Rehmannia (Rehmannia glutinosa, or Chinese Foxglove)
Rehmannia looks very similar to foxglove, hence its common name of Chinese foxglove. It is native to China, Japan and Korea. The attractive flowers are deep pink or red and they bloom on tall spikes that range from three to five feet tall.
Key Medicinal Uses
Internally Rehmannia is most frequently used as a tonic herb. It strengthens the blood and acts as a diuretic. It relieves fatigue and restores vitality. This herb is frequently used to promote the healing of broken or injured bones. It strengthens the heart, the liver and kidney while protecting the adrenal glands and the functions of the liver.
The herb can have some effect in lowering cholesterol, high glucose levels and high blood pressure. It increases blood flow to the brain and combats dizziness. It is sometimes used to regulate menstruation, bleeding after childbirth and to treat urinary tract disorders.
It is slightly useful for diabetes, hypoglycemia and constipation. It is also used sometimes to deal with inflammation in the digestive system. According to Chinese medicine, Rehmannia even replenishes the bone marrow. It is also used for tuberculosis, fever, hemorrhage, thirst, sores on the tongue and in the mouth, irritability and insomnia. It is undergoing study as a treatment for anemia.
Externally not used externally
Herbs to Combine/Supplement
Rehmannia is used in several Chinese medicine herbal combinations to treat lingering fever, urinary frequency, nourishing the liver and for children with poor mental function. There are several variations on the R. Six Formula used in Chinese herbal medicine to treat a number of different ailments. Consult a Chinese herbalist to see if your herbal remedies include this herb. Astragalus may make this herb more effective than if used alone.
Roots The root or rhizome is the portion used to make herbal remedies. The root is very sweet and large amounts may be difficult to digest.
Rehmannia is considered to be a safe herb. There are no known drug interactions. Mild side effects may include dizziness, abdominal pain, palpitations or diarrhea. Do not use if you are anorexic or pregnant. If you are sensitive to feverfew, you may experience side effects with this herb.
Preparation and Dosage
Rehmannia is mostly found today in commercial preparations or by prescription from a Chinese herbalist. Follow the directions given by your herbalist or follow the instructions on the label of the product you are using.
The prepared root can be taken in decoctions in doses from 9 to 30 grams per day. This plant does not tincture well.