Bai Zhu - Atractylodes (White) Rhizome

TCM Materia Medica

Bai Zhu TCM Herb Classifications and Usages

The TCM herb "bai zhu" which in english is Bai Zhu herb"atractylodes (white) rhizome", is categorized within the "herbs that tonify qi" functional grouping. It is thought to enter the spleen and stomach channels and exhibits bitter (ku), sweet (gan) and warm (wen) taste/temperature properties.

Dosages and preparations will vary according to each individual and the overall approach of a formula, but generally this herb has the following dosage and/or preparation guidelines:

  • Dosage: 4.5-9g
  • Use raw for dampness, dry-fry for tonification

Of many possible clinical applications, it may be considered to influence the following issues/symptoms:

  • Tonifies the spleen, augments qi, dries dampness - diarrhea, fatigue, lack of appetite, vomiting, edema.
  • Stabilizes the exterior and stops sweating - spontaneous sweating due to qi deficiency.
  • Calms the fetus - arising from spleen deficiency.

Bai Zhu may potentially be used, in coordination with a well tailored formula (in most cases), to influence the following conditions: diarrhea, edema, fatigue and/or vomiting

While it may not always be included depending on the manufacturer or herbalist making the formula, bai zhu is generally included in the following 29 formulas:

ViewBan Xia Bai Zhu Tian Ma Wan (Pinellia, Atractylodis and Gastrodia Combination)

Nausea with possible vomitting from combination of damp with liver qi stagnation causing rebellious qi. Dizziness, migraines, and vertigo from damp and liver wind rising. Heavy or oppressed sensati…

ViewBa Zhen Wan (Eight Treasure Combination)

For recovery of qi and blood after acute trauma or accident For frequent heavy menstrual cycles Pale complexion, fatigue, dizziness from qi deficiency Vertigo, palpitations, anxiety from blood def…

ViewBu Zhong Yi Qi Wan (Tonify the Middle and Augment the Qi Formula)

Coldness of the limbs, borborygmus with loose stools or diarrhea due to spleen yang deficiency. Spontaneous or easy sweating, general fatigue, changes in appetite due to spleen qi deficiency. Pale …

ViewDang Gui Wan (Tangkuei Powder)

For recovery of qi and blood after acute trauma or accident, similar in usage to ba zhen wan. A range of menstrual issues when they arise from qi and blood deficiency - amenorrhea, menorrhagia, irre…

ViewDan Gui Shao Yao Wan (Dang Gui And Peony Powder)

Blood deficiency with poor water circulation - generally used for abdominal pain during pregnancy - mild to moderate possibly with cramps, lower body edema and difficult urination. Above issues wi…

ViewFang Feng Tong Sheng Wan (Ledebouriella Pills to Sagely Unblock)

High fever with aversion to cold. Thick phlegm that may be both in sinus and chest. Vertigo or dizziness that is caused by excess heat. Rashes, carbuncles, and other types of skin disorders that…

ViewFang Ji Huang Qi Wan (Stephania and Astragalus Teapills)

Wind damp / wind edema (feng shui, literally "wind water") patterns, generally acute - heavy sensation of the body, superficial edema, difficulty with urination - idiopathic edema, ascites. Weak wei…

ViewFu Zi Li Zhong Wan (Aconite Regulate Middle Pills)

Spleen yang deficiency resulting in coldness of the limbs and/or interior, borborygmus, and possible loose stools or diarrhea. Feeling full even with small amounts of food, bloating, epigastric/abdo…

ViewGan Bing Zhi Ben Wan (Liver Disease Recovery Pills)

Irritibility or easily prone to outburts or anger. Liver disease such as hepatitis, cirrhosis, fatty liver. Jaundice - yellowing of the skin, brittle nails, pale complexion.

ViewGui Pi Wan (Restore the Spleen Formula)

The formula is used to tonify both the spleen and heart which can be damaged from excessive overthinking, compulsions, etc. along with poor dietary habits and stressful lifestyle.   Anxiety, phobias…

ViewHuo Xiang Zheng Qi Wan (Agastache Powder to Correct the Qi)

Acute flu or cold symptoms including fever, aversion to cold, headaches, sinus pressure, runny nose. Vomitting and diarrhea from interior damp with possible abdominal cramps or pains.

