thousand years it has been a favourite in Chinese blends and for the same length of time has held a reputation as the supreme female tonic. The Chinese value Dong Quai as a vital energy tonic, they believe that its high level nutritional properties boost Chi energy and strengthen the body's vital force. It is also held to disperse stagnated body fluid and rebalance the harmony of the whole system. This herb has a whole range of health-enriching properties. The nutritional and healing constituents of Dong Quai include; Vitamins A, B3, B12, B-complex, C, E, Calcium, iron, zinc, sodium, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium, selenium, silicon, tannins, resin, and volatile oil.
The herb's healing properties include:
Digestion - Dong Quai eases bloating, soothes stomach cramps and calms the entire digestive tract.
Disease resistance - Dong Quai has antiviral and antifungal properties and is therefore excellent at fighting bacterial infection. It contains selenium, which helps to build the body's natural barrier to disease and contains the natural antioxidant vitamin E, which enhances selenium absorption, as well as purifying the system.
Heart and blood - Dong Quai is the most respected heart tonic in the east because it relieves stagnating effects, which can cause some types of blood clot. It increases circulation, improves coronary function and stimulates the production of red blood cells. It is also known to regulate minor heart irregularities, and relieves stress on the heart by relaxing its muscle tissue.
Liver - Dong Quai helps to clear toxins from the liver, and promote healthy functioning.
Muscles - Dong Quai has qualities which help restore and relax muscle and joints. It is anti-rheumatic, and the dried herb can be made into a poultice and used externally as a topical compress on the site of an ache. It can penetrate the tissue to reduce inflammation, remove toxins, ease aches and also stimulates circulation to prevent pressure at the site of pain.
Nervous tension - Dong Quai carries nutrients including magnesium, B12 and vitamin E, which all help to regulate the nervous system and ease pressures placed upon it.
PMS - The herb contains zinc and calcium, which are often deficient in women suffering from PMS. It also helps to regulate hormone balance.
Supreme woman's tonic. Dong Quai is known to be one of the soundest herbs for the treatment of menopausal symptoms. It stabilizes oestrogen/progesterone production without using oestrogenic properties. It strengthens the heart and enhances bone marrow properties, which helps increase defence against osteoporosis. It also contains a good amount of vitamin E, which helps reduce the effects of ageing.
Caution - Dong Quai should be avoided by anyone suffering from diabetes.