- Overview |
- Schizandra Berry Facts |
- Schizandra and Health |
- Schizandra in Traditional Chinese Medicine |
- Schizandra in Daoism |
- Schizandra Berry and Wisdom |
- Adaptogenic Properties |
- Tonic Effects |
- Balancing Effects |
- Cleansing and Detoxifying |
- Skin Care Benefits |
- Sexual Health Benefits |
- Schizandra and Glutathione |
Schizandra Berry (also spelled Schisandra) is regarded as the top herb in Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) for balancing the body, as well as one of the top herbs in all of Traditional Chinese Medicine. Schizandra Berry is a scientifically-classified adaptogen, capable of regulating many bodily functions and bringing systematic balance to the body. Schizandra Berry is revered as a Superior or Tonic Herb for its ability to extend energy, vitality, and life.
Of the three classes of herbs in TCM, Schizandra Berry is considered to be one of the top herbs in the highest Superior or Immortal Food class. This class of herbs is said to provide vitality, balance and strength and can be taken daily to promote overall health and wellbeing. Schizandra Berry is revered for its ability to balance chi - life force energy and help the body maintain vitality, health and wellness.
|Common English Names:||Schizandra Berry, Schisandra Berry, Chinese Magnolia Vine Fruit, Orange Magnolia Vine Fruit|
|Botanical Name:||Schisandra chinensis (Turcz.) Baill.|
|Pharmaceutical Name:||Fructus Schisandrae Chinensis|
|Pinyin Name:||Wu Wei Zi|
|Literal Name:||“five-flavored seed”|
|Alternate Chinese Names:||Bei Wu Wei, Wu Mei Zi, Bei Wu Wei Zi|
|First Significant Written Source of Information:||Shen Nong Ben Cao Jing (Divine Husbandman’s Classic of the Materia Medica) written prior to 200 C.E.|
|Principal Growing Countries||Including: China, Japan, Korea, Russia, Siberia, United States|
|Tastes:||Sweet, Pungent, Salty, Sour, Bitter, (Astringent)|
|Elemental Energies:||Earth, Metal, Water, Wood, Fire, (Ether)|
|Primary Meridians Used:||Spleen, Stomach, Lung, Large Intestine, Kidney, Bladder, Liver, Gall Bladder, Heart, Small Intestine, Pericardium, Triple Warmer|
|Plant Lignans:||Over 50 lignans including: Schizandrol A, Schizandrol B, Schisandrin A, Schisandrin B, Schisantherin A Schisantherin B, Gominsin N, Gominsin O|
|Vitamins:||Including: Vitamin A, Vitamin C*, Vitamin E, Vitamin B1 (Thiamin), Vitamin B2 (Riboflavin), Vitamin B3 (Niacin)|
|Lipids:||Including: Linoleic acid, Oleic acid, Linolenic acid, Lauric acid, Palmitic acid|
|Organic Acids:||Including: Citric acid, Malic acid, Tartaric acid|
|Minerals:||Including: Iron, Zinc, Magnesium, Selenium**|
|Content in Volatile Oil:||Including: alfa-pinene, camphene, beta-pinene, myrcene|
|Phytosterols:||Including: Beta-sitosterol, Stigmasterol|
|Anti-oxidants:||Including: Lignans, Flavonoids, Polyphenols, Anthocyanins, Oils, Proteins, Vitamins|
|Primary Benefits:||Including: General Health, Energetic Balance, Restorative Energy, Calming Relaxation, Mental Clarity, Physical Stamina, Immune Protection, Cellular Regeneration, Cleansing Detoxification, Improved Consciousness|
4 Well-established Adaptogens
- Top 5 Herbs For Experiencing Superior Health
- 6 Tonic or Superior Herbs Revered by the Great Sages as the Quintessential Substances to Cultivate the Three Treasures (Qi, Shen, and Jing)
- 50 Fundamental Herbs in Traditional Chinese Medicine
* Vitamin C may reduce the risk of gastric cancer.
** Selenium may reduce the risk of prostate, colon, bladder, or thyroid cancer.
Active ingredients including lignans, vitamins and phyto-nutrients in Schisandra chinensis provide a normalizing effect on the body. Schizandra Berry lignans have been scientifically found to act as liver, lung and kidneys tonics and balance the immune system, while normalizing the nervous system and acting as a digestive aid. Schizandra has also been studied based on its numerous anti-oxidant, anti-bacterial, anti-inhibitatory and anti-depressant properties.
In Traditional Chinese Medicine, Schizandra Berry has been used for many health-related conditions including: boosting energy at the cellular level, conditions of the digestive tract, stimulating the immune system, stress, fatigue, exhaustion, irritability, insomnia, radiation protection, regulating blood sugar, counteracting the effects of sugar, regulating blood pressure, regulating cholesterol, anxiety states, depression, dyspnea (shortness of breath), vision, night vision, eye fatigue, speeding recovery after surgery, coughs, enuresis (bed-wetting), frequent urination, involuntary discharge of semen, night sweats, spontaneous sweating, generating bodily fluids, wakefulness, regulating concentration, regulating coordination, motion sickness, regulating endurance, suppressing hunger, and alleviating thirst.
