As we journey through autumn 2023, it's time to gear up for the changes in the season. The transition from summer to autumn often brings cooler temperatures and increased susceptibility to common colds and illnesses. To fortify your immune system and stay in optimal health during this time, consider incorporating astragalus root, known as Huang Qi in Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), into your daily routine. In this blog, we'll explore five great ways to use Huang Qi for immunity and well-being as we fall into the autumn season.
What is Dried Astragalus Root?
Astragalus, known as "Huang Qi" in Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), is a medicinal herb derived from the root of the Astragalus plant. It has been a fundamental component of TCM for over 2,000 years and is highly esteemed for its health-promoting properties. Astragalus is celebrated for its potential ability to boost the body's vital energy, known as "Qi," and strengthen the immune system. With its long history of traditional use and modern scientific research supporting its potential health benefits, astragalus continues to be a popular herb in both traditional and complementary medicine systems around the world.
What are the health benefits of Dried Astragalus Root?
In TCM, astragalus root is associated with the Earth element. The Earth element is related to the Spleen and Stomach meridians and is considered an adaptogenic. It is characterised by qualities like nourishment, stability, and grounding and promoting overall balance and stability in the body. It is often used in TCM to enhance overall vitality, promote longevity, and fortify the body against various illnesses especially as the seasons get cooler.
Some potential Western benefits of this herb include:
- Balance, stability and vitality in the body
- Addressing lungs issues
- Aid digestion
- Respiratory health
- Strengthen Immune system
- Support overall well-being of the body
- Boost Qi (vital energy) & promote harmony within the body.
- Aid fatigue
- Help the bogy adapt to stress and regain balance
Lets look at top 5 ways to use astragalus root and how to introduce it into your daily routine...
1. Astragalus Root Tea
Astragalus root tea is a simple yet effective way to harness the immune-boosting benefits of Huang Qi. To prepare this tea, follow these steps:
- 5-6 slices of dried astragalus root (Huang Qi)
- 1-2 cups of water
- Optional: honey or lemon for flavour
- Add the astragalus root slices to a pot of water.
- Bring the water to a boil, then reduce the heat and let it simmer for 20-30 minutes.
- Strain the tea, and add honey or lemon for taste, if desired.
2. Immune-Boosting Soup
Huang Qi can be a valuable addition to your homemade soups, especially as we transition into the cooler months. Here's how to prepare an immune-boosting astragalus soup:
- Astragalus root (Huang Qi)
- A mix of vegetables, herbs, and your choice of protein
- Broth or water
- Add astragalus root to your soup ingredients.
- Let the root simmer along with other ingredients for an earthy, immune-boosting flavour
3. Tinctures and Extracts
Astragalus root tinctures and extracts are convenient ways to get your daily dose of Huang Qi. These concentrated forms of the herb can be easily added to water or your favourite beverage. Always follow the recommended dosage.
4. Capsules and Supplements
For those who prefer a more straightforward approach, astragalus root is available in capsule or supplement form. These are easily accessible and offer a consistent dosage of Huang Qi to support your immune system. Always seek advice from a qualified practitioner about taking any supplements.
5. Incorporate in Stir-Fries
Incorporating astragalus root in your autumn stir-fries can be a delicious and healthy choice. Use slices of dried Huang Qi to infuse your stir-fry with its subtle, nutty flavour and immune-boosting properties.
As we welcome the autumn, it's crucial to prioritise your immune health. Astragalus root, or Huang Qi, has been a trusted ally in Traditional Chinese Medicine for centuries, known for its immune-enhancing and adaptogenic qualities. By incorporating Huang Qi into your daily routine, you can bolster your immunity and stay strong and vibrant throughout the season. Always consult with a healthcare professional or TCM practitioner before introducing new herbs or supplements into your wellness regimen. Here's to a healthy and immune-boosted autumn!