Rice bean (scientific name: Vigna umbellata (Thunb.) Ohwi and Ohashi, also known as ricebean, Chinese Pinyin: Chi Xiao Dou, Simplified Chinese: 赤小豆), is a species of warm-season annual vine legume with yellow flowers and small edible beans in genus Vigna (bean family, Fabaceae). Widely found in humid tropical to sub-tropical, to sub-temperate climate, the plant can grow up to 100 cm tall. The seed of rice bean is used as antibloat drug, jaundice expelling drug and discutient (reducing swelling) in traditional Chinese medicine (CTM) and widely adopted in treating different diseases and health problems, such as bed-wetting.
Other simplified Chinese names for rice bean include: 饭豆, 菜豆, 赤豆, 赤豇豆, 红豆, 红饭豆, 四季豆, 叶名藿.
2. Odour, Properties And Channels:
Rice bean is considered to have sweet, sour, neutral and nontoxic properties and to be associated with the heart and small intestine meridians.
3. Uses, Health Benefits of Rice Bean & Medical Formulas:
3.1 Reducing Inflammation, Swelling And Relieving Pain
Crucian cooked with fresh phytolacca acinosa root and vigna umbellata seeds is taken on an empty stomach to treat edema (swelling caused by fluid retention).
Powdered Illicium anisatum leaves, Vigna umbellata seeds and bitter wine are mixed and applied externally to treat acute mastitis.
Brushing teeth with rice bean powder helps to relieve toothache.
3.2 Bleeding Stopping
Rice bean (soaked in vinegar) is dried and pounded for oral taking to treat bleeding caused by hemorrhoids.
3.3 The Excretory System
A decoction of rice bean and rice bean leaves is taken orally to treat frequent urination.
A decoction of rice bean leaves can be used to treat enuresis (more commonly known as bed-wetting. Nocturnal enuresis, or bed-wetting at night, is the most common type of elimination disorder).
3.4 Gynecological Diseases and Disorders
A decoction of rice bean is taken orally to treat caked breasts (or galactostasis).
4. Contraindication, Side-effects & Cautions:
Administration with caution for people with deficiency of yin.
The Ben Cao Medical Book (also known as Compendium of Materia Medica or Ben Cao Gang Mu; Chinese: 本草纲目) is the most famous and comprehensive medical book ever written in the history of traditional Chinese medicine (TCM). Compiled and written by Li Shi-zhen (1518~1593), a medical expert of the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644) over 27 years.
The Ben Cao Medical Book records and describes all the plants, animals, minerals, and other objects that were believed to have medicinal properties in TCM. The book reflects the pharmaceutical achievements and developments of East Asia before the 16th century. On the basis of his predecessors’ achievements in the pharmacological studies, Li contributed further by supplementing and rectifying many past mistakes and misconception in relate to nature of many medicinal substances and causes of various illnesses. Charles Darwin, originator of the biological theory of evolution, regards the book as the “ancient Chinese encyclopedia”.
Disclaimer: The Ben Cao Medical Book is translated by ChinaAbout.net. The information on this website is not intended to replace a one-on-one relationship with a qualified health care professional and is not intended as medical advice. It is intended as a sharing of CTM knowledge and information from the research and experience from the author Li Shi-zhen. Kindly be alert that the CTM knowledge and ancient formulas given above are likely NOT medically proven and may contain misconceptions.