Click Here to watch a video about Schizandra Berry referencing Dr. Chang and Dr. Chang Naturals.
Click Here: Watch Dr. Oz and Dr. Maoshing Ni discuss the benefits of Schizandra Berry on The Dr. Oz Show.
Here is a video from a man explaining the benefits of Schizandra Berry:
For thousands of years, Schizandra Berry has aided countless people in living longer, healthier, more active lives. The use of Schisandra Berry for medical purposes is attributed to the Chinese. Schisandra Berry is said to "prolong the years of life without aging" in the Divine Husbandman's Classic of the Materia Medica written prior to 200 C.E.. Schizandra Berry has been used for at least 3,000 years by people in China and has been used, praised, and recommended additionally by the cultures of Korea, Siberia and Japan for centuries. Schizandra Berry's reputation has been earned for its remarkable ability to help balance the body, prolonging life, helping the body adapt to stress, and nourishing chi - life force energy.
Scientists are continuing to discover remarkable properties of Schizandra Berry and continue research into its scientifically-proven results. Schizandra Berry has been extensively studied by scientific and medical researchers. There are over 156 scientific studies on Schisandra chinensis listed at PubMed.gov, The U.S. National Library of Medicine National Institutes of Health website, and there are hundreds more scientific studies on Schizandra Berry in Russian and Chinese that have not as of yet been fully translated into the English language.
Schizandra Benefits and Health
Schizandra Berry has been used for thousands of years for a variety of health-related needs including overall healthy: energy, vitality, cell function, calming relaxation, mental clarity, stamina, immunity, detoxification, reproduction, digestion. In addition, Schizandra Berry is recognized for its general health and body regulating abilities. Schizandra Berry is regarded as one of the premier tonic herbs for balancing chi in the body. Chi - life force energy is the animating force in the body responsible for keeping the body alive.
Schizandra Berry is known as a whole body tonic herb capable of balancing the body. The following are lists of body organs, organ systems and pathways that Schizandra Berry is recognized in supporting:
|Pancreas||Subtle Energy System|
|Cells||Muscular Skeletal System|
|Reproductive Organs||Urinary System|
Schizandra Berry works by supporting the endocrine system and glands.
|Pineal gland||Regulates wake and sleep patterns|
|Pituitary gland||Regulates homeostasis|
|Thyroid gland||Regulates energy and protein|
|Thymus gland||Regulates adaptive immune system|
|Adrenal glands||Regulates stress hormones|
|Ovaries||Regulates female hormones|
|Testis||Regulates male hormones|
Schizandra Berry is considered one of the great treasures in Traditional Chinese Medicine. Schizandra Berry has all 5 tastes: sweet, pungent, salty, sour and bitter. Each of the 5 tastes corresponds to an organ system in the body. Each of these organ systems contains a Zang (solid) Yin (receiving) organ and Fu (hollow) Yang (giving) organ in balance. The following Zang Fu Organ System Diagram illustrates how each Zang and Fu organ needs to be balanced to help balance the body.
|Lung||Large Intestine||Pungent||Metal||Increases circulation|
|Liver||Gall Bladder||Sour||Wood||Maintains balance|
|Heart||Small Intestine||Bitter||Fire||Increases metabolism|
Schizandra in Daoism
Going back into China’s ancient history, we find that the Daoists (Taoists) knew of Schizandra Berry perhaps as early as 2000 BC. The Daoists' famed pursuit of longevity, extraordinary health and natural medicines to heal and balance, inevitably lead to the discovery and use of Schizandra Berry, which continues to this day. Renowned herbalist Ron Teeguarden writes that Schizandra Berry was his Daoist teacher Sung Jin Park's favorite herb because “it contains all five elemental energies in abundance, contains all three treasures in abundance, and enters all twelve meridians. Master Park considered it to be the quintessential herbal substance”. High on the list of reasons Schizandra Berry is considered special are its renowned balancing effects on the body and the emotional nature.
Schizandra Berry and Wisdom
Schizandra Berry can be felt opening up the meridians in the body, especially the Governing or back spinal meridian. This corresponds to Schizandra Berry's ability to open up the higher faculties of learning and wisdom. Schizandra Berry can be considered the consummate "wisdom herb" for its ability to help regulate the body, restore mental clarity and connect with spiritual truth. This wisdom ability has been recognized for thousands of years by those who have ingested Schizandra Berry for a while. Schizandra Berry helps to restore concentration, mental focus while "calming" the mind. This calming ability is recognized by Schizandra Berry's ability to open up oxygen intake in the lungs to provide increased oxygen to the brain and other major organs in the body. Schizandra Berry optimizes blood flow to the brain and central nervous system resulting in increased responsiveness and tactile ability.
In the West, Schizandra Berry is becoming widely known for its adaptogenic effects. Simply defined, an adaptogen is a substance that helps the body ‘adapt to stress’ – be it physical, mental, emotional, environmental or combinations of all these factors. Only a few plants display true adaptogenic qualities. They include several forms of Ginseng, Licorice, Rhodiola, and of course Schizandra Berry. Some, like Schizandra Berry, have been observed for centuries for their ability to help humans cope with the stress of living.
