Chalk As Medicine – Ben Cao Medical Book


Definition: Chalk is a soft, white, porous, sedimentary carbonate rock, a form of limestone composed of the mineral calcite.

Odour & Nature: Bitter, wet in nature, non-toxic,

Indications & Formulas:

Chalk powder can be applied externally to treat heat rash in babies.

A mixture of chalk powder and well water can be used to treat a bleeding nose.

Pills made of chalk powder, dried ginger, papermulberry leaf (楮叶) can be to treat diarrhoea.

Medicine in powder form made from chalk powder, rice vinegar and dried ginger can be used in treating regurgitation (the expulsion of material from the pharynx, or esophagus, usually characterized by the presence of undigested food or blood).

Pills made of chalk powder, alum and ginger juice can help get ride of a bad cough.

A solution of chalk powder and verdigris (a green or bluish patina formed on copper, brass, or bronze surfaces exposed to the atmosphere for long periods of time) can be used to heal blepharitis.

A mixture of chalk powder and lard can be used externally to treat enlarged finger tips, pain or discomfort, swelling and tenderness to touch.

Chalk powder can also be used in some other formulas in treating amenorrhea (absence of menstruation — one or more missed menstrual periods), uroschesis, cold hands and feet, and other diseases.

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.

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