Ingredient Name: Astragalus Root, Huang Qi, Bei Qi, Milk Vetch
Chinese Name: 黃耆 (huang qi) or 北芪 (bei qi)
What is this?
- It is a very common Chinese herb and can be found in the household soups (as well as in Chinese medicine)
- The astragalus root comes from a legume (specifically the pea family) and may also be called yellow milk vetch
- The root looks like dried wood and is usually light in body color with some dark pigmentation
- It is normally prepared as pictured above in thin, long pieces
- The herb is said to offer multiple health benefits and is often used to strengthen qi, boost the body’s immune system and help with heart functions
- It is slightly heaty with a slightly sweet taste
How do I prepare it?
- Simply rinse under running water and it is ready to use
Where can I buy this?
- The astragalus root can be purchased at most Chinese dried herb shops
What is the cost?
- 1 pound of dried astragalus root costs approximately $10 CAD
- The astragalus root has been a steple of chinese medicine for centuries and is often used to strengthen qi and boost the body’s immune system
- According to Western medicine astragalus helps to stimulate the body by producing a substance known as interferon while boosting red blood cell formation. Interferon, an anti viral agent, helps the body when destroying viruses and other harmful microbes
- The astragalus is a common ingredient to help build, retain and maintain heat in the body
- Another benefit of astragalus is its ability to boost energy levels and vitality. Also, astragalus root has been linked to improving blood circulation
- When used appropriately, astragalus appears to be very safe and to have few side effects
- However, very high doses may suppress the immune system