In its adaptogenic role, Schizandra Berry works to help bring what is termed “homeostasis” to the organs of the body, balancing functions and exerting a normalizing effect. This balancing becomes evident to the regular user. In addition to relief from stress, there comes improved concentration, mental clarity, reduced fatigue, improved memory, better sleep, more enjoyable sex, and often an elevation of mood and emotional stability.
Adaptogens are capable of offering immediate results to those who are significantly out of balance, physically and, or emotionally. The best way to benefit in the long run - with lasting results - is to use an adaptogen over time. Schizandra Berry and its adaptogenic qualities have been studied since the 1950’s. Early work was done with athletes, soldiers, airline attendants and others. The American Botanical Council’s Monograph on Schizandra (Roy Upton) writes of these studies: “Doses of 350-6000 mg of whole berries, or 2 g of extract, increased stamina and recovery time after exercise, improved the ability to perform concentration-intense tasks, and decreased fatigue. Numerous other studies with racehorses reported enhanced physical performance, faster recuperation and improved serum parameters”.
In China today, Schizandra Berry is prescribed for a variety of conditions by Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) Practitioners. As an astringent tonic, it is used for treating dry coughs and asthma. It has been found useful to those suffering from insomnia, urinary problems, night sweats, anxiety, and physical exhaustion. Many find relief from respiratory tract disorders and allergies.
Chinese herbalists practicing have long recognized Schizandra Berry as one of its most important medicinal plants. It is considered one of the Fifty Fundamental Herbs of Traditional Chinese Medicine, an honor especially impressive as there are over 4,500 plants utilized in its practice. Robert Bidleman writes, “In the traditional view, herbs are considered to have a unique ‘signature’ in appearance as well as taste and other attributes. In this case, Schizandra Berry being called ‘Wu Wei Zi’ or ‘five flavored seed’ is very much considered a balanced herb due to this quality of having every flavor. This characteristic of containing all five flavors also relates to its inherent quality of imparting the energy of the five elements in a balanced and profound manner. We may perceive this balance in different manners, and the results cannot be denied as these powerful little red Schizandra berries have an unique ability to tone and balance not only physiological but emotional states as well.
Cleansing and Detoxifying
Importantly, Schizandra Berry has been shown to assist the body in the detoxification process, helping rid the body of toxins including heavy metals, harmful chemicals, alcohol, tobacco particles and more. An extremely important attribute of Schizandra Berry is its usefulness as a detoxifying agent. When taken on a regular basis, it has shown itself to be an important liver and blood cleansing aid (see this article), helping the body rid itself of toxins to help avoid serious damage to the body.
Skin Care Benefits
By the time of the Great Ming Dynasty (1368-1644), Schizandra Berry's reputation for preserving youthful vigor, and bestowing beauty was becoming well known. Chinese women of the Imperial Court, whose ‘job’ it was to ‘practice the Art of Beauty’, were especially taken with Schizandra Berry. Master herbalist Ron Teeguarden echoes this sentiment today when he writes, “Schizandra is widely used to beautify skin and protect it from the damaging effects of the sun and wind. Due to the astringent quality of Schizandra, the skin tends to hold moisture and becomes full and beautiful…I have seen the benefits of this herb with my own eyes hundreds of times…People who start taking it regularly all change for the better. Their skin virtually glows and becomes clear and fine after several months.”
Sexual Health Benefits
Herbalist Robert Bidleman notes that during the Great Dynasty Period, Schizandra Berry was extensively used as highly desirable sexual tonic, and for this reason alone was especially prized by women of the court. Ron Teeguarden writes, “Schizandra is said to increase the Water Qi (Chi) in the Kidney. In particular it is said to vastly increase the water of the genital organs, referring to the sexual fluids. Schizandra is said to promote the production of semen. It is famous for its ability to relieve sexual fatigue and for increasing the sexual staying-power in men. Schizandra is one of the most important astringent herbs used in Chinese herbalism. An astringent herb conserves fluids, and in the case of Schizandra, it tends to retain sexual fluids until the appropriate time of release”. Schizandra Berry has been scientifically shown to increase moisture of the female genitalia and increase sensitivity. Schizandra Berry is known to increase libido and promote a heightened sense of sexual euphoria.
Schizandra Berry has been used for many health conditions worldwide, and continues to be used to maintain health. Schizandra Berry is considered one of the great herbs and its use is prescribed by many leading health practitioners to restore the body to balance and help the body maintain its health. Schizandra Berry is used to establish harmony in the body to allow the body to heal itself. Experience superior health and use Schizandra Berry as a daily tonic.
Schizandra and Glutathione
Glutathione is an anti-oxidant released by the body in response to stress. Learn about new scientific breakthroughs regarding the role of Schizandra Berry in the production of glutathione.
- Robert Bidleman
- Ron Teeguarden
- Roy Upton
For more resources and information, see the Links page.
These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.