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Managing Allergies: An Herbal Approach

June 8, 2010 by  

Managing Allergies: An Herbal Approach

Spring and summer present many with a certain nagging problem: allergies. No matter what you do, if you’re prone to allergies you will get them. And each year seems to be worse than the previous one.

Allergic reactions are caused when the immune system reacts to allergens in the environment. Actually, the immune system over-reacts, or works too hard, to battle the symptoms common to allergies. Such symptoms include red, itchy, swollen and/or watery eyes, stuffy or runny nose, post nasal drip, headache, fatigue, itchy throat, dry mouth, coughing and wheezing.

Allergies are generally caused by wind-born pollen from trees, grass, plants or weeds entering the nasal passages. When these allergens collide with the body’s defense systems the nasal mucosa swells, blocks the passageway and can cause sinus infections.

In traditional Chinese medicine (TCM), we say that allergic rhinitis is caused by a deficiency of lung and kidney wei qi (or “defensive energy”; you could call it the immune system). This allows what is termed “wind-cold” (clear mucus) or “wind-heat” (yellow mucus) to retain in the nasal passages and/or lung system. The term “wind” is used to mean an airborne cause.

Luckily, TCM has several natural herbal approaches to remedy these symptoms by balancing the body’s defensive energy. These herbal formulae are Bi Yan Pian, Pe Min Kan Wan and Xin Yi San. Before taking them, you should consult a TCM practitioner to determine your “pattern” of allergic reaction so the correct formula is used. Reading more about them in a simple online search is another way to decide if they are right for you. In any event, these formulas are natural and harmless, meaning they will cause no side effect if an incorrect formula is taken.

Pe Min Kan Wan (Nasal Clear Pills) treats allergies, common colds and nasal or sinus congestion. It does this by dispersing wind, clearing heat, expelling toxins, transforming phlegm and unblocking the nose.

Pe Min Kan Wan is a formula comprised of different herbs including: jin yin hua (honeysuckle), cang er zi (xanthium), ye ju hua (wild chrysanthemum), bai zhi (angelica), e bu shi cao (centipeda) and bo he (mint).

This herbal formula is indicated for wind or wind-heat obstructing the nasal passages. If this formula is for you, you would be experiencing nasal obstruction, copious amounts of clear or white watery nasal discharge, or thick yellow or green nasal discharge, sinus pain, headache, dizziness, sneezing, itchy nose and eyes, heat and redness around the sinus cavities, earache, cough and wheezing. Also, your tongue would be redder in color than usual. This formula is especially effective for nasal or lung problems with an allergic component.

In terms of specific ‘allopathic’ designations, Pe Min Kan Wan possesses anti-inflammatory and mucolutic properties. As such, it effectively treats allergic rhinitis, acute and chronic rhinitis, perennial rhinitis, acute and chronic sinusitis, sinus headaches, frontal headaches, otitis media, allergic asthma, common cold and influenza.

Note: Do not use this formula unless you are experiencing chronic congestion with colored mucus. As this is a drying formula, continued use after congestion and mucus are resolved can dry out the mucus membranes.

Bi Yan Ning (Calm the Nose and Throat) treats allergies, common cold and nasal or sinus congestion. It does this by dispersing wind from the nasal passages, clearing heat, expelling toxins, transforming phlegm and unblocking the nose.

Bi Yan Ning (also spelled Bi Ye Ning), is a formula comprised of different herbs including: cang er zi (xanthium), xin yi hua (magnolia flower), zhu dan zhi (pig bile), e bu shi cao (centipeda), chan tui (cicada shell), huo xiang (agastache), bing pian (borneol), huang qin (scute), dang gui (Chinese angelica), and huang qi (estragalus).

This herbal formula is indicated for wind-heat obstructing the nasal passages with congealing of the nasal fluids. If this formula is for you, you would be experiencing nasal congestion, swollen and inflamed mucus membranes, thick yellow nasal mucus, purulent malodorous mucus, watery mucus, sneezing, reduction or loss of sense of smell, nasal voice, sinus congestion and pain, frontal or sinus headache, dizziness, red itchy eyes, excessive tearing. Your tongue color would be the normal pink to red with a yellow coating.

In terms of specific ‘allopathic’ designations, Bi Yan Pian posses anti-inflammatory, mucolytic and antibacterial properties. As such, it effectively treats allergic rhinitis, acute and chronic rhinitis, perennial rhinitis, acute and chronic sinusitis, sinus headaches, frontal headaches, upper respiratory tract infection, common cold and influenza.

