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  • Gordon Dumoulin

Mother of Traditional Chinese Medicine summer herbs....

Sweet wormwood (青蒿, qīnghāo, Artemisia annua) is one of the mother herbs in Traditional Chinese Medicine, first mentioned as a medicinal remedy for hemorrhoids in a text known as “The recipes for 52 kinds of diseases” dated to the West Han Dynasty (168BC).

Sweet wormwood treats summer heat ailments such as fever, headache or dizziness, killing worms and parasites in the body, stimulate sweating, smoothing digestion and clears heat and toxins from the blood, used for inflamed skin or eyes. Moreover sweet wormwood contains artemisinin, the antimalarial remedy, discovered by Chinese scientist 屠呦呦 (Tú Yōuyōu) in the 1970’s for which she received the 2015 Nobel price for medicine.

Sweet Wormwood is hung on doors during Dragon Boat Festival to repel insects by the fragrance and it is believed to keep (summer) diseases away, especially from children.

Silvery Wormwood or Chinese mugwort (艾草, àicǎo, Artemisia argyi) is a close and ancient TCM relative of sweet wormwood, as well used for its health benefits during summertime. The herb is especially used in moxibustion and herbal plasters during summertime to stimulate the metabolism during summer and as preparation or ‘maintenance’ to enhance immunity for upcoming autumn and winter. Chinese mugwort is also used as health and coloring ingredient in Qingtuan (青团), a kind of glutinous rice dumplings made during Qingming Festival.

Sweet Wormwood

"summer herbs, summer health, winter preparation"

#china #chinesesociety #traditionalchinesemedicine #chineseculture

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