AMERICAN ASSOCIATION OF CHINESE HERBS
Pinyin: suan zao ren (chao)
ENGLISH NAME: Jujube Seed (Stir-Fried)
LATIN NAME: Stir-Fried Ziziphi Spinosae Semen
Properties: sweet, neutral
Channels Entered: Heart, Liver
CHINESE THERAPEUTIC ACTIONS
1. Nourishes the Heart and Calms the Shen (Spirit)
2. Prevents Sweating
10 to 18 grams in decoction. The maximum dose for Suan Zao Ren is 30 grams. Crush before decocting to increase the surface area and enhance the extraction of active constituents. As a powder, take 1.5 to 3 grams before bedtime. Unprepared Suan Zao Ren is cooler and better for insomnia with heat signs. The dry-fried form is warmer, and better for Heart and Spleen deficiencies with palpitations, poor appetite, and spontaneous sweating. The dry-fried form has a more potent effect to calm the shen and relieves insomnia. Dry frying is done by cooking the herb at a low temperature until the seeds turn dark in color, expand in size, or burst. The dried herb should also be crushed prior to decoction. Once dry-fried, it should be used as quickly as possible to prevent loss of efficacy.
CAUTIONS I CONTRAINDICA TIONS
• Suan Zao Ren is contraindicated in patients with insomnia caused by excess heat or by hot phlegm accumulation.
• Use it with caution for patients who have diarrhea or an exterior condition.
• Use of this herb may be associated with drowsiness and sedation. Therefore, individuals who take this herb should exercise caution if driving or operating heavy machinery.
• Suan Zao Ren should be used with caution during pregnancy, as it stimulates the contraction of the uterus.