HE SHOU WU FOTI: Hair Growth & Longevity
- Written by Joe Cohen
Hair Growth | Skin Glow | Longevity
This is one of those holy roots that has a whole lot of documented uses since ancient times, as well as being revered by the modern scientific community. He Shou Wu, Polygonum multiflorum, is a popular herb in traditional Chinese medicine. Commonly known as He shou wu in China and Fo-ti in the West, studies have shown this herb to be beneficial in the treatment of cancer, supporting diabetes, hair loss, hardening of the arteries, and neurodegenerative diseases. Traditionally, it's also revered as a spiritual herb, known amongst monks and healers to boost spiritual potency.
Healing Benefits of He Shou Wu found in scientific studies*:
- Anti-inflammatory: The TSG and emodin in Fo-Ti has been studied for its decrease in inflammation. Emodin protects microglia cells in the brain from inflammation.
- Promotes Immune Function: The sugars and glycosides found within Fo-ti can improve immune response and overall immune system function (immunomodulatory effect).
- Anti-Viral: Fo-ti exhibited anti-HIV by preventing the virus from entering lymphocytes in a cell-based study.
- Protects the Liver: The anthraquinones and polysaccharides found in Fo-ti protect the liver by reducing inflammation, preventing fat oxidation, and increasing antioxidant effects.
A Note on He Shou Wu:
Proper processing of the He Shou Wu is known to greatly reduce its impact on the GI tract, particularly the liver. Traditional processing involves a decoction, which is known for significant changes in its chemical profile, which inevitably influence the associated pharmacological properties of HSW. Its raw form, which is known to cause nausea and diarrhoea, is actually used in Traditional Chinese Medicine for particular functions such as for detoxification, eliminating carbuncle, malaria, and loosening the bowel, whereas the decoction is used for tonifying the kidney and liver, supplementing essence and blood, blackening hair, strengthening bones and muscles, eliminating dampness, and reducing lipid.* [Medical Reference]
Although He Shou Wu is usually used to treat various liver diseases, an increasing number of cases of potential HSW-induced hepatotoxicity result in severe drug-induced liver injury. In Chinese herbal medicine, HSW is used for strengthening and detox, yet it produces biphasic effects (meaning it can cause both liver injury and liver protection).* [Medical Reference]
Taken at a regular small dose, with complementary liver supportive herbs, reduces its potential hepatotoxicity, and enhances its esteemed vitality effects in the body.*
As a typical tonic medicine found in Chinese medicine and other healing traditions in Asia, the clinical utility of He Shou Wu largely depends on processing methods. The hepatotoxicity of HSW is not easily detected when used at recommended doses and when properly processed as a decoction. In the Chinese Pharmacopoeia the predetermined daily dose of decocted He Shou Wu is 3-6g, about 1/2-1tsp. It can be added to tea, coffee, or your favourite latte.
We recommend everyone listen to their body intuitively; follow the dosage that resonates the most with you.
The main chemicals responsible for the hepatotoxicity of HSW are free anthraquinones such as emodin and physcion [R], which are at higher percentages when consumed in its raw form. Because it also may mimic estrogen in the body, it is not recommended for those dealing with estrogen-positive cancers, or excessive estrogen count overall.
He Shou Wu*
*semi-wild roots, sustainably grown on a small farm in China from an authentic source in Yunnan; a very pristine and indigenous area of China where He Shou Wu thrives.
10:1 extract powder; prepared by the traditional method with black beans. It does not contain any fillers or additives!! Be aware that many Fo-Ti's in the market contain maltodextrin.
5oz / 142g fine powder per jar.
109 servings (using 1/2tsp per serving) per container.