Chinese Angelica, Dang Gui, 当归, Angelica Sinensis

Disclaimer    For educational purposes only.  Do not use as medical advice

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Health Issues
For: PMS discomfort • Lack menstrual bleeding • Menstrual cramps • Hormone imbalance • Dysmenorrhea • Pelvic pain • Menopausal symptoms • Hot flushes • Atherosclerosis • Allergy • Poor immune system • Insulin resistance • Diabetes • Uterine weakness • Iron deficiency • Anemia • Abnormal ovarian hormone levels • Osteoporosis • Endometriosis
Attributes: phytoestrogen • antispasmodic • cholagogue • antibaterial • antiviral • antiobesity • anti-inflammatory • antifungal • mild laxative • immune system boost
Products (online examples)


Raw Root



Estrogen Cream



Tea Mix

Research (sample)


Coumarinfuranocoumarins • Ferulic Acid • n-butylidenephthalide • phthalidephytosterolcarotenoids • ascorbic acid • folinic acid • biotin • flavonoids • polysaccharide • ligustilide • sequiterpenes • carvacrol • dihyrophthalic anhydride • sucrose • beta-sitosterol • vitamin B12 • vitamin E, A, and C • folic acid • cobalt • iron • potassium • magnesium • calcium

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Fun Facts
Other Names: Dong Guai • Chinese Angelica • Female Ginseng • Taggwi (Korean) • Toki (Japanese)
Plant Family: Apiaceae or Umbelliferae

Dang Gui has been revered as a cure-all for female reproductive disorders, blood purifiers, and digestive problems.  The roots are considered most potent and are commonly used in Chinese prescriptions.  The dried leaves are used in hop bitters.  It is also a traditional birthing herb used to help delay labor and disengage the placenta after birth.

Dang Gui leaves have a celery flavor which can be a great addition to salads and seafood dishes.  The cooked stems tastes like licorice and the roots takes like sweet potatoes. 11

Of all of its active constituents, coumarin is likely the most influential.  Coumarin is a blood thinner and has been found to suppress HIV-1, has anti-inflammatory properties, stimulates the nervous system and makes this herb an antiplatelet.

Dang gui is often given as an injection in China and Japan.  Chinese Angelica is listed in the following pharmacopeias: German Commission E 1992 • Martindale The Extra Pharmacopoeia 1972 • World Health Organization

None noted
Angelica Sinensis is NOT in the USDA database. 

USA: Angelica Sinensis is not found in the wild.  

