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Chapter Three Digestant Formulae

Digestant formulae are mainly composed of digestont herbs which have the effects of promoting digestion, removing retention of food, relieving stuffiness and fullness. They are all used to treat internal food retention and pertain to resolving therapy among the eight therapies.
The application field of resolviog therapy is comparatively extensive. All the retention or stagnation syndromes of qi, blood, phlegm, dampness and food can be treated by this therapy. this chapter is mainly to discuss the formulae for promoting digestion and removing food retention, and the rest will be discussed in chap ter 11, 12,13 and 14 respectively.
Digestant formulae are applied to syndromes of internal food retention doe to improper diet. Food retention resulting in dysfunction of the stomaeh-qi is manifested by epigastric and abdominal distention, belching, acid regurgitation, poor appetite, anorexia, vomiting, diarrhea or sticky stool, thick and greasy coating. Internal food retention is usually treated with hawthorn fruit, medicated leaven, germinated barley, rice sprout, radish seed and chicken’s eizzard-skin as the main herbs. Among them, hawthorn froit is chiefly for meat retention; medicated leaven, germinated barley snd rice sprout for food retention; radish seed is applied to stuffiness and fullness; chicken’s cizzard-skin to heavy fond retention; onripened bittar orange to severe stuffiness and fullness. if the retention is too heavy to be treated by digestant herbs, then morning glory seed, rhubarb and areea seed can be used to purge the retention.
If fond retention is complicated by deficiency of the spleen and stomach, thei pilose asiabell root, bighead atractylodes rhizome and licorice root can be used cooperatively; if internal dampness retention is complicated, then poria, pinellin to her and water plantain, etc. can he used cooperatively. For the qi stagnation, tangerine peel, aucklandia root, green tangerine peel, amomom fruit arid magnolia bark can be cooperated ; For the complication of damp-heat, cnptis root and seotellana root can be used together.
All the digestant and purgative formulae have the effect of eliminating figured excessive evils. However, all purgative formulae have powerful porgstive effect, they are applied to the excessive syndrome with emergant disease state.
While the digestant formulae have the moderate effect, so they are usually applied to food retention syndrome which is formed gradually. Though the effect of digestant formuale is moderate by comparing with that of purgative fortoulue, they sitll cannot he applied to eases of chronic deficiency of ihe spleen and stomach. For the cases of chronic retention with injury of the genuine qi, the therapy of hoth reduc tion and reinforcement should be used. The reprosentative formulae ore FlarmonyPreserving Pills, Spleen-Strengthening Pills and Aucklandia and Areca Seed Pills.
Harmony-Preserving Pills
Mo he wén
SOURCE: Danxi’s Experiential Therapies
INGREDIENTS:
hawthorn fruit 180g
Medicated leaven 60g
Pinellia tuber 90g
Poria 90g
Tangerine peel 30
Fursythia fruit 30g
Radish seed 30g
DIRECTIONS:Crind the above herbs into powder. Then mix it with water to make into form of pills as large as Chinese parasol seed. 6 to 9 gram of this pills each time.
EFFECT:Promoting digestion and harmonizing the stomach.
INDICATiONS: All the food retention syndromes manifested by stuffiness, fullness and distending pain uf epigastrium and abdomen, belching with acid re gLirgitation, anorexia, nausea or vomiting, diarrhea, thick and greasy cnuting, slippery pulse.
ANALYSIS OF FORMULA: This is a light formula for promoting digeslion and resolving accumulation. As the main herb, hawthorn fruit can resolve all kinds of food retention, especially the accumulation of meat and greasiness. Being the as aistant herbs, medicated leaven is to strengthen the spleen for promoting digestion and resolving accumulation of old decayed food; radish seed is tu lower qi and pro
- mote digestion, being guod for resolving accumulation of wheaten food arid phlegm. Pinellia tuber, tangerine peel and poria arc to dry dampness fur strengtherung the spleen, activate mji fur harmonizing the stomach as well as resolving phlegm for relieving vomiting. They act as the adjuvant herbs.
