Recent Issues

  • Constipation


  • Chinese Materia Medica(1)
  • Terminology

About the site

>> full story

  • Purpose
  • Disclaimer
  • Background
  • Herbal Medicine
  • The Theory of Chinese Medicine
  • Profile
  • Reference Literature
  • Contact Us

Chinese Materia Medica(2)

1. Herbs for Relieving Exterior Syndromes (Pungent and Warm)

1) ephedra

2) cinnamon twig

3) schizonepeta

4) ledebouriella root

5) perilla leaf

6) fresh ginger

7) notopterygium root

8) dahurian angelica root

9) chinese lovage root

10) spring onion

11) magnolia flower

2. Herbs for Relieving Exterior Syndromes (Pungent and Cool)

(to be continued)


materia medica

Perilla Leaf


“Shisoyou”is one of the most familiar herbs in Japan, because it is indispensable for sushi and sashimi ( sliced raw fish ). This herb is warm in property, which prevents our bodies from cooling down after eating cold raw fish, and has an antidotal effect for seafood poisoning. Furthermore its flavor is perfectly suited for sashimi. This explains why shisoyou accompanies every serving of raw fish.
The Japanese word “shisoyou” comes from three Chinese words : “shi” for purple, “so” for resuscitation and “you” for leaf. What do you think its meaning derives from? The story dates back to ancient China. There was a noted doctor named Kada. One day he was asked to treat a boy, who was severely ill due to seafood poisoning. Dr. Kada didn’t hesitate to prescribe a remedy made with this herb. The boy recovered dramatically, which surprised all the people around him. This story has been exaggerated over the centuries, but it shows the power of this herb.

Botanical Name : Perilla frutescens  
Parts Used : Folium  
Possible English Names : perilla leaf  
Japanese Name : shisoyou  
Chinese Name : zi su ye  
Property : warm  
Taste : pungent  
Affinity : the channels of the LIS and DAS  
Effects : 1. relieving exterior syndrome by diaphoresis  
  2. adjusting and regulating the function of the alimentary tract to help digest and absorb  
  3. regulating stomach function to arrest vomiting  
  4. detoxication of seafood poisoning  
# "Exterior syndrome" refers to the symptoms and signs along with the cold and flu, such as chills, fever, headache, etc.



Indications :      
Signs, Symptoms and Illnesses Pattern Analysis Combination Formula

(1) chills, fever, headache, nasal congestion, etc

exterior syndrome due to exopathic wind-cold fresh ginger
* with cough and sputum  

bitter apricot kernel


* with nausea, vomiting and diarrhea stomach flu    
* in the event that the aged or children have the cold  

nut-grass rhizome

tangerine peel


(2) nausea, vomiting and a feeling of fullness in the abdomen


epigastric distension and distress due to gi stagnation in the DAS as well as stomach

tangerine peel

villous amomum fruit

* nausea and vomiting pregnancy

tangerine peel

villous amomum fruit


(3) abdominal pain, vomiting and diarrhea


seafood poisoning fresh ginger


Note : "Combination" shows medicinal herbs usually or often used in combination with perilla leaf. "Formula" shows the one which contains the group of herbs on the left.




the early stage of the common cold and flu, stomach flu, seafood poisoning, bronchitis and morning sickness on the early stage of pregnancy  
Dosage : 3-9grams  
Administration :    

to be decocted with water

for oral administration

( # see below )

This herb should not be decocted for a long time.



# Decoction
(1) Tools: sauce pan ( non-metal ), bamboo basket ( “Take-zaru” ), bowl ( non-metal ), gauze
(2) How to make :
1. Pour 4 glasses of cold tap water ( about 800ml ) into the pan.
2. Remove the medicinal herbs from the paper bag ( packaging ).
3. Add them to the water.
4. Boil and stir for about 30 min, until the total volume of the water has been reduced to half.
First heat with a full flame, then once it’s boiled, reduce the flame to simmer.
5. Place the bamboo basket with 2 sheets of gauze onto the bowl.
6. Pour the boiling water and medicinal herbs through the filter.
* Gauze is sold at pharmacies ( 5m,10m,20m ).
You should cut the gauze into a suitable sized square.
7. Divide soup into 2 cups equally.