- Here it is classified as an herb that 'tonifies the blood and regulates the menses'.
In the Chinese system of medicine blood is seen as the physical manifestation of a woman's essence
- In other words a woman's blood reflects her basic constitutional strength and the seat of this strength is the womb
- The womb is seen as the major store of a woman's blood essence
- It therefore comes as no surprise to the Chinese that menstrual or gynaecological illness of any kind is often accompanied by anxiety, depression, disturbed sleep patterns etc.
After having a baby a woman is particularly prone to deficiency in her 'blood and essence'
- Essence is a term that refers to the basic constitutional strength of a person
- This of course is because she has donated a large chunk of her essence and constitutional energy to the growing baby
- The stronger the blood therefore, the stronger the essence is and this reflects in a vital, healthy and robust constitution with the essence being the foundation of a woman's reproductive capacity and sex drive
- Any disturbance of the normal and regular menstrual blood flow or any disease of the womb could lead to depletion of a woman's essence with potentially disastrous consequences for her basic constitution
- I wonder just how many mothers have crashed after having a baby and suffered hair loss, lack of sex drive and depression.
Another important feature of the essence is that it is depleted by overwork, poor diet, stress etc
- The Chinese view menstrual disturbance very seriously
- Although it may appear quaint to our modern, scientific minds, it is interesting to look at the traditional Chinese medical system where this herb has been used for millennia
- Women in these circumstances need to tonify their blood with Chinese Angelica to maintain their essence.
- Any herb that replenished and restored the essence like Chinese Angelica was highly prized.
The Chinese system of medicine states that healthy blood and essence is required for optimum development and functioning of the nervous system and brain
- Feeding the baby again draws on the mother's basic constitutional reserves
Most of us are familiar with the use of Angelica as a confection and a flavouring agent. This plant is the European Angelica, or to give its correct name, Angelica archangelica. We may not be so familiar with its long medical tradition; European Angelica is used to combat flatulence and digestive upsets and is also found in cough remedies; American Angelica (Angelica atropurpureum) is used similarly. Chinese Angelica however, has by far the richest and most interesting history. In China it has been used for centuries as a powerful female restorative. The Chinese call this herb Dong Quai, which literally translated means 'state of return'. It certainly can return women to a state of optimum health and vitality.
Swiss Herbal Remedies
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