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Unripened Bitter Orange Stagnation-Dispelling Pills
zhi shI dào zhI wan
SOURCE: Differentiation on Endogenous and Exogenous Diseases
INGREDIENTS:
Rhubarb 30g
Unripencd bitter orange l5g
Poria 9g
Seutellaria root 9g
Coptis root 9g
Bighead Atraetylodes rhizome 9g
Water plantain 6g
DH{ECTIONS:Crind the above herbs into powder,then mix it with water to make into form of pills as large as Chinese parasol seed, 6 to 9 gram of this pills each time.
EFFECTS:Resolving food retention, clearing heat and dampness.
INDICATIONS:Food retention. The rawness and dampness of food brings a- boot heat which is manifested by stuffiness and fullness of chest and epigastrium, abdominal pain with diarrhea, or constipation and scanty dark urine, yellow and greasy coating, deep forceful pulse.
ANALYSIS OF FORMULA: As the main herb, rhubarb is to purge food retention and damp-heat,thus inducing the aceLimulated heat out through stool. Unrip ened bitter orange acts as the assistant herb to lower qi for resolving accumulation and stuffiness. As the adjuvant herbs, coptis root and seutellaria root clear away heat and dry dampness for relieving diarrhea; bighead atraetylodes rhizome is to strengthen spleen for drying dampness; poria and water plantain are to excrete water and dampness for relieving diarrhea; medicated leaven is to promote digestion for resolving stagnation.
Anekiandia and Areca Seed Pills
ma xidng bing lang wan
SOURCE: Confucian Duties for Their Parents
INGREDIENTS:
Aueklandia root 30g
Areea seed 30g
Green tangerine peel 30g
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Tangerine peel 30g
Burreed tuber 30g
Coptis root 30g
Phellodendron bark 90g
Rhubarb 90g
Nutgrass flatsedge rhizome l2Og
Murniog glory seed 120g
DIRECTIONS:Grind the above herbs into powder, then mix it with water to make into form of pills as large as Chioese parasol seed. 3 to 6 grams each time.
EFFECTS:Activatiog qi to remove stasis and purging accumulated heat.
INDiCATIONS: Internal retention and stagnation manifested by stuffiness, fullness and disteoding pain of epigastrium and abdomen, dysentery with tenesmus, or constipation, yellow and greasy coating, deep forceful pulse.
ANALYSIS OF FORMULA: This is a common formula for activating qi to re move stasis and purging heat to relieve constipation. As the main herbs, aucklandia root and areca seed activate qi and resolve stagnation far relieving fullness and pain. Rhubarb and morning glory seed act as the assistant herbs tu purge accumulated heat and to remove stasis for relieving constipation. As the adjuvant herbs, phellodendrun bark and coptis root are to clear away heat and to dry damp ness for relieving diarrhea; green tangerine peel and tangerine peel are to regulate qi for resolving retention; nutgrass flatsedge rhizume and hurreed tuber are to soothe the liver-qi fur relieving qi stagnation within blood.
Sn this formula is suitable to the cases of exuberance of the genuine qi with excessive evils. If it is erroneously applied to deficient cases, h may injure the stomach-qi.
The Aucklandia and Areca Seed Pills recorded in Collection of Formnlae with Notes has another three herbs, i. e. bitter orange, burreed tuber and mirabilite ta strengthen the power of activating qi for removing stasis in addition to herbs of this formula. In another formula, Chinese angelica runt is added.
Unripened Bitter Orange and Atractylodes Pills
zhizhâ wan
SOURCE:Created by Zhang Jiegu, quoted from the book Treatise on Spleen and Stomach
INGREDIENTS:
Unripened hitter orange 30g
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Bighead atractylodes rhizome 60g
DIRECTIONS: Grind the ahove two herhs into fine powder. Then mix it with water to make into form of pills as large as Chinese parasol seed. 6 to 9 gram with lotus leaf deeoction each time.
EFFECT: Strengthening the spleen for resolving stuffiness.
INDICATIONS: Deficiency of the spleen with qi stagnation and food retention manifested by stuffiness and fullness of chest and epigastrium, anorexia.
ANALYSIS OF FORMULA: This is a formula with stronger resolving effect and lighter reinforciug effect. As the main herb, bighead atractylodes rhizome strengthens the spleen and stomach for dispelling dampness. Unripened bitter orange is the assistant herb to lower qi and resolve accomulation for relieving stuffi ness and fullness. The purpnse that the dosage of bighead atractylodes rhizome is twice than that of unripened bitter orange is to lift the lucid qi and to lower the turbid qi. Lotus leaf can assist bighead atractyludes rhizome in strengthening the spleen and stomach.
