Lotus stamens

Chinese: 莲须

Pinyin: Lián Xū

Parts used: Dried stamens

TCM category: Herbs that stabilize and bind

TCM nature: Neutral

TCM taste(s): Sweet

Meridian affinity: HeartKidney

Scientific name: Nelumbo nucifera

Use of lotus stamens (Lian Xu) 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: Collect the stamens during clear summer days when the lotus is blooming. Dry them under the shade.

Dosage: 3 - 4.5 grams

Main actions according to TCM*: Strengthens the kidney and relieves spermatorrhea. Reduces vaginal discharge and reduces urination.

Primary conditions or symptoms for which lotus stamens may be prescribed by TCM doctors*: Vaginal discharge Leukorrhea Spermatorrhea Urinary incontinence

Common TCM formulas in which lotus stamens are used*:

Key TCM concepts behind lotus stamens (Lian Xu)'s properties

In Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), lotus stamens are plants that belong to the 'Herbs that stabilize and bind' category. This category of herbs is used for treating abnormal discharges and displacement of organs. This includes conditions such as diarrhea, discharges from the vagina, penis or rectum as well as prolapse of the uterus or rectum. It is important to note that herbs in this category only treat symptoms, so one should also use herbs to treat the underlying Deficiency.

Furthermore lotus stamens are plants that are Neutral in nature. This means that lotus stamens 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 lotus stamens means that you don't have to worry about that!

Lotus stamens also taste 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. Sweet ingredients like lotus stamens 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 lotus stamens are thought to target the Heart and the Kidney. In addition to regulating blood flow, in TCM the Heart is believed to be the store of the "spirit" which basically refers to someone's vitality. 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.