Dong Quai: The New ‘Female Ginseng’

Herbalists describe this plant as female ginseng because it increases the quality of their blood.

Ever heard of Dong Quai? It is a plant native to China, Japan and Korea which has a Latin name-angelica sinensis and is used in Traditional Chinese Medicine for centuries. Many herbalists have claimed it to be a health booster. It helps in building blood health, enhancing circulation and supporting the immune system. However, the main benefits of Dong Quai are in soothing menstrual cramps and relieve symptoms of menopause.

Why is Dong Quai called female ginseng?

Herbalists describe this plant as female ginseng because it increases the quality of their blood. This plant helps in easing menstruation issues such as PMS, menopause and cramps by enhancing the blood quality.

Dong quai contains ligustilide which has been shown to boost nonspecific antispasmodic activity in the uterine muscles. That means it can have a soothing effect on menstrual cramps. A study on Dong Quai found that when this plant is taken in a concentrated form, and twice daily-39%of women reported improvement in their pain and they felt the due to less severe pain, they could avoid taking painkillers. While 54% of women, though felt that pain was severe but still needed to take painkillers to perform day-to-day tasks.

Don Quai treatment in women has shown a reduction in menopause symptoms. Herbalists prescribe it to treat for hot flashes during menopause. It can also help in protecting against osteoporosis that can appear in post-menopausal women because of the drop in oestrogen levels that comes with menopause. Research suggests that dong quai can help in strengthening bones by encouraging bone cells to form bones and treat osteoporosis, which is the weakening of bones.

What are the other benefits of Dong Quai?

Here are the other benefits of Dong Quai:

Improves blood circulation

Many studies have suggested that dong quai may improve blood circulation, because of the way the body absorbs and excretes it. Due to its water and ethanol extracts, dong quai has been found to effectively decrease fat accumulation. This helps in preventing fatty tissues that can increase the risk of type 2 diabetes and heart disease.

Reduces inflammation

Some studies suggest that dong quai has powerful anti-inflammatory properties and can reduce chronic inflammation, including diabetes, heart disease, and cancer. One such study found that levels of various different inflammatory markers were significantly decreased by dong quai extract.

How to take dong quai?

In China, dong quai is traditionally slow-cooked to infuse into soups, broths or tonics. However, the easiest way to consume dong quai is to take it in supplement form. Take dong quai in a capsule form or as directed by a healthcare practitioner.


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