This formula can he modified in clinic to treat gastroptusis, gastroneurosis and chronic gastritis pertaining to deficiency of the spleen with qi stagnation.
ASSOCIATED FORMULAE:
<1) Peptugenic Pills (qd indi dii did wan) ,(Orthodox Medical Book)
On the basis of Unripened Bitter Orange and Atractyludes Pills medicated leaven (30g) and germinated barley ( 30g) are added. Effect: strengthening the spleen to promote digestion. Indication: epigastrium and abdominal distention due to overeating.
(2) Tangerine, Pinellia, Orange and Atractyludes Pills Q.ut bàn zhi zliz) wan) (Elementary Medicine)
On the basis of Unripened Bitter Orange and Atractyludcs Pills tangerine peel(30g) and pinellia tuber(30g) are added. Effects: strengthening the spleen to resolve phlegm and regulating qi to resolve stuffiness. Indication: improper diet injuring the spleen with retention of phlegni marked by chest distress and epigastrium stuffiness.
(3) Aucklandia,Amomum,Orange and Atractylodes Pills (.xiang she zhizhd wan) , (Analysis on the Secrets of Life-Preserving):
On the basis of Unripened Bitter Orange and Atractylodes Pills amomum fruit(30g) and aucklandia root(30g) are added. Effect: strengthening the spleen and activating qi. Indications: poor appetite due the spleen deficiency, or chest dis79
tress and epigastrium stuffiness due to retention nf old food.
NOTES:All the shove three formolae are modified from Unripened Bitter Or ange and Atroctylodes Pills and a11 hsve effect of strengthening the spleen to resolve stoffiness. The Peptogenic Pills stresses on promoting digestion and resolving stasis; Anaklandia, Amomoni, Orange and Atractylodes Pills lay stresses on resolving torbidity by its aroma property and activation qi to assoage pain; while Tangerine, Pinellis, Orange and Atractylodes Pills stresses on drying dampness and resolving phlegm.
Spleen-Strengthening Pills
jiàn p1 wan
SOURCE: Standards of Syndromes sod Treatment
INGREDIENTS:
Bighead atractylodes rhizome 75g
Aoeklsndia root 22g
Coptis root 22g
Licorice root 22g
White paris 60g
Ginseng 45g
Medicated leaven 30g
Tangerine peel 30g
Amomom froit 30g
Germinated barley 30g
Ilswthorn froit .SOg
Chinese yarn 30g
Nutmeg 30g
DIRECTION:Grind the above herbs into powder. Then mix it with water to make into form of pills as large as green gram. 6 to 9 gram of this pills each time.
EFFECTS:Strengthening the spleen and harmonizing the stomach, promoting digestion and relieving diarrhea.
TNDICATIONS:Deficiency of the spleen and stomach with retention of food manifested by pnar appetite, stuffiness and fullness of epigsstriom and abdomen, loose stool, greasy and slight yellow caating,feeble polse.
ANALYSIS OF FORMULA: This is a common formula far deficiency of the spleen with fond retention which transforms into heat. As the main herbs, gin seng, bighead atraerylndes rhizome sod paria strengthen the spleen far expelling
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dampness arid reinforce the middle qi. Acting as the assistant herbs, hawthorn fruit,medieated leaven and germinated barley are to promote digestion and to re move stasis. Being the adjuvant herbs, aucklandia root, amomum fruit and tange rine are to regulate qi for harmonizing the stomach; Chinese yam and nutmeg strengthen the spleen for relieving diarrhea; eoptis root clears heat and dry damp ness. Licorice is the dispatcher herb to harmonize all the components as well as to invigorate the spleen and stomach by cooperating with the main herbs (i. a. the Four Gentlemen Deeoction) . This formula stresses on strengthening the spleen, so it is named “Spleen Strengthening”
If the heat manifestation is absent, eoptis root should be removed. For the deficient cold of the spleen and stomach, coptis root should also be removed, and dry ginger or prepared aeonite lateral root can be added to warm the interior for expelling cold.
