The herbal product made from the Chinese angelica, also commonly called dong quai, dang gui, or tang kuei is derived from the root of the Chinese herb - the Angelica polymorpha Maxim - botanical name. The variety of the species is sinensis Oliv. The herb is also known as A. sinensis (Oliv.), and it is a member of the plant family Apiaceae common in and native to China. The herbal remedies and herbal medication prepared from this herb has a mildly laxative effect on people, while, it is used primarily as a uterine tonic in women, it is also used as an antispasmodic herbal agent, and it is also used for its alterative-or blood purifying-effects, which are said to be very beneficial to affected patients.
This herbal remedy is very often suggested to patients by many modern herbalists to be used in the treatment of the majority of gynecological ailments and disorders, these conditions can include persistent menstrual cramps, the presence of some irregularity or a retarded menstrual flow, and to treat physical weakness during the menstrual period of affected women. While the use of dong quai is not suggested in pregnant women, the remedy is also said provide physical relief from the many symptoms which occur during the process of menopause in women. The remedy is also known to be useful in the treatment of disorders such as hypertension and additionally, it is said to possess very effective antispasmodic properties in individuals afflicted by muscular spasms. The herb is also used to induce blood purification and to provide nourishment, for which it has a great reputation-and lastly, it has also been used in the treatment of constipation in individuals affected by this disorder.
Dong quai has been put under chemical investigation, and the herb is now known to possess at least seven different coumarin derivatives, these include the chemical compound oxypeucedanin, the compound osthole, the compound imperatorin, the compound psoralen, and bergapten-all of these compounds were present in the dong quai samples. The majority of chemical coumarins or its derivatives have known actions as vasodilators and antispasmodics in the human body, at the same time, a few of the others, such as the compound osthole, induce a stimulating effect on the central nervous system in the human body. The very presence of these chemical compounds therefore, accounts for at least some of the purported activities ascribed to dong quai.
Utilizing large and heavy doses of these coumarins often have harmful effects on the body, and it is known that some of the furo-coumarins, like the compound psoralen and the compound bergapten, may induce dermatitis in individuals exposed to them, due to the process of photosensitization which occurs because of their presence in the body. Unnecessary exposure of the human body to these compounds is undesirable according to studies done in the 1981, during the course of which the researchers came to the conclusion that these so-called psoralens present very significant and sufficient risks to humans. Recommendation of very large amounts of the furo-coumarin-containing medications such as dong quai is not made to treat patients for this very reason. At the same time, the absence of substantial clinical evidence in the Western scientific literature which may support the effectiveness of dong quai in the treatment of various conditions for which it is indeed suggested, also limits the use of this herbal remedy. For example, in the only reported U.S. based study on the potential effects of dong quai on alleviating postmenopausal symptoms-including physical symptoms such as night sweats and hot flashes-found the herbal remedy equal in effectiveness to a placebo given to the test subjects. However, in traditional Chinese medicine, dong quai remains as one of the most widely suggested medications and consequently, the remedy is far more popular in usage to other well known herbs such as the ginseng-which is quite well known in the western world. Various combinations of dong quai with other herbs is the general prescribed avenue for patients and the herb is almost never used alone in most herbal medical systems. Further clinical studies are required on the potential benefits of this herb, before full acceptance in Western societies can be realized, and many controlled clinical studies still have to follow with regard to this herb. The use of this herb as a therapeutic agent has little basis and till such times.
While it is also used in the treatment of disorders related to men, the remedies made from the Chinese angelica is considered to be the best Chinese tonic herb for women-with respect to such female disorders, the herb is very highly valued as a blood tonic in the Eastern world. Some of the positive effects associated with the herbal remedies made from the Chinese angelica include the regulation of hormones, the regulation and control of the menstruation, the herbal remedy is also supposed to be able to bring about recovery from delayed or suppressed menstrual periods, it is also said to relieve the symptoms associated with menstrual cramps, and the herbal remedy can also be used during the period of menopause to treat various symptoms which may affect the woman. The Chinese angelica herb can be eaten raw or taken in the form of a herbal tincture, the remedy also aids in relaxing the strained muscles in the uterus, and when it is used with water it can result in bringing about better toning in the uterine muscles and in bringing about stimulation to the uterine contractions, the herbal remedy can also lead to an increase in the circulation of blood in the uterine area and aids in relieving congestion which occurs along the pelvic region of the woman. Ideally, this remedy must not be taken by women who are pregnant, as it can cause potential side effects in the body.
The warming effects and the stimulating or antispasmodic abilities of dang gui are best brought forth when the herb is cooked before consumption. Some of the other beneficial physical effects of dang gui herb include helping improve the circulation in the body, the herbal remedy also speeds up tissue repair, it effectively lowers blood pressure, and can slow the pulse down, the herbal remedy can also aid in preventing disorders like atherosclerosis and blood clots from developing in the body and its ability to relax the cardiac muscles of the heart is also useful in treating certain disorders. The sedative actions of the Chinese angelica are also taken advantage off in various treatment methodologies. The nourishing effects of the Chinese angelica, it high content of major vitamins, and its actions and aid in the absorption and utilization of the vitamin E from the diet are other beneficial properties. Remedies made from the Chinese angelica are also utilized to control and treat disorders such as anemia and the angina which affects the heart.
In addition, the herbal dang gui remedy has an ability to stabilize the blood sugar levels in patients, while enhancing the functioning of the immune system at the same time. The bactericidal, the antiviral and the antifungal properties of the Chinese angelica are also useful in counteracting a whole range of other infections which can affect a person, these include common colds and flu which strike patients on a regular basis. The blood purification properties of the Chinese angelica is considered to be a very valuable ability of the herb and the remedy also has a moistening effect useful in relieving the constipation affecting the patients. The rejuvenating properties of the Chinese angelica are another useful property of the herb and the herb is also helpful in relieving the symptoms of arthritis and rheumatic pain in the affected individual. The other properties of the tonic form of the Chinese angelica is useful during convalescence, and its use as a herbal remedy is suggested to help speed the recovery process and also to increase the energy of a woman following the rigors of childbirth and labor.
The herbal remedies made from the Chinese angelica are very famous in China as a herbal tonic, this herbal tonic is taken to treat many "deficient blood" conditions, these can include anemia, and the remedy is also used to treat the symptoms of anemia occurring because of loss of blood- resulting in a very pale complexion, in palpitations, and those resulting in a lowered vitality in the body.
The remedy derived from Chinese angelica causes a "warming" effect and this herb is often known as a “warming” herb, it thus brings about an improvement in the circulation to the abdominal area, and to the areas of the body such as the hands and the feet of the affected individual. The consumption of the herbal remedy also results in strengthening of the digestive system and the process of digestion at the same time, the herbal remedy is also very useful in the effective treatment of all abscesses and boils which may affect an individual.