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: Collect the female bugs, boil in hot water and then dry.
Dosage: 3-12g in decoction 1-1.5g in powder
Main actions according to TCM*: Breaks and removes Blood Stagnation, invigorates Blood.
Primary conditions or symptoms for which Tu Bie Chong may be prescribed by TCM doctors*: Amenorrhea Swollen tongue Abdominal mass Stasis by traumatic injury Fractures Laceration Contusions Lumbar strain
Contraindications*: Only use when there are pattern of Blood Stagnation. Contraindicated during pregnancy.
Source date: 220 AD
Number of ingredients: 12 herbs
Formula key actions: Breaks up and dispels Blood Stagnation. Generates new Blood .
Tu Bie Chong is a king ingredient in Da Huang Zhe Chong Wan. Like the name indicates, it means it has more power than other ingredients in the formula.
In Da Huang Zhe Chong Wan, Tu Bie Chong attacks and purges the Blood Stagnation, breaking up Blood that has aggregated into fixed abdominal masses.
In Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), Tu Bie Chong 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 Tu Bie Chong is Cold in nature. This means that Tu Bie Chong typically helps people who have too much 'Heat' in their body. 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 Tu Bie Chong can help restore a harmonious balance between Yin and Yang.
Tu Bie Chong also tastes Salty. 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. Salty ingredients like Tu Bie Chong tends to have a draining effect in the body because they clear accumulations, remove Phlegm and soften hard lumps.
The tastes of ingredients in TCM also determine what Organs and Meridians they target. As such Tu Bie Chong is thought to target the Liver. In TCM the Liver 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.