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: The donkey skin is soaked in water to soften it and the hair are removed. The skin is then chopped into small pieces, put in boiling water and the gelatin is separated from the skin. The gelatin is boiled further and then left to cool down and ultimately dry into solidified pieces.
Dosage: 3 - 15 grams
Main actions according to TCM*: Tonifies and nourishes Blood. Stops bleeding. Moistens and lubricates Yin.
Primary conditions or symptoms for which donkey-hide gelatin may be prescribed by TCM doctors*: Dizziness Pale face Palpitations Bloody sputum Blood in stools Abnormal uterine bleeding Insomnia Irritability Anemia Dry cough Hemoptysis Hematemesis Hematuria Excessive menstrual discharge
Contraindications*: Not for External conditions or conditions associated with Dampness caused by Spleen Deficiency.
Source date: the Qing dynasty
Number of ingredients: 10 herbs
Formula key actions: Nourishes Yin. Nourishes Blood. Calms the Liver. Extinguishes Wind.
E Jiao is a king ingredient in E Jiao Ji Zi Huang Tang. Like the name indicates, it means it has more power than other ingredients in the formula.
Source date: 220 AD
Number of ingredients: 12 herbs
Formula key actions: Warms the Uterus and vessels. Nourishes Blood. Dispels Cold. Dispels Blood Stagnation.
In Wen Jing Tang, E Jiao nourishes the Blood, tonifies the Yin, and regulates the Liver. In this formula, together with Dwarf lilyturf root, they focus on nourishing the Yin, moistening Dryness, and clearing Heat from Deficiency.
In Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), donkey-hide gelatin are plants that belong 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 donkey-hide gelatin are plants that are Neutral in nature. This means that donkey-hide gelatin typically don't affect the balance in your body. Balance between Yin and Yang is a key health concept in TCM. Eating too many "Hot" (Yang) ingredients can lead to an imbalance whereby one has a Yang Excess. The inverse is true as well: too many "Cold" (Yin) ingredients can lead to a Yin Excess. The Neutral nature of donkey-hide gelatin means that you don't have to worry about that!
Donkey-hide gelatin also taste Sweet. 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. Sweet ingredients like donkey-hide gelatin tend to slow down acute reactions and detoxify the body. They also have a tonic effect because they replenish Qi and Blood.
The tastes of ingredients in TCM also determine what Organs and Meridians they target. As such donkey-hide gelatin are thought to target the Kidney, the Liver and the Lung. According to TCM, the Kidneys do not only regulate the urinary system but also play a key role in the reproductive system and the growth and aging process of the body. The Liver on the other hand is often referred as the body's "general" because it is in charge of regulating the movements of Qi and the Body Fluids. It also takes a leading role in balancing our emotions. In addition to performing respiration, the Lungs are thought in TCM to be a key part of the production chain for Qi and the Body Fluids that nourish the body.