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Herb of the Month: Rehmannia (Rehmannia glutinosa)

Also known as Chinese Foxglove, Rehmannia is a herb traditionally used in Chinese Herbal Medicine for fevers, some cases of dry mouth and constipation. ¹ It is also anti-inflammatory and in western herbal medicine is commonly used to help support adrenal function. ¹ This herb grows natively in Korea, China and Japan, exhibiting yellowish or reddish-violet bell shaped flowers. In the US this plant is grown for ornamental purposes, in eastern countries the plant is grown for the medicinal benefits of the root.²

While most of the literature and use of Rehmannia is based on traditional prescribing, some experimental studies support the use of this herb as an anti-inflammatory and show potential for its use in the management of skin conditions such as dermatitis.³ It is said to clear heat from the body, ⁴ thus its use in the treatment of fevers. Chinese herbalists use Rehmannia as a blood, kidney and liver tonic to help those presenting with lower back and leg weakness, dizziness, tinnitus and premature greying of the hair. ⁴

Chinese herbalists also use Rehmannia for its restorative properties as a tonic, making it a useful herb to promote health. They often prescribe it to support kidney and urinary tract health, improve digestive function and promote healthy blood circulation. ². ²

Rehmannia can be found in a variety of herbal preparations, both Western and Chinese. The tincture is also used by many herbalists and naturopaths in liquid herbal formulations addressing adrenal and kidney health.

References:

3. Kim SH, Yook TH and Kim JU, 2017, “Rehmanniae radix, an effective treatment for patients with various inflammatory and Metabolic diseases: results from a review of Korean Publications”, Journal of Pharmacopuncture, Vol. 20(2), pp. 81 – 88. [This review was supported by The National Research Foundation of Korea and funded by the Korea Government.]

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