(or schizandra, as some spell it)
Isn’t that such a beautiful name for an herb?
When I first learned aboutSchisandra Berry (Wu Wei Zi in Chinese) I was immediately drawn to the beauty that the name emitted. I remember my instructor at my Holistic Nutrition school kept repeating it over and over again, and each time I felt drawn to this herb, even though I had yet to try it. When I finally got to try it, I truly fell in love!
Before I get to the details, let me tell you how you can use it:
- Brew actual berries to make a strong tea (you can usually find them at your local spice/tea store or online)
- Take in capsule form
- Buy the powder and add to water or tea
See the cool thing about this berry is that it takes you on a journey. If you place one in your mouth, you immediately taste something bitter…then sour…then sweet…salty…spicy, repeat.
It’s one of the only herbs in Traditional Chinese medicine that contains all 5 flavors. This means, according to TCM, that it reaches all organ systems. What is especially cool about Schisandra is that it is said to tonify all 5 nature elements and all 3 Treasures in Traditional Chinese Medicine; Jing, Qi, and Shen.
If you aren’t familiar with Traditional Chinese Medicine, no worries, what this all basically means is that Schisandra is a rare adaptogenic herb that is SUPER powerful without being overly stimulating. It is considered quintessential because of how well rounded it is as a tonic herb and because of how many benefits you can receive out of this little baby berry (it is quite small and I tend to personify food quite a lot)!
4 (really good!) Reasons You Need Schisandra:
- Skin: Known to beautify skin, Schisandra will make you glow! Seriously, the first thing I notice when I start taking Schisandra again is how my face just looks healthier and vibrant. This happens because it helps deactivate free radicals, which we all don’t want because they make our skin break out, lose elasticity and just look worn down.
- Sex. It can make something that feels good, feel even better. Schisandra has a reputation as an aphrodisiac; in TCM it is said to give support to the genital fluids and enhance sexual stamina for men and women. Many people have also claimed that it enhances sensation down there too! It is used in a lot of Chinese herbal formulas as a sexual tonic.
- Mind: Possibly my favorite benefit of Schisandra is how it affects the mind. Schisandra gives you mental energy that is unlike anything else I’ve ever experienced. It makes you feel alert, less agitated, calm but not sleepy, focused and concentrated. For myself, I feel more easy-going and a lot more productive when I use Schisandra. It is also said to help with memory and endurance. These various mental benefits are said to be caused by Schisandra helping to balance the central nervous system which can help harmonize the functions of the cerebral cortex.
- Liver Function: Schizandra is known to be one of the best herbal liver cleansers. It strengthens and protects the liver from toxins we experience on a daily basis. Schizandra can be great to use during a detox due to its ability to increase bile production in the liver which can help the detoxification process move along more efficiently.
So there you have it! This beauty berry is my #1 favorite tonic herb for good reason. My favorite way to consume Schisandra: place about 1-2 tsp Schisandra berries in boiling water for 3-5 minutes then pour into a cup and steep your favorite herbal tea (I prefer using raspberry or hibiscus). Drink up!
Have you used Schisandra? What other adaptogens do you like?
Related: Adaptogens Are The Top 2017 Wellness Trend You Actually Need In Your Life
7 Anti-Acne Herbs That Banish Breakout Forever
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