Health Benefits of Lygodium Japonicum – Ben Cao Medical Book

1. Description:

Lygodium japonicum (scientific name: Lygodium japonicum(Thunb.)Sw., also known as vine-like fern and Japanese climbing fern, Chinese Pinyin: Hai Jin Sha, Simplified Chinese:海金沙), is a species of perennial herbaceous plant in genus Lygodium (Lygodiaceae family). Found in eastern Asia, including Japan, Korea, southeastern Asia, and India, and eastern Australia, the plant can grow up to 30 metres (98 feet) in length. The spores of Lygodium japonicum act as diuretic and discutient in traditional Chinese medicine (CTM) used in treating diseases and health problems including urethral problems and abdominal bloating.

2. Odour, Properties And Channels:

The spores of Lygodium japonicum is considered to have sweet, brackish and cold properties and to be associated with the bladder and small intestine meridians.

3. Uses, Health Benefits of Lygodium Japonicum & Medical Formulas:

3.1 Reducing Inflammation And Relieving Pain

A decoction of Lygodium japonicum spores, white atractylodes rhizome, licorice root and pharbitis seed is taken orally to treat abdominal bloating.

3.2 The Excretory System

A decoction of Lygodium japonicum spores, herba pyrrosiae, soapstone, Polyporus umbellatus, cinnamon, white atractylodes rhizome, peony root and licorice root is used in treating urinary tract infections (UTI), characterized by dysuria (painful urination) or blood in the urine.

Powdered Lygodium japonicum spores and tea leaves is taken with licorice root soup to treat difficulty in passing urine.

4. Contraindication, Side-effects & Cautions:

Administration with caution for people with deficiency in kidney.

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 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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