Bupleurum roots (Chai Hu) Baikal skullcap roots (Huang Qin) Cinnamon twigs (Gui Zhi) Rhubarb (Da Huang) Crow-dipper rhizomes (Ban Xia) Ginseng (Ren Shen) Poria-cocos mushrooms (Fu Ling) Dragon bones (Long Gu)

Chinese: 柴胡加龙骨牡蛎汤

Pinyin: Chái Hú Jiā Lóng Gǔ Mǔ Lì Tāng

Other names: Bupleurum plus Dragon Bone and Oyster Shell Decoction

Number of ingredients: 12 herbs

Formula category: Formulas that harmonize lesser Yang-warp disorders

Conditions for which it may be prescribed: AnxietyNeurosisEpilepsy and twelve other conditions

  1. Unblocks the three Yang warps
  2. Sedates and calms the Spirit

Contraindications: Even though this formula comprises only a few torrifying herbs, its emphasis is... Even though this formula comprises only a few torrifying herbs, its emphasis is clearly on Excess. It should not be used to treat Deficient symptoms. If the formula is prescribed incorrectly, symptoms such as anxiety, sleeplessness, irritability, or hypertension will almost always worsen. In these instances, it is critical to transition to a different formula as soon as possible. see more

Source date: 220 AD

Source book: Discussion of Cold Damage

Chai Hu Jia Long Gu Mu Li Tang is a 12-ingredient Chinese Medicine formula with Bupleurum Roots (Chai Hu), Baikal Skullcap Roots (Huang Qin), Cinnamon Twigs (Gui Zhi) and Rhubarb (Da Huang) as principal ingredients.

Invented in 220 AD, it belongs to the category of formulas that harmonize lesser Yang-warp disorders. Its main actions are: 1) unblocks the three Yang warps and 2) sedates and calms the Spirit.

In Chinese Medicine health conditions are thought to arise due to "disharmonies" in the body as a system. These disharmonies are called "patterns" and the very purpose of herbal formulas is to fight them in order to restore the body's harmony.

From a Western Medicine standpoint, such patterns can give rise to a range of conditions such as neurosis, depression or schizophrenia for instance.

On this page, after a detailed description of each of the twelve ingredients in Chai Hu Jia Long Gu Mu Li Tang, we review the patterns and conditions that Chai Hu Jia Long Gu Mu Li Tang helps treat.

The twelve ingredients in Chai Hu Jia Long Gu Mu Li Tang

Chai Hu is a king ingredient in Chai Hu Jia Long Gu Mu Li Tang. Like the name indicates, it means it has more power than other ingredients in the formula.

1. Bupleurum Roots (Chai Hu)

Part used: Dried root and rhizome

Nature: Cool

Taste(s): Bitter

Meridian affinity: GallbladderLiver

Category: Cool/Acrid herbs that release the Exterior

Chai Hu resolves Lesser Yang disorders, and releases constraint at this level along with Baikal skullcap root.

Learn more about Bupleurum Roots (Chai Hu)

Huang Qin is a king ingredient in Chai Hu Jia Long Gu Mu Li Tang. Like the name indicates, it means it has more power than other ingredients in the formula.

2. Baikal Skullcap Roots (Huang Qin)

Part used: Dried root

Nature: Cold

Taste(s): Bitter

Meridian affinity: GallbladderHeartLarge intestineLungSmall intestineSpleen

Category: Herbs that clear Heat and dry Dampness

In general Huang Qin's main actions are as follows: "Expels Heat and Dampness. Clears Upper Burner Heat, especially of the Lung. Clears Heat and stops reckless movement of Blood. Clears pathogenic Heat which is upsetting the fetus. Cools the Liver, reducing Liver Yang rising syndrome."

In the context of Chai Hu Jia Long Gu Mu Li Tang, it is used because it resolves Lesser Yang disorders, and releases constraint at this level along with Bupleurum root.

Learn more about Baikal Skullcap Roots (Huang Qin)

Gui Zhi is a king ingredient in Chai Hu Jia Long Gu Mu Li Tang. Like the name indicates, it means it has more power than other ingredients in the formula.

3. Cinnamon Twigs (Gui Zhi)

Part used: Dried young branches

Nature: Warm

Taste(s): PungentSweet

Meridian affinity: HeartLungSpleen

Category: Warm/Acrid herbs that release the Exterior

Gui Zhi is a greater Yang herb helps in resolving the problems in the superficial levels and for promoting the flow of Yang Qi for relieving the heaviness sensation in the body.

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Da Huang is a king ingredient in Chai Hu Jia Long Gu Mu Li Tang. Like the name indicates, it means it has more power than other ingredients in the formula.

4. Rhubarb (Da Huang)

Part used: Dried root and rhizome

Nature: Cold

Taste(s): Bitter

Meridian affinity: SpleenStomachLarge intestineLiverPericardium

Category: Purgative herbs that drain downward

Da Huang resolves Lesser Yang disorders and releases constraint at this level. Rhubarb also addresses delirious speech and Yang brightness-warp symptoms, by clearing Heat and stools Stagnation from the Intestines.

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Ban Xia is an assistant ingredient in Chai Hu Jia Long Gu Mu Li Tang. This means that it either serves to reinforces the effect of other ingredients or it moderates their toxicity.

