Ephedra: Ephedrae Herba, Ma Huang

Ephedra is known as “Ma Huang” in Chinese Medicine.  Ma Huang has the properties of being warm and bitter.  It mainly enters the lung channel and strongly disperses fluids in the body.  Ma Huang descends the lung qi to stop cough and wheezing while opening the pores to promote sweating.  The excess fluid also descends to the bladder to be excreted through the urine.  Due to the diuretic properties of this herb, it is helpful in treating edema.   According to the Materia Medica, the toxic dose of Ephedra is 30-45g.  Overdose of this herb could cause palpitations, insomnia, cardiac arrest, stroke, chest pain, respiratory arrest, and blurred vision.

Disclaimer:  Please consult your physician, board certified herbalist, or other health care practitioner before using any herbal supplements.  The information presented is for educational purposes only.

 Bensky, and Andrew Gamble.  Chinese Herbal Medicine: Materia Medica.  Rev. Edition. Seattle, WA, Eastland Press, 1993.