Niu Bang Zi - Great Burdock Fruit, Arctium

TCM Materia Medica

Niu Bang Zi TCM Herb Classifications and Usages

The TCM herb "niu bang zi" which in english is Niu Bang Zi herb"great burdock fruit, arctium", is categorized within the "herbs that release the exterior wind heat" functional grouping. It is thought to enter the lung and stomach channels and exhibits acrid, bitter (ku) and cold (han) 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: 3-9g

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

  • Expels wind-heat (acrid), benefits throat - fever, cough, sore, red, swollen throat.
  • Clears heat (bitter, cold), relieves toxicity, vents rashes - red swellings, carbuncles, mumps, acute febrile rashes, early stages of measles with incomplete expression.
  • Moistens intestines (rich plant oil - slippery) - constipation due to wind-heat (cold nature of the herb).

Niu Bang Zi has some precautions to be considered (see our precautions list).

  • Avoid in qi deficiency, diarrhea, lack of excess heat.
  • Avoid when open sores and/or carbuncles are present.

Our clinical staff have made the following notes, regarding niu bang zi:

Niu Bang Zi may potentially be used, in coordination with a well tailored formula (in most cases), to influence the following conditions: constipation, cough, fever, mumps and/or sore throat

While it may not always be included depending on the manufacturer or herbalist making the formula, niu bang zi is generally included in the following 5 formulas:

  • Bu Fei Er Jiao Wan (Tonify the Lungs Formula with Gelatin) - Lung yin deficiency with strong heat signs and/or bleeding …
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  • Pu Ji Xiao Du Wan (Universal Benefit Decoction To Eliminate Toxin) - Acute febrile disorder (wind-heat & damp-phlegm) of t…
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  • Xiang Yin Wan (Golden Voice Pills) - Benefits the yin and qi of the lungs, clears heat and wind …
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  • Xiao Feng Wan (Clear Wind Pill) - Itchy and red skin lesions, possibly with weeping -psoriasi…
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  • Yin Qiao Wan (Honeysuckle and Forsythia Formula) - Common cold or flu presenting with fever w/slight or no chi…
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    As noted above, niu bang zi is within the herbs that release the exterior wind heat functional group. All the herbs in this category are listed below.

    (truncated intro "... many are acrid and warm severe fever with mild chills and sore throat. some are good for venting rashes or wind-heat eye problems. )".

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