Note: While this formula is similar to Pe Min Kan Wan it is cooler to the body and slightly stronger. Do not use this formula unless you are experiencing chronic congestion with colored mucus. As this is a drying formula, continued use after congestion and mucus are resolved can dry out the mucus membranes.

Xin Yi San (Magnolia Flower Teapills) treats allergies, common cold and nasal or sinus congestion. It does this by dispelling wind-cold, eliminating dampness, unblocking the nose and alleviating pain.

Xin Yi San is a formula comprised of different herbs, including: xin yi hua (magnolia flower), bai zhu (atractylodes), fang feng (siler), sheng ma (cimicifuga), mu tong (akebia), chuan xiong (cnidium), xi xin (asarum), gao ben (ligusticum), gan cao (licorice), and qiang huo (notopterygium).

This herbal formula is indicated for wind-cold invasion attacking the head. If this formula is for you, you would be experiencing nasal and sinus congestion, nasal or sinus pain, copious clear nasal discharge, post-nasal drip, sneezing, sinus or frontal headache, stiff and achy neck and upper back, fatigue, mental cloudiness and loss of sense of smell. Your tongue color would be the normal pink color with a thin white coating.

In terms of specific ‘allopathic’ designations, Xin Yi San posses diaphoretic, anti-inflammatory and analgesic properties. As such, it effectively treats acute and chronic sinusitis, allergic rhinitis, acute and chronic rhinitis, sinus headaches, frontal headaches, upper respiratory tract infection, common cold and influenza.

Note: There are no reported contraindications with use of this formula.

I hope this brief article on Chinese herbals for allergies helps you to 1) find the correct formula for your issues, and 2) understand that taking a pattern-specific approach is better than the “shotgun” approach of the generic pharma allergy medications or herbal products advertised for “allergies” in general.

It is not necessary for you to experience ALL of the above symptoms within a grouping, but the group that most completely describes the overall pattern of what you are experiencing with your allergies, indicates the formula that is best applied.

It is commonly observed within TCM clinics and hospitals that the long-term result for treating allergies is strengthened with the addition of acupuncture sessions. Additionally, it is highly advised to refrain from consuming any animal milk product during allergy season, especially when infection is present.

These formulas are among the 400 common “Chinese patent herbal formulas” sold all over the world and used for centuries in Asia. They are currently manufactured in pharmaceutical or nutraceutical laboratories that are inspected buy the World Health Organization. As such, the products sold in the United States are GMP Certified and safe A simple online search of these names will bring up a number of sites selling these products. Or you could visit a Chinatown near you.

—Dr. Mark Wiley

Dr. Mark Wiley

is an internationally renowned mind-body health practitioner, author, motivational speaker and teacher. He holds doctorates in both Oriental and alternative medicine, has done research in eight countries and has developed a model of health and wellness grounded in a self-directed, self-cure approach. The Wiley Method provides a revolutionary way of providing recovery and prevention of chronic pain, illness and disease. Grab your FREE COPY of Dr. Mark Wiley's "The 3 Secrets to Optimal Health" HERE.

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  • Jackie Archer

    I have not had allergy or sinus problems since I learned to eat a fresh raw jalapeno pepper at the first sign or symptom. One a day will keep colds, etc. away.

  • TIME

    Doc Mark,
    I have to say my allergies are not getting better with age. I have done just about everything to reduce them, yet nothing has worked.
    I think that some of us just are doomed to have these special fun periods of time no matter what we do.

    • Dr. Mark Wiley

      You know, that may be an issue for some regarding various things. Most health issues do not happen all at once; they evolve over time. And over the course of a life, decade after decade passes and people are diminishing many of their essential functions. Immune systems are weakened to a point where people in their senior years catch cold very easily, or are afflicted with allergies. At the very least, some symptomatic relief can be had with the formulas shared in this article.

      Wishing you great health!

  • Penni Eads

    When I was a kid, I had allergies, hay fever, and asthma. I was hospitalized at age 6 with bronchial pneumonia. I took allergy shots, allergy meds, including inhalers, and cortisone shots and had several reactions at times. My mom stopped the cortisone shots at age 12. I began cleansing with enemas, fiber colon cleanses(psyllium, flaxseed, etc), drinking sunrider Chinese whole food concentrates like calli and fortune delight and began eating sunrider whole food herbs called quinary and nuplus that nourish the systems of the body, and I have no longer had asthma or hay fever. I rarely get an allergic reaction that causes my eyes to itch and swell, but it usually lasts only a few days, since I will eat the food herbs that nourish me back to balance! Nutrition really works!

