Monday, December 8, 2014

Natural Anti-virals: A Traditional Chinese Medicine Approach

By Mary Oleksowicz, MSTOM , L.Ac.

As we discussed last time , there has been an announcement that the flu vaccine this year may not be effective , In addition to  healthy habits such as hand washing , it is time for use to look to natural anti-virals. Luckily , Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), has a variety of herbal combinations that have natural antiviral qualities.

 GAN MAO JIE DU WAN  is one of the most common cold and flu remedies. It has been estimated that 75% of this formula is composed of strong anti-viral agents. Two of these herbs are gang mei gen (Radix Ilicis Asprellae) and san cha ku (Radix-Ramus Evodiae Leptae). Interestingly enough, gang me gen is the root of a type of holly. Holly is a plant associated with many winter holiday traditions.
Ilex plant commonly used to treat viral conditions.

YIN QIAO SAN- began as a pediatric formula for colds and flu.  It was commonly used for measles and chicken pox outbreaks. It is recommended for  traditional signs and symptoms associated with a phenomenon known as wind- heat . These would include , sore throat , slight fever and stuffy nose. It can be used in conjunction with the aforementioned Gan Mao Ling. The two most interesting ingredients in this formula are the use of honeysuckle flower and forsythia  fruit. The formula can be used a soothing tea or is available in tablet form.

Forsythia in bloom.

As with any supplementation use , please consult your physician or certified herbalist before beginning usage.


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