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Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) for Seasonal Allergy Relief

Updated on June 13, 2011

High tree pollen counts are already being reported in areas like Texas as some trees have already started to bloom. Hence allergy sufferers will be looking to seek relief from the allergens that ails them. Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) for Seasonal Allergy Relief is the 3rd hub that addresses seasonal allergy symptoms. The 1stHome Remedies for Seasonal Allergies reveals changes that should be made within ones home to assist in keeping valuable space between the allergy sufferer and the allergens that are causing the symptoms. Home Remedies for Seasonal Allergy Symptoms offers steps that can provide allergy relief from dust, pollen, and other seasonal allergens.

As the East continues to offer the West great alternative medicines for numerous things that ails us, I thought it would be interesting to see what allergy treatments there are for those of us that have a continual bout with seasonal allergies.  For those that may not know traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) is at least 3000 years and encompasses Chinese herbology, nutritional therapy and exercise, massage, and acupuncture.  The foundation of TCM is the concept Qi (pronounced chee) which is the life force or vital energy.  Qi is the force that warms us, promotes functions of the body and keeps our organs and tissues in place, and it protects us from external pathogenic factors. In order words, TCM is the yin and yang idea that relates to an opposite but complementary relationship between events.   Cold/hot and night/day are examples of yin/yang.

Chinese Herbology

I’ve learned there are thousands of herbs involved in the Chinese pharmacopia, consisting of plants, minerals, and animal products. A Chinese herb remedy may consist of 3 to 20 herbs and can come in numerous forms like herbal tinctures, tablets, and capsules. An experienced herbalist in TCM can perform a health assessment of the allergy sufferer and devises a remedy designed specifically for an individual. While watching the videos and doing my research I was reminded of what a pharmacist would do in the West.

Allergy Relief

Sometimes a western prescription has to be prepared from several formulas and made into one to meet an individual’s specific needs. While this concoction is helpful in assisting the patient to heal when mixed just right. The ingredients taken separately or mixed incorrectly can be a lethal dose. Well the same goes for herbs that are used within alternative medicine. Therefore the herbs that are reviewed within this hub are for informational purposes only. Do not attempt to mix and match these herbs on your own and remember that “more does not mean better,” it might be a lethal dose that could harm and or kill you.

Here are some TCM herbs that might be found in a mixture to provide allergy treatment of seasonal allergens:

Xin Yi Hua (Magnolia Flower )

The Magnolia flowers have a distinct lack of sepals or petals, and are touch, believed to have evolved before the appearance of bees, to avoid damage by eating and crawling beetles. Flowers range from white to this deep purple.The bark is stripped from stems, branches, and roots to be used in traditional Chinese medicine.

The magnolia flower has pungent and warm properties, and is associated with the lung and stomach meridians. Magnolia flower is typically used to treat nasal conditions, such as stuffy nose, nasal obstructions, congestion, and sinus headaches. An ointment of magnolia flower can also be applied to the skin and has proved to demonstrate both anti-anxiety and anti-angiogenic properties

Cang Er Zi San (Xanthium Powder)

In the West this plant is called the Cocklebur and if you’ve ever been stuck by one you would remember it. They are coarse annual plants with spirally arranged leaves, and the burs are very long, slender spines that are at the leaf base.

It has been said to be nature’s Dristan.The TCM formula would be better in powdered form than capsules; it is very aromatic and better therapeutically to taste than to hide in capsules.

Experiments show that Cang Er Zi has a significant inhibitory effect on histamine-induced increase in capillary permeability. Think of it as a cup of Vick’s Mentholatum tea. The formula is being considered in the treatment of a sinus headache, and maybe used with another formula for stuffy nose headaches due to the common cold.

Ban Lan Gen (Isatis Root)

In the West this plant is referred to as the Woad flower and it known to produce a blue dye. This dye chemical is extracted from the plant to produce the color indigo. TCM uses the roots of the woad which are harvested and dried during autumn. The harvested dried root is then processed into granules and dissolved in hot water or tea.