5. Crow-Dipper Rhizomes (Ban Xia)

Part used: Dried rhizome and tuber

Nature: Warm

Taste(s): Pungent

Meridian affinity: LungSpleenStomach

Category: Warm herbs that transform Phlegm and stop Cough

Ban Xia causes the Qi to descend. It works with Poria-cocos mushrooms for transforming the disturbances of the Body Fluids and for openening up the diaphragm. It also assists Bupleurum root and Baikal skullcap root in resolving the Lesser Yang warp aspects of this disorder.

Learn more about Crow-Dipper Rhizomes (Ban Xia)

Ren Shen is an assistant ingredient in Chai Hu Jia Long Gu Mu Li Tang. This means that it either serves to reinforces the effect of other ingredients or it moderates their toxicity.

6. Ginseng (Ren Shen)

Part used: Dried root

Nature: Warm

Taste(s): BitterSweet

Meridian affinity: HeartLungSpleen

Category: Tonic herbs for Qi Deficiency

Ren Shen works with and Poria cocos mushroom to strengthen the Qi of the Middle Burner, and makes esure that it is not further damaged by the treatment. They cause a mild calming effect.

Learn more about Ginseng (Ren Shen)

Fu Ling is an assistant ingredient in Chai Hu Jia Long Gu Mu Li Tang. This means that it either serves to reinforces the effect of other ingredients or it moderates their toxicity.

7. Poria-Cocos Mushrooms (Fu Ling)

Part used: Dried sclerotium

Nature: Neutral

Taste(s): Sweet

Meridian affinity: HeartKidneyLungSpleen

Category: Herbs that drain Dampness

Fu Ling works with and Poria cocos mushroom to strengthen the Qi of the Middle Burner, and makes esure that it is not further damaged by the treatment. They cause a mild calming effect. It also increases and promotes urination.

Learn more about Poria-Cocos Mushrooms (Fu Ling)

Long Gu is an assistant ingredient in Chai Hu Jia Long Gu Mu Li Tang. This means that it either serves to reinforces the effect of other ingredients or it moderates their toxicity.

8. Dragon Bones (Long Gu)

Part used: The fossilized bone or vertebrae

Nature: Neutral

Taste(s): Sweet

Meridian affinity: HeartKidneyLiver

Category: Herbs that anchor and calm the Spirit

In general Long Gu's main actions are as follows: "Calms the spirit. Anchors ascendant Liver Yang. Stops leakage of Bodily Fluids."

In the context of Chai Hu Jia Long Gu Mu Li Tang, it is used because it is a mineral substance that weighs down and calms the floating spirit.

Learn more about Dragon Bones (Long Gu)

Mu Li ke is an assistant ingredient in Chai Hu Jia Long Gu Mu Li Tang. This means that it either serves to reinforces the effect of other ingredients or it moderates their toxicity.

9. Oyster Shells (Mu Li ke)

In general Mu Li ke's main actions are as follows: "Calms and anchors the spirit. Moistens Dryness. Softens and removes lumps. Nourish the Yin and subdues the overflowing of the Yang,"

In the context of Chai Hu Jia Long Gu Mu Li Tang, it is used because it is a mineral substance that weighs down and calms the floating spirit.

Learn more about Oyster Shells (Mu Li ke)

Qian Dan is an assistant ingredient in Chai Hu Jia Long Gu Mu Li Tang. This means that it either serves to reinforces the effect of other ingredients or it moderates their toxicity.

10. Minium (Qian Dan)

Part used: The mineral

Nature: Cool

Taste(s): Pungent

Meridian affinity: SpleenHeartLung

Category: Herbs for external application

In general Qian Dan's main actions are as follows: "Apply topically as a paste to expel Toxins, heal injuries, stop itching, expel pus. Moves Phlegm downwards and suppresses spasms. "

In the context of Chai Hu Jia Long Gu Mu Li Tang, it is used because it is a mineral substance that weighs down and calms the floating spirit.

Learn more about Minium (Qian Dan)

Sheng Jiang is an envoy ingredient in Chai Hu Jia Long Gu Mu Li Tang. This means that it directs the formula towards certain area of the body and/or harmonizes the actions of other ingredients.

11. Fresh Ginger (Sheng Jiang)

Part used: Fresh root

Nature: Warm

Taste(s): Pungent

Meridian affinity: LungSpleenStomach

Category: Warm/Acrid herbs that release the Exterior

Sheng Jiang works with Jujube date to regulate the relationship between the Protective Qi in the Exterior and the Nutritive Qi in the Interior. This helps in focusing the actions of the other ingredients on these critical aspects of the body.

Learn more about Fresh Ginger (Sheng Jiang)

Da Zao is an envoy ingredient in Chai Hu Jia Long Gu Mu Li Tang. This means that it directs the formula towards certain area of the body and/or harmonizes the actions of other ingredients.

12. Jujube Dates (Da Zao)

Part used: Dried ripe fruit

Nature: Warm

Taste(s): Sweet

Meridian affinity: SpleenStomach

Category: Tonic herbs for Qi Deficiency

Da Zao works with Jujube date to regulate the relationship between the Protective Qi in the Exterior and the Nutritive Qi in the Interior. This helps in focusing the actions of the other ingredients on these critical aspects of the body.

Learn more about Jujube Dates (Da Zao)

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