Wednesday, June 4, 2008

Chinese Dates

Description: warm, sweet; affects the stomach and spleen

Chinese dates is most widely employed in the Chinese pharmacopoeia by adding to herbal formulas to prolong, enhance, and harmonize the effect of the other ingredients; and to circulate the herbal essences in the bloodstream and in the meridian. It nourishes the blood and calms the mind for insomnia and restlessness; invigorates the spleen and stomach with poor appetite; promotes secretions of vital fluids; retard aging; moderates the toxicity of potent drugs. It is best for fatigue, hypertension, physical exhaustion and malnutrition. It is also rich in Vitamin C therefore helps those with allergies. Red dates are also used in herbal formulas for men to improve their blood flow, and thus their athletic and sexual performance.

Black date - The ripe fruit is first smoked and dried. As a result, it is black in color. Amongst the three types of dates, it has the most medicinal value.
Red date – The medicinal fruit is oblong in shape and turn dark reddish brown when ripe. The fruit comes with or without kernels. The kernels are hot in nature therefore during confinement, it is best to use the pitted dates as the stones can create phlegm.
Brown date – this has the least medicinal value. It is added to soups for sweetness and can be taken as candies and sweetmeat.

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