New York Colds Part 2: Chinese Herbs

This fall is very cold and rainy here in New York, easy to catch a cold.  In my last post I wrote about acupuncture for the common cold.  In this post, I will discuss Chinese herbs and herbal formulas.

It is important to take the herbs that are right for you, as well as purchase high quality herbs.  So before you take any herbs, it is important to consult a trained herbalist.

Gan Mao Ling: Gan mao means “common cold” in Chinese.  This herbal formula is great for preventing and treating common colds.  Take it preventatively when there is a cold going around or if you have a cold.   It is best to treat are sore and itchy throat, and a little cough. If you are sweating gan mao ling may not be strong enough.

Yin qiao san:  Yin qiao san is stronger than gan mao ling.  If you are experiencing a light fever and light chills, sweating, and a sore scratchy throat, this may be a good formula for you.  Gan mao ling is better for mild colds and also to prevent a common cold.  Yin qiao san is better for stronger colds and it is best to take the herbs early in the cold.

Bi yan pian:  Bi yan pian is a powerful formula for nasal congestion and sinus headaches.  This can be used during the cold. It can also address the nasal congestion and runny nose that follows a cold.

Ling zhi: Ling zhi, also called reishi, is a mushroom that is used to boost immunity.  This herb is best to take in small doses as a way to prevent getting a cold.  It won’t help that much after you get a cold.  It will help to give you immune system a boost to prevent the cold from coming on.

Joseph Alban, L.Ac.
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