Hyperhidrosis is more or less a sign or symptom of another condition (menopause, lung disease, or cancer) characterized by excessive sweating. Statistics provided by PubMed Health indicate that about two to three percent people in the United States are diagnosed with hyperhidrosis. Containing therapeutic properties, Chinese herbs can relieve hyperhidrosis symptoms but it is advised to talk with your healthcare provider first before availing of those Chinese herbs for therapy.
Chinese Herbs Properties
Chinese herbs possess qualities that indicate their functions, stated by the author of “Chinese Medical Herbology and Pharmacology,” John Chen, Ph.D. According to Chen, those properties are direction, taste, and temperature. Herbs are categorized as hot, warm, neutral, cool, or cold. Herbs that are hot and warm treat cold and cool conditions, such as cold feet and hands. Conversely, cold and cool herbs treat hot or warm hot conditions, such as the flu. Chinese herbal medicine has five primary tastes: salty, bitter, sour, sweet, and acrid. Salty herbs treat kidney disorders and alleviate constipation. Bitter herbs induce a purging effect on the body as it flushes out fluids and removes excessive perspiration out of the body. Sour herbs treat excessive vaginal discharge, diarrhea, and excessive sweating, and prevent the loss of fluids. Sweet herbs enhance the effects of other herbs and improve digestion while acrid herbs boost blood circulation and induce sweat. According to Chen, the movement orientation of Chinese herbs in the body is either outwards, inwards, downwards, or upwards. Herbs flowing outward push pathogens, such as bacteria or viruses, away from the body. Inward-flowing herbs prevent fluid loss, such as excessive sweating. Herbs flowing downward help treat rebelling conditions, such as vomiting, while upward-flowing herbs address diarrhea and other descending conditions.
Herbs that Control Hyperhidrosis
Schisandra is an herb commonly used in traditional Chinese medicine to lessen spontaneous sweating, according to Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center. Several animal experiments show that schisandra possesses antioxidant anti-inflammatory properties; however, there is still no clinical trial that can confirm the effectiveness of this herb against hyperhidrosis. When using this herb, expect side effects such as heartburn and central nervous system depression.
White Peony Root
The Chinese call white peony root, Bai Shao Yao. It is found in the Chinese provinces of Anhui, Szechuan, and Shejian. This perennial plant has a root that is believed to possess cold and sour attributes which are excellent in treating or even curing hyperhidrosis. Usually taken as a tea, five to ten grams of dried white peony root is mixed in boiling water for several minutes before consuming the mixture. Chinese medicine practitioners caution against taking doses greater than fifteen to thirty grams, as this root can induce diarrhea due to its bitter quality.
For thousands of years, astralagus has been used by traditional Chinese medicine practitioners, according to the University of Maryland Medical Center. This plant grows in the eastern and northern regions of China, and in certain parts of Korea and Mongolia. This perennial herb has a dried root that can be used to treat health issues that induce excessive sweating, such as kidney disease, fever, or stress. Besides the root of astralagus, shen-nong.com states that cinnamon twig and ginseng can help restore the healthy function of sweat pores. Other herbs such as immature peach, fossil bone, glutinous rice straw root, gallnet of Chinese sumac, root of ephedra, shriveled wheat, and oyster shell all possess astringent qualities that can halt hyperhidrosis.
Emily Farish Acupuncture
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