Ban Lan Gen's main function is to help clear away heat and toxic material, remove heat from the blood, subdue swelling, and relieve sore throats, and is used to treat fevers that come with the flu. B an Lan Gen Instant Beverage (isatis) feels cooling and relaxing as it reduces swollen glands and sore throat and clears complexion blemishes.

Huo xiang (Patchouli)

This is a bushy herb of the mint family with erect stems and small pale pink-white flower. Patchouli has a heavy and strong scent and has been used in perfumes for centuries. Steam scalding the leaves of this plant causes it to produce its essential oils. TCM uses the herb to treat headaches, common colds, nausea, and abdominal pain. It acts to disperse cold and dampness to remove external symptoms and harmonize the stomach. It is said to be a household Chinese medicine in China for gastrointestinal discomfort and widely used in traveling and outdoor activities, especially during the summer time. Personally, I have burned herbal Patchouli candles and have gotten relief from sinus headaches.

Ju hua (Chrysanthemum Flower)

Chrysanthemum or mums as they are called in the West are plants with large flower heads and deeply lobed leaves that range in variety of colors ranges from white, yellow or pink and more. As you may know this plant has many uses from eating, insecticidal, and medicinal. It is commonly consumed China almost as much as green tea.

Used in TCM for symptoms might include common cold and flu signs such as headache, slight chills/fever, dizziness, swelling, red painful, and/or itchy eyes, blurred vision, irritability and skin rash. This is another herb that I’ve used before however, I did not know of its medicinal qualities. A Vietnamese friend of my gave me the tea as a gift and it has an excellent taste.

Fang feng (Ledebouriella Root)

Ledebouriella Root or Fang feng means guard against the wind and it used to treat the wind/cold type of symptoms of chills, fever, headaches, and general body pain.

It dispels pathogenic wind (heat) from the body surface and purges away the dampness heat from the interior part of the body, as manifested by dryness in the mouth, discomfort of the throat, sensation of stuffiness in the chest, constipation, dark urine, local signs of inflammation, and skin eruptions. The herb specifically inhibits some influenza viruses and in vitro shigella and staphylococcus germs and is used for sore throat, headaches, and redness of eyes.

E bu shi cao (Centipeda Herb)

Centipeda Herb is collected at flowering in summer and autumn that is removed from the soil and dried in the sun.  Centipeda herb opens nasal passages, reduces swelling, relieves toxicity, and disperses pathogens.  Used as an allergy treatment for a cough, headaches, nasal obstructions, expectorations, sinusitis with nasal discharge, and sore throat. This drug would be acute conditions that block nasal passages and sinuses; to decrease toxic and traumatic swelling, and localized pain from painful obstruction. 

Bo he (wild mint or Chinese mint)

Bo he is a herbaceous perennial plant with flowers that are pale purple, white, or pink. The leaves which are in opposite pairs and the stems are harvested from this plant. It is nontoxic and is suitable for treating children.

Expels common cold of wind-heat type; treats headache, eye pain, sore throat and sinus congestion; alleviate itching; and eases indigestion.

It is highly aromatic and pungent, and has been widely used as spice or herbal tea. Possess soothing property and is best for treating common cold and minor digestive distress.

Zi su ye (Perilla Leaf)

Perilla Leaf is another member of the mint family and is an annual herb. The leaves a slightly rounder in shape and there are both green-leafed varieties and purple-leafed varieties. It has anti-inflammatory properties and is thought to help preserve and sterilize other foods.

Perilla leaf is used to relieve allergy symptoms for cold invasion with symptoms of chills, fever, headache, nasal congestion, and cough. It should not be used by allergy sufferers who have external diseases where there is already sweating or by those who have a damp-heat condition.

I hope you have found the Traditional Chinese Medicine for Seasonal Allergy Relief both helpful and informative. Please remember however if you want to give TCM a try I strongly suggest that you seek an experienced herbalist and or doctor prior to mixing any alternative medicines with the drugs (prescription or herbal) you are presently taking. And as always comments are always welcome.

