Donkey-hide gelatin (E Jiao) Chicken egg yolks (Ji Zi Huang) Unprepared Rehmannia (Di Huang) White peony roots (Bai Shao) Liquorice (Gan Cao) Gambir stems and thorns (Gou Teng) Abalone shells (Shi Jue Ming) Oyster shells (Mu Li Ke)

E Jiao Ji Zi Huang Tang

Chinese: 阿胶鸡子黄汤

Pinyin: Ē Jiāo Jī Zi Huáng Tāng

Other names: Donkey-Hide Gelatin and Egg Yolk Decoction

Number of ingredients: 10 herbs

Formula category: Formulas that pacify and extinguish Internal Wind

Conditions for which it may be prescribed: MeningitisEncephalitis

  1. Nourishes Yin
  2. Nourishes Blood
  3. Calms the Liver
  4. Extinguishes Wind

Source date: the Qing dynasty

Source book: Popular Guide to the Discussion of Cold Damage

E Jiao Ji Zi Huang Tang is a 10-ingredient Chinese Medicine formula with Donkey-Hide Gelatin (E Jiao) and Chicken Egg Yolks (Ji Zi Huang) as principal ingredients.

Invented in the Qing dynasty, it belongs to the category of formulas that pacify and extinguish Internal Wind. Its main actions are: 1) nourishes Yin and 2) nourishes Blood.

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.

In this case E Jiao Ji Zi Huang Tang is used by TCM practitioners to fight patterns like Liver Wind agitating Internally due to Liver Blood Deficiency. From a Western Medicine standpoint, such patterns can give rise to a range of conditions such as encephalitis or meningitis for instance.

On this page, after a detailed description of each of the ten ingredients in E Jiao Ji Zi Huang Tang, we review the patterns and conditions that E Jiao Ji Zi Huang Tang helps treat.

The ten ingredients in E Jiao Ji Zi Huang Tang

E Jiao is a king ingredient in E Jiao Ji Zi Huang Tang. Like the name indicates, it means it has more power than other ingredients in the formula.

1. Donkey-Hide Gelatin (E Jiao)

Part used: Solid glue prepared from the dried or fresh skin of donkeys

Nature: Neutral

Taste(s): Sweet

Meridian affinity: KidneyLiverLung

Category: Herbs that invigorate the Blood

E Jiao is heavy and thick. It nourishes the Yin and Blood, expels Wind, sedates the Yang, augments the Yin Body Fluids, and moistens the sinews .

Learn more about Donkey-Hide Gelatin (E Jiao)

Ji Zi Huang is a king ingredient in E Jiao Ji Zi Huang Tang. Like the name indicates, it means it has more power than other ingredients in the formula.

2. Chicken Egg Yolks (Ji Zi Huang)

Part used: The egg yolk, raw or cooked

Nature: Neutral

Taste(s): Sweet

Meridian affinity: HeartKidney

Category: Tonic herbs for Yin Deficiency

Ji Zi Huang has a thick flavor. Like E Jiao (the other king ingredient here) it nourishes the Yin and Blood, expels Wind and sedates the Yang.

Learn more about Chicken Egg Yolks (Ji Zi Huang)

Di Huang is a deputy ingredient in E Jiao Ji Zi Huang Tang. This means it helps the king ingredient(s) treat the main pattern or it serves to treat a coexisting pattern.

3. Unprepared Rehmannia (Di Huang)

Part used: Prepared dried root tuber

Nature: Cold

Taste(s): Sweet

Meridian affinity: HeartKidneyLiver

Category: Herbs that cool the Blood

In general Di Huang's main actions are as follows: "Expels Heat by Cooling Blood. Tonifies Yin by promoting Fluid production. Soothes the Heart by calming Blazing Fire. Cools and nourishes."

In the context of E Jiao Ji Zi Huang Tang, it is used because it calms the Liver to extinguish Wind.

Learn more about Unprepared Rehmannia (Di Huang)

Bai Shao is a deputy ingredient in E Jiao Ji Zi Huang Tang. This means it helps the king ingredient(s) treat the main pattern or it serves to treat a coexisting pattern.

4. White Peony Roots (Bai Shao)

Part used: Dried root

Nature: Neutral

Taste(s): BitterSour

Meridian affinity: SpleenLiver

Category: Tonic herbs for Blood Deficiency

Bai Shao calms the Liver to extinguish Wind. The combination of Bai Shao and Gan Cao (Liquorice) is very effective in treating painful spasms.

Learn more about White Peony Roots (Bai Shao)

Gan Cao is a deputy ingredient in E Jiao Ji Zi Huang Tang. This means it helps the king ingredient(s) treat the main pattern or it serves to treat a coexisting pattern.

5. Liquorice (Gan Cao)

Part used: Dried root and rhizome

Nature: Neutral

Taste(s): Sweet

Meridian affinity: SpleenStomachHeartLung

Category: Tonic herbs for Qi Deficiency

Gan Cao calms the Liver to extinguish Wind. The combination Gan Cao with Bai Shao (White Peony Roots) and is very effective in treating painful spasms.

Learn more about Liquorice (Gan Cao)

Gou Teng is an assistant ingredient in E Jiao Ji Zi Huang Tang. This means that it either serves to reinforces the effect of other ingredients or it moderates their toxicity.

