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Angelica Root - Angelica sinensisAngelica sinensis, commonly known as "dong quai" or "female ginseng" is a herb from the family Apiaceae, indigenous to China.
Angelica root is an aromatic plant mainly used for its stimulating effects on the digestive system. It promotes healthy digestion and calms heartburn, gas, and bloating. It also supports upper respiratory function.
Dong quai ( Angelica sinensis ), also known as Chinese Angelica, has been used for thousands of years in traditional Chinese, Korean, and Japanese medicine. It remains one of the most popular plants in Chinese medicine, and is used primarily for health conditions in women. Dong quai has been called "female ginseng," based on its use for gynecological disorders (such as painful menstruation or pelvic pain), recovery from childbirth or illness, and fatigue/low vitality. It is also given for strengthening xue (loosely translated as "the blood"), for cardiovascular conditions/high blood pressure, inflammation, headache, infections, and nerve pain.
In the late 1800s, an extract of Dong quai called Eumenol became popular in Europe as a treatment for gynecological complaints. Recently, interest in Dong quai has resurged due to its proposed weak estrogen-like properties. However, it remains unclear if Dong quai has the same effects on the body as estrogens, blocks the activity of estrogens, or has no significant hormonal effects. Additional research is necessary in this area before a firm conclusion can be drawn.
In Chinese medicine, Dong quai is most often used in combination with other herbs, and is used as a component of formulas for liver and spleen deficiency. It is believed to work best in patients with a yin profile, and is considered to be a mildly warming herb. Dong quai is thought to return the body to proper order by nourishing the blood and harmonizing vital energy. The name Dong quai translates as "return to order" based on its alleged restorative properties.
Dong quai may increase the anticoagulant effects of the drug Warfarin and consequently increase the risk of bleeding.
Angelica oil has a sweet, earthy scent. It has been used since antiquity to help restore strength and stamina during periods of convalescence. It is a superb tonic and helps support healthy immune, reproductive, lymphatic and respiratory systems.