Gold coin herb

Chinese: 金钱草

Pinyin: Jīn Qián Cǎo

Parts used: Dried aerial parts

TCM category: Herbs that drain Dampness

TCM nature: Cool

TCM taste(s): SaltySweet

Meridian affinity: BladderGallbladderKidneyLiver

Scientific name: Lysimachia christinae

Other names: Gold Coin Grass, Gold money herb or Ground Ivy

Use of gold coin herb (Jin Qian Cao) 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 practitionner, they will be best able to guide you.

Preparation: Remove impurities, wash, soak in water, cut and dry.

Dosage: 10 - 30 grams

Main actions according to TCM*: Drains damp-heat. Promotes urination. Cools heat and disperses swellings. Cools blood and dispels toxicity.

Primary conditions or symptoms for which gold coin herb may be prescribed by TCM doctors*: Urinary tract infection Jaundice Carbuncles Sores Snake bites bladder stones Urinary stones Ulcers Eczema Burns Loss of appetite Fatigue Abdominal pain

Contraindications*: This substance should not be used when there are no signs of a Damp-Heat condition and should be avoided during pregnancy.

Common TCM formulas in which gold coin herb are used*:

Key TCM concepts behind gold coin herb (Jin Qian Cao)'s properties

In Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), gold coin herb are plants that belong to the 'Herbs that drain Dampness' category. These herbs are typically diuretics, meaning that they promotes the increased production of urine in order to remove Damp that has accumulated in the body. According to TCM Damp accumulates first in the lower limbs, causing edema and impaired movement. From there, if unchecked, it can move upward and impair digestion and eventually the respiratory system.

Furthermore gold coin herb are plants that are Cool in nature. This means that gold coin herb tend to help people who have too much "heat" in their body, although with less effect than a plant that would be Cold in nature. Balance between Yin and Yang is a key health concept in TCM. Those who have too much heat in their body are said to either have a Yang excess (because Yang is Hot in nature) or a Yin deficiency (Yin is Cold in Nature). Depending on your condition gold coin herb can help restore a harmonious balance between Yin and Yang.

Gold coin herb also taste Salty and Sweet. The so-called "five elements" theory in Chinese Medicine states that the taste of TCM ingredients is a key determinant of their action in the body. Salty ingredients like gold coin herb tend to have a draining effect in the body because they clear accumulations, remove phlegm and soften hard lumps. On the other hand Sweet ingredients 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 gold coin herb are thought to target the Bladder, the Gallbladder, the Kidney and the Liver. In TCM the impure water collected by the Kidneys that cannot be used by the body is sent to the Bladder for storage and excretion as urine. Similar to modern medicine, in TCM the Gall Bladder stores and releases bile produced by the Liver. It also controls the emotion of decisiveness. 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 is often referred as the body's "general" because it is in charge of regulating the movements of Qi and body fluids. It also takes a leading role in balancing our emotions.

Research on gold coin herb (Jin Qian Cao)

The aqueous extract of Lysimachia christinae possesses potent hypuricemic effects on models of hyperuricemia in mice pretreated with oxonate.1

Sources:

1. Wang HD, Ge F, Guo YS, Kong LD. [Effects of aqueous extract in herba of Lysimachia christinae on hyperuricemia in mice]. Zhongguo Zhong Yao Za Zhi. 2002 Dec;27(12) 939-41, 944. PMID: 12776538.