6. Gambir Stems And Thorns (Gou Teng)

Part used: Dried stems and thorns from the branches

Nature: Cool

Taste(s): Sweet

Meridian affinity: LiverPericardium

Category: Herbs that pacify Internal Liver Wind and stop Tremors

In general Gou Teng's main actions are as follows: "Calms Liver Wind and relieves spasms. Clears Liver Heat and sedates Liver Yang."

In the context of E Jiao Ji Zi Huang Tang, it is used because it sedates the rising Yang and extinguishes Wind.

Learn more about Gambir Stems And Thorns (Gou Teng)

Shi Jue Ming is an assistant ingredient in E Jiao Ji Zi Huang Tang. This means that it either serves to reinforces the effect of other ingredients or it moderates their toxicity.

7. Abalone Shells (Shi Jue Ming)

Part used: Shell

Nature: Cold

Taste(s): Salty

Meridian affinity: KidneyLiverLung

Category: Herbs that pacify Internal Liver Wind and stop Tremors

In general Shi Jue Ming's main actions are as follows: "Clears Heat and calms ascending Liver Yang. Clears Liver Heat that is obstructing the vision."

In the context of E Jiao Ji Zi Huang Tang, it is used because it sedates the rising Yang and extinguishes Wind.

Learn more about Abalone Shells (Shi Jue Ming)

Mu Li ke is an assistant ingredient in E Jiao Ji Zi Huang Tang. This means that it either serves to reinforces the effect of other ingredients or it moderates their toxicity.

8. 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 E Jiao Ji Zi Huang Tang, it is used because it sedates the rising Yang and extinguishes Wind.

Learn more about Oyster Shells (Mu Li ke)

Fu Shen is an assistant ingredient in E Jiao Ji Zi Huang Tang. This means that it either serves to reinforces the effect of other ingredients or it moderates their toxicity.

9. Host-Wood Poria (Fu Shen)

Part used: The part of the mushroom that is attached to the host-wood, dried

Nature: Neutral

Taste(s): Sweet

Meridian affinity: SpleenHeart

Category: Herbs that nourish the Heart and calm the Spirit

In general Fu Shen's main actions are as follows: "Calms the Mind (Shen) and promote urination."

In the context of E Jiao Ji Zi Huang Tang, it is used because it calms the Liver and the Mind.

Learn more about Host-Wood Poria (Fu Shen)

Luo Shi Teng is an envoy ingredient in E Jiao Ji Zi Huang Tang. This means that it directs the formula towards certain area of the body and/or harmonizes the actions of other ingredients.

10. Star Jasmine Stems (Luo Shi Teng)

Part used: Dried lianoid stem

Nature: Cool

Taste(s): Bitter

Meridian affinity: HeartKidneyLiver

Category: Herbs that dispel Wind and Dampness

In general Luo Shi Teng's main actions are as follows: "Dispel Wind-Damp and removes obstruction from the Channels. Remove Blood-Heat and reduces swelling."

In the context of E Jiao Ji Zi Huang Tang, it is used because it focuses the actions of the other ingredients on the Collaterals and sinews.

Learn more about Star Jasmine Stems (Luo Shi Teng)

E Jiao Ji Zi Huang Tang is used to treat Liver Wind agitating Internally due to Liver Blood Deficiency

It's important to remember that herbal formulas are meant to treat patterns, not "diseases" as understood in Western Medicine. According to Chinese Medicine patterns, which are disruptions to the body as a system, are the underlying root cause for diseases and conditions.

As such E Jiao Ji Zi Huang Tang is mostly used to treat the pattern "Liver Wind agitating Internally due to Liver Blood Deficiency" which we describe below.

But before we delve into Liver Wind agitating Internally due to Liver Blood Deficiency here is an overview of the Western conditions it is commonly associated with:

Encephalitis Meningitis

Again it wouldn't be correct to say "E Jiao Ji Zi Huang Tang treats encephalitis" for instance. Rather, E Jiao Ji Zi Huang Tang is used to treat Liver Wind agitating Internally due to Liver Blood Deficiency, which is sometimes the root cause behind encephalitis.

Now let's look at Liver Wind agitating Internally due to Liver Blood Deficiency, a pattern that TCM practitioners commonly treat with E Jiao Ji Zi Huang Tang.

The Liver is a so-called "Zang" Organ. Learn more about the Liver in Chinese Medicine

Liver Wind agitating Internally due to Liver Blood Deficiency

E Jiao Ji Zi Huang Tang is sometimes prescribed by TCM practitioners to treat Liver Wind agitating Internally due to Liver Blood Deficiency. This pattern leads to symptoms such as tremor, numbness in the limbs, dizziness and headaches. Patients with Liver Wind agitating Internally due to Liver Blood Deficiency typically exhibit wiry (Xian) or fine (Xi) pulses as well as a pale tongue.

If there is Liver Blood Deficiency, especially if the condition lasts a long time without being treated, the Blood vessels become 'empty' and the space is taken over by Internal Wind. Like an empty building will often get a lot of wind in its corridors, the concept here is the same.

This kind of... read more about Liver Wind agitating Internally due to Liver Blood Deficiency

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