English: Diverse wormwood herbs

Chinese: 刘寄奴

Parts used: Whole plant

TCM category: Herbs that invigorate the Blood

TCM nature: Warm

TCM taste(s): Bitter

Organ affinity: Spleen Heart

Scientific name: Artemisiae anomalae herba

Other names: Anomalous artemisia, Anomala, Artemisia

Use of Liu Ji Nu (diverse wormwood herbs) in TCM

Please note that you should never self-prescribe TCM ingredients. A TCM ingredient is almost never eaten on its own but as part of a formula containing several ingredients that act together. Please consult a professional TCM practitioner, they will be best able to guide you.

Preparation: During the flowering period in August, pull up the plant along with its roots, dry it in the sun, remove the roots and soil, then bundle it up.

Dosage: 3-9g

Main actions according to TCM*: Dispels Blood Stagnation, unblocks menstruation and alleviates pain. Reduces Food Stagnation and transforms food accumulations. Used topically as a powder for contusion, burns and bleeding wounds.

Primary conditions or symptoms for which Liu Ji Nu may be prescribed by TCM doctors*: Amenorrhea Postpartum abdominal pain Fractures Contusions Sprains Abdominal pain due to food stagnation Burns Bleeding wounds Swelling pain Fracture pain Trauma pain Dysmenorrhea

Contraindications*: This product should not be used during pregnancy and excessive use may lead to vomiting and diarrhea. It should only be used for Excess disorders.

Key TCM concepts behind Liu Ji Nu's properties

In Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), Liu Ji Nu belongs to the 'Herbs that invigorate the Blood' category. Like the name indicates these herbs tend to stimulate the Blood flow. In TCM they're used to help the circulation of Blood in cardiovascular conditions or menstrual irregularities as well as to treat acute pains caused by Blood Stagnation. They can also be used to treat Blood Stagnation when it causes certain tumors, cysts and hardened clots.

Furthermore Liu Ji Nu is Warm in nature. This means that Liu Ji Nu tends to help people who have too much 'Cold' in their body, although with less effect than a plant that would be Hot in nature. Balance between Yin and Yang is a key health concept in TCM. Those who have too much Cold in their body are said to either have a Yin Excess (because Yin is Cold in nature) or a Yang Deficiency (Yang is Hot in Nature). Depending on your condition Liu Ji Nu can help restore a harmonious balance between Yin and Yang.

Liu Ji Nu also tastes Bitter. The so-called 'Five Phases' theory in Chinese Medicine states that the taste of TCM ingredients is a key determinant of their action in the body. Bitter ingredients like Liu Ji Nu tends to have a cleansing action on the body by clearing Heat, drying Dampness and promoting elimination via urination or bowel movements.

The tastes of ingredients in TCM also determine what Organs and Meridians they target. As such Liu Ji Nu is thought to target the Spleen and the Heart. In TCM the Spleen assists with digestion, Blood coagulation and Fluids metabolism in the body. In addition to regulating Blood flow, the Heart is believed to be the store of the 'Mind' which basically refers to someone's vitality.