English: Lotus stamens

Chinese: 莲须

Parts used: Dried stamens

TCM category: Herbs that stabilize and bind

TCM nature: Neutral

TCM taste(s): Sweet

Organ affinity: Heart Kidney

Scientific name: Nelumbo nucifera

Use of Lian Xu (lotus stamens ) 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: 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 Lian Xu may be prescribed by TCM doctors*: Vaginal discharge Leukorrhea Spermatorrhea Urinary incontinence

Common TCM formulas in which Lian Xu is used*

Jin Suo Gu Jing Wan

Source date: 1682 AD

Number of ingredients: 6 herbs

Formula key actions: Stabilizes the Kidneys. Binds up the semen.

Conditions targeted*: Sexual dysfunctionChyluria and others

Lian Xu is a deputy ingredient in Jin Suo Gu Jing Wan. This means it helps the king ingredient(s) treat the main pattern or it serves to treat a coexisting pattern.

Read more about Jin Suo Gu Jing Wan

Key TCM concepts behind Lian Xu's properties

In Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), Lian Xu belongs 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 Lian Xu is Neutral in nature. This means that Lian Xu typically doesn'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 Lian Xu means that you don't have to worry about that!

Lian Xu also tastes 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 Lian Xu tends 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 Lian Xu is 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 'Mind' 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.