He Shou Wu Benefits & Uses
This root is named after a man who became famous from its use. Neng Zi was born as a weak boy. When he grew up he never married because he was impotent. At the age of 58, one day he got drunk in the forest and fell asleep. He noticed roots that appeared in his mind to be “making love”. He dug these up and later made it into a tonic he could consume.
Within a short period of time, he noticed a new energy flowing within his body. He began to feel virile, and could hardly contain his drive in the bedroom. He continued taking He Shou Wu for years which made his gray hair turn black and he fathered many children.
The legend says he lived to 160 years old and fathered 19 sons and daughter. Not bad for starting out with a weak constitution and beginning on the herb at 58.
He Shou Wu is called Polygonum multiflorum and sometimes Fallopia multiflora. It is also well known as foti or fo-ti, though this is technically inaccurate, and originally referred to a different herb.
He Shou Wu Benefits
- Supports Liver and Kidney Detoxification*
- A Mild Sedative said to Calm the Nervous System*
- Helps Enhance Fertility*
- Shown to Very Significantly Increase Levels of SOD (Superoxide Dismutase) in the Body which is a Powerful Antioxidant that Protects DNA from Damage*
- Supports Blood Building and Blood Cell Health with Iron*
- Helps Modulate Estrogen*
- Strengthens the Kidneys and Adrenals*
- Aids in Mental Clarity, Learning and Memory*
- Can help with Low Back or Knee Pain (as these are associated with Kidney Deficiency)*
- Immune System support*
- Slows Degeneration of Glands*
- Helps Strengthen the Muscles and Tendons*
- Many people report Improved Sleep*
- Inhibits Formation of Advanced Glycation End Products (AGEs)*
- Anti-Mutagenic Effects and Improves DNA Repair*
- Protects Skin from Photoaging*
- Increases Nitric Oxide and Endothelial Health*
- Improves Mitochondrial Function*
Several studies have shown that animals fed He Shou Wu live longer than their control group counterparts. In China they’ve even used it to help patients suffering from Schizophrenia.*
The principle constituent of Polygonum multiflorum is 2,3,4′,5-Tetrahydroxystilbene-2-O-β-D-glucoside (called TSG for short). Of course, it contains many other components like other stilbene glycosides, emodin, several proanthocyanidins, a high phenol content and much more.
He Shou Wu on Gray Hair and Hair Loss
The name He Shou Wu has been translated as Mr. He’s Black Hair or Hairy Back. In either case, it has to do with hair, which may be one of this root’s most hoped for benefits. You can see it worked for him in the story above.
Its principle effect in this arena seems to be in helping prevent or even restoring gray hair to its natural color. There are some studies with rats even showing regrowth from hair loss. *
In Chinese medicine, gray hair, especially premature, is an issue with Jing, which he shou wu can help restore. Our opinion is that if you’re looking to combat gray hair or hair loss then give it a shot and see how it works for you.
10:1 Full-Spectrum Water Extraction of Prepared Roots
That means there are 10 lbs. of roots to every 1 lb. of finished extract, using four-year-old roots. All the active constituents of the roots are concentrated to make this full spectrum extract.
He Shou Wu must be properly prepared in order to bring about its tonic effects. The roots are picked, chopped up, then simmered in black soybean soup. This is done until the liquid is evaporated off or absorbed. Then these prepared roots are dried, followed by being extracted with purified water. From that this powdered extract is made.
Serving size is one-half to one teaspoon twice per day which is about 3.5 grams. This can easily be mixed into water and other liquids. There are roughly 27-54 servings per 100-gram bag (a little over 3.5 ounces).
He Shou Wu Side Effects
He Shou Wu must be prepared properly to have its tonic properties. Raw, unprepared He Shou Wu is a strong laxative and should not be consumed regularly. It is potentially liver toxic in this form. However, in processed form, it is found to be protective of the liver. Beware of companies selling unprepared He Shou Wu as they are unaware of this fact.
Prepared He Shou Wu is extremely safe. In Lethal Dose 50 tests, there were found to be no deaths even after 1000g/kg!