USDA Zones: 5-9

Native: China, Korea, Japan


Properties, Actions, Indications, etc.              Category: Tonify Blood 
English: Chinese Angelica    Pinyin:  Dang Gui      Pharmaceutical: Radix Angelicae Sinensis    
Organs: Heart • Liver • Spleen        Temperature: Warm (100%)
Taste: Bitter • Pungent • Sweet        Toxicity: Low
Patterns: Blood deficiency 
Actions:  Tonifies blood • Regulate menstruation • Invigorate blood • Disperse cold • Moisten intestines • Unblock bowels • Reduce swelling of sores • Alleviate pain from blood stasis
Indications: Blood deficiency • Pale complexion • Palpitation • Irregular periods • Menopausal symptoms • Dysmenorrhea • Amenorrhea • Abdominal pain • Constipation
Contraindications: Autoimmune disorder • Pregnancy • Blood thinner drugs (Wafarin) • Diarrhea • Yin deficiency with heat • Abdominal distention from dampness
Typical Dosage: 3g to 15g • Frying increases blood invigorating strength • Toasting with ash helps it to better warm the channels and stop bleeding.          Guidelines
  • Dang gui comes in raw root, tablets, capsule, and powder form.   It is also given as an injection at hospitals in Japan and China.
  • Do not use aluminum or stainless steel for Dong Guai.  Put 4 cups of water in stoneware or glass container.   Add chicken or beef and one small dong quai root, or half of a large one.  Cover and bring to a boil, then reduce heat to low and cook for 3 to 4 hours until half the liquid is left.  Consume the broth.  Best time is after the menstrual cycle.
  • Capsules For menopausal symptoms, people took 500 to 600 mg tablets or capsules up to 6 times daily.7
  • Tincture (1:5 w/v, 70% alcohol): 2 to 4 mL.  3 times daily is one possible dosing schedule - doses may vary.
  • Dong guai is usually prescribed as part of a formula containing synergistic herbs. 7
  • Infusion: 1 oz. root simmered in 3 cups of water for 30 minutes along with a little fresh ginger. Take 1 day per week as a uterine tonic.
Parts Used: Root • Leaves • Stem • The root head (Dang Gui Tou) is more tonifying and moves blood upward.   •  The body (Dang Gui Shen), is more nourishing and invigorates the blood.   • Dry fried any parts of the root will make it warmer and can be used to tonify the blood and reduces the possible side effects of diarrhea.  
Combine With Purpose
Huang Qi Blood deficiency.  Fatigue, mild fever from blood loss, anemia, poor healing sores and ulcers, leukemia, delayed periods.
Bai Shao + Shu Di Huang + Chuan Xiong Bood deficiency.  Blood stasis.  Irregular periods, amenorrhea and dysmenorrhea.
Tao Ren + Hong Hua Blood stasis.  Amenorrhea, pain and swelling.
Huang Qi + Shu Di Huang + Rou Gui Help heal sores, generate flesh, reduce pus.
Rou Cong Rong + Hou Ma Ren Qi and blood deficiency.  Chronic constipation.
Xiang Fu + Yan Hu Suo Dysmenorrhea
Dan Shen + Mo Yao Pain from blood stasis in the extremities
Huang Qi + Sheng Jiang + Lamb Post partum issues with stomach ache, hernal discofort, exhaustion and physical weakness.
Gui Zhi + Qin Jiao Painful obstruction from wind dampness.  Delayed periods.
Jin Yin Hua + Chi Shao Reduce pain and swelling from sores and abscess.
Dui Yao Pairs Purpose
Dang Gui + Huang Qi Bu Xue Tangtonify qi, generate blood, improves wound healing.  Anemia. 
Dang Gui + Rou Cong Rong Treats constipation, impaction, and megacolon from fluid deficiency, blood deficiency, or after childbirth. 
Dang Gui + Shu di Blood deficiency.  Chronic cough, asthma, and constipation from kidney yin deficiency and blood deficiency [15]
Formulas with Dang Gui
Ba Zhen Tang • Bai He Gu Jin Tang • Bu Yang Huan Wu Tang • Bu Zhong Yi Qi Tang • Dang Gui Bu Xue Tang • Dang Gui Liu Huang Tang • Dang Gui Shao Yao San • Dang Gui Sheng Jiang Yang Rou Tang • Dang Gui Si Ni Tang • Die Da Wan • Du Huo Ji Sheng Tang • Er Xian Tang • Fang Feng Tong Sheng San • Fu Yuan Huo Xue Tang • Gui Pi Tang • Hai Zao Yu Hu Tang • He Ren Yin • Huang Long Tang • Huo Luo Xiao Ling Dan • Ji Chuan Jian • Jiao ai Tang • Juan Bi Tang • Long Dan Xie Gan Tang • Nuan Gan Jian • Qi Bao Mei Ran Dan • Qing Wei San • Run Chang Wan •  Sang Piao Xiao San • Shao Yao Tang • Sheng Hua Tang • Shi Quan Da Bu Tang • Si Miao Yong an Tang • Si Wu Tang • Su Zi Jiang Qi Tang •  Tian Wang Bu Xin Dan • Wen Jing Tang • Wu Ji San • Wu Mei Wan • Xian Fang Huo Ming Yin • Xiao Feng San  • Xiao Ji Yin Zi •  Xiao Yao San • Xue Fu Zhu Yu Tang • Yi Guan Jian  • You Gui Wan • Zan Yu Dan • Zhen Ren Yang Zang Tang • Zhu Sha An Shen Wan

Be cautions with all medicine.
  • None noted


Potential Drug Interactions

Herbal medicine may interact negatively with pharma drugs and other herbs.  Examples below:

Herbs: ♦Anticoagulants: American Ginseng, Arnica, Rou Gui, Chamomile, Dan Shen, Dang Gui, Deertongue, Sheng Jiang, Goji Berry, Ginko Nutes, Notoginseng, Peach Kernel, Hong Hua, Sweet Clover, Vanilla Grass ♦ Grapefruit Effect ♦ Estrogen Enhancers ♦ Blood Sugar Reducers: Artichoke , Basil , Bell Flower , Bitter Melon , Cang Zhu , cassia cinnamon , Celery , chamomile , Chrysanthemum , Cinnamon , Dragon Fruit , Eucommia , goji berry , Heal All , Hibiscus , Huang qi , Moringa Tree , Roses , Shan yao , Shi gao , Xuan shen , Zhi mu

Pharma Drugs:♦Anticoagulants: asprin , clopidogrel (Plavix) , Coumadin , dipyridamole , enoxaparin , Heparin ♦ Grapefruit Effect: benzodiazepines midazolam (anit-depressants) , blood pressure reducers , terfenadine (antihistamine) , triazolam (anti-depressants) ♦ Blood Sugar Reducers: Acarbose (Precose ) , Albiglutide (Tanzeum) , Alogliptin (Nesina) , Bromocriptine mesylate (Cycloset , Canaglifozin (Invokana) , Chlorpropamide (Diabinese) , Dapagliflozin (Farxiga) , Dulaglutide (Trulicity) , Empagliflozin (Jardiance) , Glimepiride (Amaryl) , glipizide (Glucotrol) , Glyburide (DiaBeta , Glynase) , Insulin , Linagliptin (Tradjenta) , Metformin , Miglitol (Glyset) , Nateglinide (Starlix) , Parlodel) , Pioglitazone (Actos) , Pramlintide , Repaglinide (Prandin) , Rosiglitazone (Avandia) , Saxagliptin (Onglyza) , Sitagliptin (Januvia) , Tol-Tab) , Tolazamide (Tolinase) , Tolbutamide (Orinase)

Bibliography: [5],[8],[15]

Information in this post came from many sources, including class notes, practitioners, websites, webinars, books, magazines, and editor's personal experience.  While the original source often came from historical Chinese texts,  variations may result from the numerous English translations.   Always consult a doctor prior to using these drugs.  The information here is strictly for educational purposes. 

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