  • David W Serfass

    I have had allergies for 48 years now, approximately since age 2. They were always bad and began getting worse every year starting about age 30. I don’t like taking meds for my allergies. I made several diet and lifestyle changes which significantly reversed this trend, almost to the point of eliminating them completely. Specifically, I take one to two teaspoons of LOCAL honey, light and dark once a day (each), I take two or three Omega 3 fish oil tablets daily, I make it a point to get outside for a 45 to 60 minute walk DAILY all year (this exposes you to allergens gradually as they emerge and keeps you exposed throughout the year) and I joined a gym and work out two to three times a week (strength training and stretching). Doing this over a period of 2-3 years my allergies (and energy) significantly improved every year. There is real benefit to exercise and nutrition. I am considering the Chinese supplements because I would like to get to the point where I can keep my windows open in the spring (my worst allergy season).

    • Dr. Mark Wiley

      Thank you for sharing your story with us, David. It is inspirational, showing how self-directed efforts based in natural ideas is part of our overall wellness solution! Keep it up!!

    • coal miner


      Here is some steps that help against allergies.…/managing-springtime-allergies-the-natural-way · Cached page

  • Kirby Allan

    One big problem in America is there are too many so called leaders in control of all our governments, U.S., state,county and city that deals all the cards all the time. The sadt part is it’s their game and “we the people” play their game and no one ever cuts the deck. It’s worse than Las Vegas where we only lose our money. It’s folly to believe that these parasitic politicians will ever deal us a good card.

    Isn’t it about time “we the people” start dealing our own cards?

  • Kirby Allan

    We must all be aware of the fact that our one philosophy health care system also always deals the cards all the time. It is a one philosophy health care system,(without competition),It is a “monopoly” pure and simple.

    The people have and have had for centuries the right to the freedom of choice yet we are denied that right to free choice in health care.

    The “choice” is in treatments. If we have cancer, for instance, we can go to hundreds of allopathic doctors and they will all treat us with chemotherapy/radiation that kills the good cells along with the bad. These barbaric kind of treatments all but destroys the body’s natural immune system and there’s little hope for the patient’s recovery.

    Now, the good news. there are a lot of you on this site who are very intelligent, a lot more than I. You are all good writers and I’m not However I want to explain the best way I can to you how inportant it is to provide competition for our failing and out dated health care system.

    There’s copies of results from research done on all kinds of accidental deaths circulating around. One was shocking. when it came to doctors and guns the research concluded this: “When we go to a doctor we are nine thousand,(9,000),times more apt to be killed by an accident from a doctor than by a gun.”

    Competition is and will always be the best regulator that was ever devised. It’s what made America the mose powerful and most wealthy nation on earth.

    It’s the people that benefits from competition.

    a competitor for our allopoathic, (main stream),health care system and their doctors must be highly scientific to be able to lock horns in a competetive battle to level the playing field . There exists, today, that special competitor. Nextletter will elaborate.

  • Kirby Allan

    Most have heard about “Homeopathy and Homeopathic medicaments.” But little know that there are hundreds of hundreds of doctors in Germany that are accredited/longtime experienced Homeopathic doctors that would love to come to America and teach, but this hasn’t happened.

    One Homeopathic doctor, Friedrich Plog became so dedicated to his profession he dared to venture into America in the 80′s choosing Arizona and following up on a flyer that was distributed from Arizona through Germany and it’s colleges advertising for German doctors to come to Arizona and teach in their private school of Homeopathy. By the time dr. Plog arrived the school. The school had been knocked out by politics. Dr. Plog set up his clinic in Mesa Arizona.

    My wife being ‘french born like others here liked to talk french to others here and got introduced to another French lady that tutned out to be Dr. Plog’s wife.

    Two months prior I was diagnosed as haveing lymphatic cancer, (Hodgkins disease) by an allopathic doctor who wanted me to take chemotherapy and radiation treatments.

    I knew enough to know that when one messes with the natural immune system there’s little chance to survive no matter what reatments so I refused. I opted to, instead, go on a fresh/live juice diet and take my chances.