Unripened Bitter Orange Stuffiness-Relieving Pills
(Also named Laughing Pills)
zhi ski xido p1 wan
SOURCE: Secret Records of the Orchid Chamber
INGREDIENTS:
Dry ginger 3g
Roasted licorice 6g
Barley sprout leaven 6g
White poria 6g
Bighead atraetyiodes rhizome Gg
Pinelha tuber leaven 9g
Ginseng 9g
Magnolia Bark 12g
Unripened bitter orange 15g
Captis root 15g
DIRECTIONS:Grind the above herbs into powder Then nnx it with waler to make into form uf pills as large as Chinese parasol seed. 6 to 9 gram each time.
EFFECTS: Strengthening the spleen and harmonizing the stomach to resnlve stuffiness and fullness.
INDICATIONS: Deficiency of the spleen and stomach with combination of cold and heat nianifestecl by epigastrie stuffiness and fullness, pnor appetite, fa
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tigued body and lassitude, or disteotion after meal with irregular stool.
ANALYSIS OF FORMULA: As the main herb, Unripened bitter orange breaks qi for relieving disteotioo and resolving stasis. Magnolia hark as the assistant herb is to dry dampness fur relieving fullness and to activate qi fur resolving stasis ; coptis ruot is to clear away heat and dry dampness; pinellia tuber leaven is to lower the rebellious qi for dissolving coagulation. Cuptis root cooperating with pinellia tuber can promote flow of qi to resolve stuffiness through the effects of opening by pungent heat nature and descending by bitter cold nature; ginseng as adj uvant herbs is to invigorate the spleen qi ; bighcad atractyludes rhizome and pa rio strengthen the spleen for expelling dampness; dry ginger warms the middle for dispelling cold; barley sproat leaven promotes digcstiun for harmonizing the stomach. Licorice is the dispatcher herb to harmonize medicinal properties as well as to tonify the spleen qi.
This formula is modified from both Pincllia Ilcart-Purging decoction and Un ripened Bitter Orange Pills. In this formula, the dosage of Unripened bitter or ange, magnolia hark and coptis root are comparatively large, so it stresses on activating qi to resolve stuffiness as well as drying dampness and clearing away heat. However, this formula is laid more emphasis on resolving than reinforcing, while Spleen-strengthening Pills and Unripencd Bitter Orange Pills are emphasized on more reinforcing than resolving. The different emphasis of herbs should be learned from experience.
In Summary
There are totally 6 digestant formulae. All the Harmony-Preserving Pills, Unripened Bitter Orange Stagnation-Dispelling Pills and Aucklandia and Areca Pills are suitable to syndromes of internal retention without injury of the genuine qi. Harmony-Preserving Pills is mainly to promote digestion for harmonizing the stomach, so it is the light formula for promoting digestion and resolving stasis. Bath Unripened Bitter Orange Stagnation-Dispelling Pills and Aucklandia and Ar— era Fills have effects of purging heat and resolving stasis, and their purgative puwer is larger than that of Harmony-Preserving Pills. By comparison, the former is suitable to case of light retention marked by stuffiness hut without fullness be cause of its lighter purgative power and good effect of expelling dampness; while the latter is suitable tn case of heavier retention because of its stronger purgative power. All the Unripened Bitter Orange and Atractylodcs Pills, Spleen Strengtha ning Pills and Unripened Bitter Orange Stuffiness Relieving Pills are the formulae
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for both resolving and reinforcing. In Unripened Bitter Orange and Atractylodes Pills, the dosage of bighead atractylodes rhizome doubles that of unripened hitter orange, so it is suitable to syndrome of the spleen deficiency with qi stagnation because of more reinforcing than resolving; Splccn-Strcngthening Pills is modified from the Four Gentlemen Decoetion which has a powerful effect of invigorating the spleen for relieving diarrhea, so it is suitable to deficiency of the spleen with food retention complicated by damp-heat because of cooperating eoptis root to clear away heat; Though Unripened Bitter Orange Stuffiness-Relieving Pills is al so modified from the Four Gentlemen Decoction, unripened bitter orange, magnolia bark and eoptis root are larger in dosage, so it is suitable to case of both defi cieney and excess, both cold and heat with stagnation of qi and retention of dampness marked by stuffiness and fullness with anorexia because of more resolving than reinforcing.

 



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