ViewJiang Tang Wan (Lower Blood Sugar Pill)

Nourish the yin and tonify qi with particular emphasis on diabetes (primarily type II, but in some cases type I would benefit as well) when the underlying tcm diagnosis fits.  Symptoms may include st…

ViewJian Pi Wan (Strengthen Spleen Pills)

For stomach and spleen qi deficiency with dampness that has potentially generated mild interior-heat - diarrhea, abdominal pain, poor appetite, epigastric pain. May be used in early pregnancy for mo…

ViewJia Wei Gui Pi Wan (Augmented Restore The Spleen Decoction)

A combination of jia wei xiao yao wan and gui pi wan - similar effects but with more spleen qi and blood tonification. A range of stress related issues - essentially mixes of stagnation with underly…

ViewJia Wei Xiao Yao Wan (Free and Easy Wanderer Pills)

Derived from the base formula, xiao yao wan, an important formula for liver qi stagnation with herbs added to clear heat. Liver qi stagnation - menstrual issues, painful cycles, irregular cycles, br…

ViewQing Shu Yi Qi Tang Wan (Clear Summer Heat and Augment the Qi)

Please note that there are two formulas with the same name but slightly different compositions.  One is from Wang's Wen Re Jing Wei and tonifies the yin more strongly, the other (which is the one dis…

ViewQi Xue Da Bu Wan (Nourish Qi & Blood Pills)

Fatigue, lethargy, sensation of feeling heavy or cold. Low appetite, bloating, borborygmus, loose bowels. Impotence, infertility, low libedo. Insomnia, night sweats, vivid dreams, nightmares.

ViewRen Shen Yang Rong Wan (Ginseng Decoction to Nourish the Nutritive Qi)

Tonifies both qi and blood and nourishes the heart and calms the spirit - generally used for weakness from longer term or deep diseases such as cancer and for a host of other conditions affecting a b…

ViewShen Ling Bai Zhu Wan (Ginseng, Poria & Atractylodes Pills)

Diarrhea, loose stools, or mucus/greasy stools from damp accumulation in the spleen/stomach. Borborygmus, low appetite, fatigue, and/or pale complexion resulting from spleen qi deficiency. Colitis,…

ViewShi Quan Da Bu Wan (Ten Tonics Nourishment Pills)

Coming Soon...

ViewSi Jun Zi Tang Wan (Four Gentlemen Teapills)

General qi tonification formula - weak extremities, lassitude, pale face, poor appetite, loose stools. Due to the strenghtening functions can bolster immunity. Spleen qi deficiency is the backdro…

ViewTong Xie Yao Fang Wan (Important Pills for Painful Diarrhea / Calm Wind Pills)

Diarrhea, particularly with abdominal cramping. Diarrhea with alternating constipation.

ViewWu Ji Bai Feng Wan (Black Chicken White Phoenix Pills)

Coming Soon...

ViewWu Ling San Wan (Five-Ingredient Powder with Poria)

Generally used, often in conjunction with other formulas, as a mild-diuretic and mild spleen strengthening formula - for edema from spleen qi deficiency primarily.

ViewXiang Sha Liu Jun Zi Wan (Aucklandia, Amomi & Six Gentlemen Pills)

A modified version of the base, zhi zhu wan, which is used to treat qi stagnation and food retention from qi deficiency.  This modification includes herbs which add more movement and damp drying. Di…

ViewXiang Sha Yang Wei Wan (Aucklandia Amomi Nurture Stomach Pills)

Low appetite, apathy towards eating due to spleen qi deficiency. Acid reflux, indigestion, epigastric pain, tendency to feel full even with small quantities of food. Food stagnation due to overeati…

ViewXiao Yao Wan (Free and Easy Wanderer)

Depression, anxiety, loss of motivation - resulting from liver qi stagnation. Fatigue, bloating, changes in appetite from the combination of spleen qi deficiency with liver qi stagnation. PMS, brea…

ViewYi Gan Wan (Restrain The Liver Powder)

Anxiety, palpitations, easily frightened, alternating fevers/chills; heat from deficiency in the liver.Originally designed for Children who had issues such as anger, fright, fevers, insomnia, digesti…

ViewYu Ping Feng Wan (Jade Windscreen Formula)

Frequent colds, flus, chronic bronchitis - general low immunity to common infections. Spontaneous sweating, aversion to wind and/or cold. With appropriate diagnosis may be used to treat acute facia…

As noted above, bai zhu is within the herbs that tonify qi functional group. All the herbs in this category are listed below.

(truncated intro "... herbs in this category are generally sweet and rich. they are most often combined with herbs that move and regulate the qi. )".

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