Wu Wei Zi - Schisandra Fruit/Seed

TCM Materia Medica

Wu Wei Zi TCM Herb Classifications and Usages

The TCM herb "wu wei zi" which in english is "schisandra fruit/seed", is categorized within the "herbs that stabilize and bind" functional grouping. It is thought to enter the heart, kidney and lung channels and exhibits sour (suan) 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: 1.5-3g raw
  • Tonic: 6-9g

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

  • Constrain leakage of lung qi, enriches kidney yin - chronic cough and wheezing due to kidney and lung deficiency.
  • Tonify the kidneys, bind the essence, stop diarrhea - nocturnal emission, spermatorrhea, leukorrhea, frequent urination, daybreak diarrhea.
  • Inhibits sweating, generates fluids - thirst with excess sweat, spontaneous sweating, nightsweats, xiao ke.
  • Quiet the spirit, calm the heart - irritability, palpitations, insomnia due to blood deficiency or kidney and heart yin injury.

Wu Wei Zi has some precautions to be considered (see our precautions list).

  • Do Not Use With Presence Of OPI.

While it may not always be included depending on the manufacturer or herbalist making the formula, wu wei zi is generally included in the following 19 formulas:

ViewAn Shen Bu Xin Wan (Calm the Shen and Supplement the Heart Pills)

Insomnia and palpitations Anxiety, possible difficulty with concentration Irritibility and restlessness Tinnitus

ViewBi Yan Wan (Nose Inflammation Tablets)

For acute or chronic rhinitis resulting from the combination of lung qi deficiency and phlegm accumulation. Runny nose, sneezing, congestion due to phlegm. Can be used to treat for general cold or …

ViewBu Nao Wan (Brain Supplementing Pills)

A range of psychiatric, cognitive decline, trauma issues - benefit and clears the brain, transforms phlegm and tonifies kidney qi and the blood. Often used for both general cognitive decline/dementi…

ViewBu Yang Huan Wu Tang Wan (Great Yang Restoration Pills)

Fatigue, weakness, with pale complexion due to chronic qi and blood deficiency. Hemiplegia, slurred speech or involuntary muscle control due to blockage of the channels and collaterals.

ViewGeng Nian An Wan (Peaceful Menopause)

Menopause symtpoms including hot flashes, night sweats, mood swings, restlessness and anxiety as a result of yin deficiency.   Can be used for other yin deficient symtpoms such as tinnitus, dry skin…

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…

ViewMai Men Dong Yin Zi Wan (Ophiopogon and Trichosanthes Combination)

Lung and stomach yin deficiency - this is a modified version of Mai Men Dong Tang - fei wei (lung atrophy) syndrome in Chinese Medicine - dry cough from yin fluid damage, generally arises from defici…

ViewMing Mu Di Huang Wan (Rehmannia Pills to Brighten the Eyes)

Blurry vision, floaters, possibly with dryness of the eyes as a result of the liver yin failing to nourish the eyes and kidney yin failing to brighten the vision.

ViewQing Fei Wan (Clear The Lungs Decoction)

Clears heat and phlegm and replenishes lung yin - chronic cough, generally with thicker yellow mucus, sore throat. With the right factors aspiration pneumonia, pneumonia, bronchitis, tuberculosis,…

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…

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…

ViewSheng Mai San Wan (Generate the Pulse Pills)

Respiratory issues from lung qi and yin deficiencies - chronic cough, wheezing. May be used for damage from longer term illnesses and/or the overuse of wind clearing formulas for colds/flus - nights…

ViewSheng Mai Yin Wan (Replenish Pulse Pills)

Dry mouth, dry skin, dark or scanty urine from yin and fluid deficiency. Fatigue, shortness of breath, and spontaneous sweating.

ViewShen Jing Shuai Ruo Wan (Stress Reducing Pill)

For common variants of the modern western lifestyle - in Chinese Medicine terms, calms the spirit, balance liver and kidney yin, for a range of psycho-emotional and physical issues from chronic stres…

ViewTe Xiao Zao Ren An Mian Wan (Peaceful Sleep Tablets)

Insomnia, vivid dreaming, nightmares. Acute emotional instability. May be used to treat convulsions or spasms that are caused by a combination of blood deficiency with wind.

ViewTian Wang Bu Xin Wan (Emperor of Heavens Special Pill to Tonify the Heart)

Anxiety, insomnia, irritability, night sweats, hot flashes, flushing or sensation of heat in the palms due to deficiency heat. Insomnia, poor memory, poor focus and concentration due to yin deficien…

ViewWu Zi Yang Zong Wan (Five Seeds to Bring Forth Offspring)

Impotence, premature ejaculation, noctural emissions, low libedo from weakened kidney jing (essence). Poor concentration and memory, listlessness, general fatigue and worsening eyesight also resulti…

ViewXiao Qing Long Wan (Minor Blue Dragon Pills)

Cold/flu like symptoms such as aversion to cold, cough, clear watery phlegm -from exterior wind cold invasion. Wheezing, heavy sensation, edema due to interior water accumulation.

ViewYu Quan Wan (Jade Spring Pills)

Xiao Ke (wasting and thirsting syndrome), qi and yin deficiencies of the kidney and spleen most commonly seen in the advanced forms of diabetes type II - excessive thirst, excessive urination, strong…

As noted above, wu wei zi is within the herbs that stabilize and bind functional group. All the herbs in this category are listed below.

(truncated intro "... stabilizing and binding herbs most often have sour and astringent properties. they are useful for conditions involving excess discharges or structures slipping from proper positions (uterine prolapse, excessive sweat, diarrhea, excessive…)".

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