The king of bitters: andrographis paniculata

Andrographis paniculata (chuan xin lian) is a Chinese medicinal herb generally suggested for the alleviation of upper respiratory tract infections and influenza and cold symptoms, inflammation, gastritis. It’s well known for its strong antiinflammatory and wide-spectrum antimicrobial actions.

Here we analyze one ‘over the counter’ patent medicine formulation consisting of three herbal extracts:

Andrographis paniculata leaf, dry extract (120mg)
Taraxacum mongolicum herb, dry extract (60mg)
Isatis tinctoria root, dry extract (60mg)

Andrographis paniculata

Green Chiretta; 穿心蓮 Chuan Xin Lian

Green chiretta cultivated throughout tropical southern Asia and is a tall, flowering plant native to India. It includes a long, thin stalk with green, oblong-shaped leaves and branches that are smaller holding small white flowers with rose-purple spots.

Also called the ‘King of Bitters’, the incredibly bitter leaves and roots have for ages been applied by traditional Chinese medicine and Ayurvedic medicine. It’s among the very bitter herbs. To clear heat, it enters the lung, small intestine, large intestine and stomach meridians, in Chinese medicinal usage, eliminate swelling and remove toxins, dry dampness.

The plant is used to take care of the common cold, digestive complaints, colic pain, liver disorders and upper respiratory tract infections. It’s now popular in Scandinavian nations treat and to prevent the common cold.

Green chiretta has been widely examined for its variety of pharmacological effects. Extracts of the plant contain many effective diterpenoids, polyphenols and flavonoids with antiinflammatory, immunostimulatory, anti-infective, anti bacterial, anti cancer, anti-oxidative, hepato-protective and cardio-protective properties.

Systematic reviews of double blind, controlled trials support green chiretta as an efficacious and protected treatment for the alleviation of symptoms of upper respiratory tract infection.

Taraxacum mongolicum

Dandelion; 蒲公英 Pu Gong Ying

Hundreds of species of dandelion grow in the temperate regions of North America, Asia, and Europe. Dandelion is a hardy, changeable perennial that may grow to a height of almost 12 inches. Dandelion stalks are topped by glowing yellow flowers which open under sun.

Dandelion leaves and roots are put to use by conventional Chinese, Arabian, Welsh and Native American healers for centuries to treat many different liver, gall bladder, digestive and kidney ailments. It’s seen for its tender nature and light influence on the liver.

In traditional Chinese medicine, dandelion is a cold, sweet and bitter herb that enters the stomach and liver meridians to drain dampness and clear heat. The bitter compounds help stimulate digestion and bile flow from the liver and gall bladder to help in the metabolism of fats.

Dandelion is an all-natural diuretic that increases urine production by encouraging the excretion of water and salts from the kidney. It detoxifies the blood, and accelerates the removal of dampness and inflammation from the liver, intestines and gall bladder.

Dandelion is a rich source of vitamins D, C, and A, B complex, along with minerals like potassium, iron, and zinc. The dried roots of the plant are popular in medicine although the leaves may also serve as a salad green.

Isatis tinctoria

Indigowoad Root; 板藍根 Ban Lan Gen

Woad, also called dyer’s woad, is a member of the Brassica family native to the grasslands of southeastern Russia. It spread extensively across Europe and Asia and is cultivated in the northern Chinese regions of Gansu, Beijing, Heilongjiang, Henan, Jiangsu and Hebei. Both root of woad and the leaves are used.

Woad is a bitter, cold herb that enters the stomach and heart meridians to toxins and clear heat, cool the blood and soothe the throat. Woad leaves comprise tryptanthrin, a firmly anti inflammatory alkaloid, and is used for treating infections including encephalitis, upper respiratory tract infection and gastroenteritis.

Traditionally, the woad plant’s roots are picked during late fall, dried and processed into granules called Banlangen Keli. The granules are dissolved in hot water and drunk as a tea to ease sore throats and flu.

In vitro and human research have proven woad root extracts to be antiviral, antibacterial, and anti-carcinogenic. It’s popular in treating fevers, inflammation, flu and meningitis with a wide spectrum antimicrobial action. Woad root comprises an effective compound used in treating chronic myelocytic leukaemia indirubin,.

The earliest recorded medicinal usage of woad extends to at least the first century AD. Woad additionally, additionally has an extensive history of use as a plant source of indigo dye.


For the alleviation of inflammation as a result of excessive heat, viral and bacterial infections; common cold of wind-heat kind; epidemic diseases with the symptoms of fever, head ache, asthma; cough as a result of lung-heat; bloated and raw throat; acute throat inflammations with swollen glands and temperature; acute gastritis; urinary tract infection; eczema.


Chuan Xin Lian isn’t appropriate for babies under the age of 12 months. Absent. Not to be taken with antacids, lithium, quinolone antibiotics or anticoagulants.