Constipation can be tricky as it at the end (no pun intended) of the entire metabolic and digestive process of the body. Its best to get a diagnosis in Chinese terms but we can make some generalizations. Dryness is a big cause of constipation. For example, if the dryness is the result of something like chemotherapy then you might want to look into Ma Zi Ren Wan which moistens. This is because a dry body will create dry stool as well. The tongue in a case like this will be dry. Another option is Zhi Bai Di Huang Wan. If you have alternating loose and dry stool then take a look at Jian Pi Wa which harmonizes the stomach. If you are overweight then look at Bao He Wan. The tongue in this case will have a thicker coat, perhaps yellow. Finally, Da Cheng Qi Tang will purge the bowels but shouldn’t be used long term as the intestine will become accustomed to it and stop working. The tongue in this case will have a coat and the tongue itself will be red or purplish.
Er Zhi Wan is a simple formula to build yin. What makes it interesting and useful is that both the herbs are themselves dry in their appearance and not “sticky” like often used Yin tonic herbs like Shu Di Huang (rheumania) or Mai Men Dong (ophiopogonis).
We often use this combination in other formulas or on its own who find that the traditional moistening Yin herbs “clog things up”. Often a yin deficiency can co-exist with a damp condition making boosting the yin a difficult situation. This is where Er Zhi Wan comes in very handy.
Nu Zhen Zi – Fr. Ligustri Lucidi – Nourishes and tonifies the Liver and Kidney Yin, clears Deficiency Heat (heat that comes from lack of Yin)
Mo Han Lian (aka Han Lian Cao) Hb. Ecliptae- Nourishes and tonifies the Liver and Kidney Yin,cools the Blood and stops bleeding.
Chaihu (Radix Bupleuri) [caution – Because of the Chai Hu (Radix Bupleuri) this formula must NOT be taken with Interferon.)
Huangqin (Radix Scutellariae)
Houpo (Cortex Magnoliae Officinalis)
Zhishi (Fructus Aurantii Immaturus)
Yinchen Hao (Herba Artemisiae Capillaris)
Zhi Zi (Fructus Gardeniae)
Da Huang (Radix et Rhizoma Rhei)
Mang Xiao (Natrii Sulfas)
“Chai-Qin-Cheng-Qi Decoction (CQCQD) is modified from Da-Cheng-Qi Decoction (Cortex Magnoliae Officinalis, Fructus Aurantii Immaturus, Radix et Rhizoma Rhei and Natrii Sulfas), which is a well-known and popular traditional Chinese medicine that is used as a purgative in China and East Asia.”