Disclaimer: This information is solely for informational purposes. IT IS NOT INTENDED TO PROVIDE MEDICAL ADVICE. Before engaging in any complementary medical technique, including the use of natural or herbal remedies, you should do your own research, and then consult your present physician. If your doctor does not believe in alternative medicines and you would like to give them a try then find a reputable doctor familiar with alternative medicines that can assist you in deciding what treatments might meet your specific needs.


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    • poetryman6969 profile image


      3 years ago

      I like the idea of natural treatments so I will need to check this out.

    • Money Glitch profile imageAUTHOR

      Money Glitch 

      8 years ago from Texas

      @a.l. laurice - Hi a.l. thanks for stopping by for a read and commenting.

      @jacky jokes - No jacky, I'm not from China, however, would love to visit and learn more about the culture.

      Thanks to you both for stopping by and commenting. :)

    • Money Glitch profile imageAUTHOR

      Money Glitch 

      8 years ago from Texas

      @a.l. laurice - Hi a.l. thanks for stopping by for a read and commenting.

    • a.l. laurice profile image

      a.l. laurice 

      8 years ago from United States

      This is a great hub :) Lots of unique and really detailed information. It's a good-looking hub too lol--I love the layout and the pictures.

    • Money Glitch profile imageAUTHOR

      Money Glitch 

      8 years ago from Texas

      Hi china man! Thanks for stopping by for a read and commenting on traditional Chinese Medicine for Seasonal Allergy Relief. :)

    • profile image

      china man 

      8 years ago

      Unusual hub, both actually informative and well put together for ads - love it !!

    • Money Glitch profile imageAUTHOR

      Money Glitch 

      8 years ago from Texas

      Thanks for stopping by Habee, if you get a chance check out the other 2 hubs on allergy season as well. Hopefully, we will all have an easier allergy season this year by using some of the remedies...

    • habee profile image

      Holle Abee 

      8 years ago from Georgia

      Thanks! I'll need this in a few weeks!

    • Money Glitch profile imageAUTHOR

      Money Glitch 

      8 years ago from Texas

      Thanks for stopping by screation, to comment and share your insight. :)

    • screation profile image


      8 years ago

      One traditional medicine or herb used by the Chinese is Yin Yang. Zang is used for emotional disharmony. Some of their herbs and medicine simply enhance mood and increase blood circulation throughout the body.

    • Money Glitch profile imageAUTHOR

      Money Glitch 

      8 years ago from Texas

      Hi Maita, I love cutting a couple of magnolia flowers and putting them in a vase. The aroma goes throughout your home and really smell good as well as opens up your sinuses.

      The only time this does not work for me is when other tree pollens has fell on the blooms; then it makes me sneeze my head off. :( Thanks for stopping by for a read and sharing your insight. :)

    • prettydarkhorse profile image


      8 years ago from US

      I have seasonal allergy and this one helps a lot, Your hub is complete and magnolia is one of my fav flower as well, it does help with allergy, good job and thumbs up again Money, Maita

    • Money Glitch profile imageAUTHOR

      Money Glitch 

      8 years ago from Texas

      @rprcarz50 - Thanks so much for stopping by for a read and commenting. :)

      @anginwu - Wow Anginwu, coming from someone like you that specializes with great hubs on herbs and health; your comments mean a lot. I've got to stop by to see what you've got new. :) Thanks again, for the read and the kind comments.

    • anglnwu profile image


      8 years ago

      Nice hub. I'm very familiar with chrysanthemum and fang feng. Chrysanthemum can be steeped to drink as tea and fang feng can be added to herbal soup. Thanks for these interesting information.

    • rprcarz50 profile image


      8 years ago

      You are amazing . Another fantastic Hub!

      Great Stuff , I know you will keep on Hubbing

      Thank You !


      As always also a2z50 Keep on Hubbing


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