    I had stayed on that diet for two months getting frustrated and that’s when I met Dr. Plog. We visited each other namy times before the doctor broke his silence asking me why I hadn’t eaten when we went out for dinner.

    I was playing with a tiny salad ar a resturant when he said; “You may as well be eating colored newspapers.” I asked why and he said: Crush up a newspaper, put in your bowl, put green coloring and thousand island dressing on it and you get the same message.” He then asked that question.

    I told him my story and he felt under my ear and told me to come to his clinic tomorrow and he would fix me up.

    I had gotten rid of the swelling on my nodes, through juicing, but couldn’t get rid of the soreness.

    When Doctor Plog diagnosed me he jumped up and down saying your liver is not swollen, your spleen is not swollen and other body parts not swollen. He added: what ever you’ve been doing is great and followed, but it’s not enough. I was completely healed with one $42.00 treatment.

    He explsined it would have normally taken you up to ten treatments had you not completely detoxified your body for his treatments to heal.

    The German Homeopathic practioners uses no drugs, no long hospital stays, no expensive machinery, no things to shove in you or up you and here’s the clicker:

    (“They make and inject the mixed medicaments tested, on the spot, for each individual patient, on an individual basis and for their own ailment problem as part of their treatment.”)

    This is the underlying reason we don’t have this second philosophy in America. Your imagination will tell you what this would do to the drug industry.

    Sinthetically made drugs goes against the body. That’s why they have so many side effects.

    German Styls Homeopathy uses animal, vegetable,mineral and other natural ingredients that “Goes” with the body.

    German Homeopathic Doctors don’t heal ailments they build up ones natural immune system so powerfully the body heals itself.

    So you see why it’s the best and only alternative health care system being the opposite of the allopathics

    There is much more to this story one being I have the only cassette tape in existance of verbage between singer/Actor burl Ives and Dostor Plog explaining how Burl was healed completely of his, so called, incurable cripppling arthitis in the 80′s I will galdly share with others that are active in pursuing this endeavor.

    More if interested. The whole story is fasenating.

    • Dale

      I am a firm believer in Homeopathic. Ever hear of Dr. Ber in Scottsdale, AZ? Please tell me more about Dr. Plog. Is he in Germany or America now? Obama signed a bill just recently taking control over all of medical. I don’t like it at all. Please tell me about Burl Ives’s healing from Arthritis. I was a fan of his. Thank you. ( Mrs.) Dale Taylor.

    • Kathy

      I firmly believe that doctors are brainwashed in medical school to accept the idea that only Big Pharma knows what’s best for us. That’s why they only give us drugs when we get sick. It’s also safe to say that Big Pharma doesn’t make money by making people well, but they get filthy rich by keeping us sick. Please share your knowledge of how to beat arthritis.

  • Kirby Allan

    “Here is a partial list.”

    * 80% of asthmatics in America are misdiagnosed. They do not have asthma. The symptoms are so close most allopathic doctors don’t know. What they have can be healed with one effective treatment.

    * Healthy body cells communicate with each other.

    * Have proven all humans have a built in “Sender” and a “Receiver” and have proved to communicate up to 50 feet, but they suspect much further.

    * There are three things we don’t get enough of that causes all illness and creates deadly body poisons.

    * The three things are WATER,FIBER and vitamin “C.” For some reason the body manufactures every vitamin we need except “C” that we must take every day.

    * German Homeopathic doctors do not profess to “Cure” there’s no such as cure because when symptoms occur it’s already too late, one can only become “Symptom Free” with proper and effective treatments.

    * When heated to 130 degrees all natural foods such as veggies etc. all life giving forces are dead.

    * What the body cells really need is “Light” we get this from eating “Live” foods, the sun the skin good water.

    * When we wear sunglasses we rob our body cells of that light.

    * Before we eat look at our plate and we first ask ourselves “What has light in this food?”

    * Most of will find no light that means we are eating “Dead” food trying to stay alive.

    ” Most humans have abandoned God’s laws in favor of following man’s laws.

    * Most eat for taste instead of the needed “fuel” our body craves for proper functening.

    * Eating dead foods is a habit. One that plugs up our body organs keeping them from functioning propely.

    * Once treated and healed of an ailment we must “Change The Inviroment Of our body” Our lifestyle, especially in eating, was the cause of the ailment in the first place. continued;

  • CHawkbrown

    Try oil of wild oregano. My daughter had allergies for 30 years
    and it helped her. I use it too.


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