Ren Shen


Ren Shen in TCM:

Explore the properties of Ren Shen according to Chinese
Nutrition and Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM):


English Name: ginseng, ginseng root
Pharmacuetical Name: Radix Ginseng
Properties: sweet, slightly bitter, slightly warm

Temperature: warm

Channels: LU, SP, HT

Flavors: sweet, bitter
Tonifies: qi

    Alternate Forms:
  • Ren Shen Hong (aka Hong Shen): (red, warmer) - better for qi and yang deficiency.
  • Ren Shen (aka Sheng Shai Shen/Gan Shai Shen): (fresh, dried) - better for qi deficiency.
  • Ren Shen Bai: (white) in boiling water short time soak in sugar (similar function to Shen Shai but weaker)
  • Ye Shan Shen (wild mountain ginseng)
  • Yi Shan Shen (transplanted mountain ginseng)
  • Yuan Shen (cultivated ginseng)
  • Shen Xu (root whiskers) - weaker
  • Ren Shen Ye (ginseng leaf) - bitter, slightly sweet, cold ; clears summer heat, generates fluids, clears deficiency fire (5-10g)

Actions / Indications:
  • Tonifies Lung Qi (chronic cough due to LU deficiency, wheezing; SOB; labored breathing with exertion; spontaneous sweating due to LU qi deficiency)
  • Tonifies SP and Stomach (chronic diarrhea; lethargy; lack of appetite, chest/abdominal distension; in combination for prolapse of ST, uterus, or rectum)
  • Greatly tonifies yuan qi; treats qi collapse (collapse of yuan qi, shallow respiration / SOB; cold limbs; profuse sweating; weak pulse; also after severe loss of blood)
  • Benefits Heart Qi; Calms Spirit(insomnia, palpitations or anxiety, forgetfulness, restlessness due to qi, blood, or yin deficiency)
  • Generates fluid; relieves thirst (xiao ke - wasting and thirsting disorder, fluids damaged by high fever, heavy sweating, sequela of febrile disease)
  • Supports the anti-pathogenic qi to expel pathogens (boost wei qi to help fight exterior syndromes or constipation with significant qi deficiency)
  • CC: heat excess; steaming bone disorder
  • CC: absence of significant qi deficiency
  • CC: hypertension with LV yang rising
  • CC: overdose may cause headache, insomnia, palpitations, or hypertension
  • CC: antagonistic with Wu Ling Zhi
  • CC: incompatible with Li Lu
  • CC: abstain from drinking tea (caffeine or other stimulants), eating radish or using with lai fu zi

    Special Notes:
  • Do not use with Li Lu, Wu Ling Zhi, Lai Fu Zi
  • Cooking: often decocted separately with low heat or in a double boiler
  • In difficult labor cases Ren Shen can be used to strongly tonify Yuan Qi, to replenish fluids, and it also helps to dilate the cervix.


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