Diuretic Herbs: Herbs for Urine Infection

Herbs primary pharmacodynamic effects of which are to eliminate excess water from the system by converting it to urine and facilitating its passage through the bladder and ureter are called “diuretics.” These drugs all increase the quantity of urine and frequency of urination. They are mostly of “sweet” and “plain” flavor and “neutral” energy.

Diuretic herbs are used against all symptoms of water retention, “damp-heat,” and “damp-cold” ailments. Common symptoms are difficult and/or painful urination, murky urine, painful joints and sinews, jaundice, sore and rashes on skin, excess phlegm, swelling and leukorrhoea.
Diuretics should be sparingly used by patients suffering from yin-deficiency or fluid deficiency.

SUBTERRANEAN FUNGUS

PORIA COCOS (Polyporaceae)

Natural distribution: Common world-wide

Parts used: Fungal body

Nature: Sweet; neutral

Affinity: Heart, lungs, spleen, stomach, kidneys

Effects: Diuretic; stomachic; digestive; sedative

Indications: Difficult urination; swelling; oppression in abdomen; lack of appetite; diarrhea; excess phlegm; coughing; insomnia; nervousness; heart palpitations

Dosage: 5-10 g

 

WATER PLANTAIN

ALISMA PLANTAGO-AQUATICA

Natural distribution: Northern China, northern Europe, North America

Parts used: Tubers

Nature: Sweet; cold

Affinity: Kidneys, gall bladder

Effects: Diuretic; refrigerant

Indications: Difficult urination; swelling; diarrhea; murky urine; leukorrhoea; excess phlegm

Dosage: 5-15 g

Remarks: Strong affinity for the female genitalia.

 

COMMON PLANTAIN

      PLANTAGO ASIATICA

Natural distribution: Common world-wide

Parts used: Seeds

Nature: Sweet; cold

Affinity: Liver, kidneys, small intestine, lungs

Effects: Diuretic; antidysenteric; expectorant; improves vision

Indications: Difficult or painful urination; diarrhea of “full-hot” type; aching and swollen eyes; blurry vision; coughs; excess phlegm

Dosage: 5-10 g

Remarks: This is the only diuretic that also tonifies the kidneys and appears in many aphrodisiac prescriptions; it also lowers blood pressure.

 

AKEBIA

       AKEBIA QUINATA

Natural distribution: Eastern China, Japan

Parts used: Stems

Nature: Bitter; cold

Affinity: Heart, lungs, small intestine, gall bladder

Effects: Diuretic; antiphlogistic; promotes lactation

Indications: Abscesses on tongue and mouth; insomnia; restlessness; dark and scanty urine; difficult and painful urination; pain and swelling in feet and legs; insufficient lactation

Dosage: 4-7 g

Remarks: The drug brewed together with pork knuckles is highly effective in promoting lactation; doses should not exceed 15 g. a day.

 

CHINESE MOXA WEED

      ARTEMISIA CAPILLARIS

Natural distribution: Northern China, Japan, Taiwan

Parts used: Stems and leaves of the young shoots

Nature: Bitter; neutral

Affinity: Spleen, stomach, liver, gall bladder

Effects: Diuretic; antipyretic

Indications: Jaundice due to “damp-heat” excess

Dosage: 10-15 g

Remarks: Effective remedy for jaundice; the drug also promotes secretion of bile when insufficient

 

JOB’S TEARS

        COIX LACRYMA-JOBI

Natural distribution: China, India, Africa, America.

Parts used: Seeds.

Nature: Sweet and plain; slightly cold.

Affinity: Spleen, stomach, lungs.

Effects: Diuretic; decongestant to lungs; digestive; refrigerant; anti-dysenteric.

Indications: Dark and scanty urine; swelling; painful joints, sinews and bones due to damp excess; ulcers in the stomach or lungs; diarrhea and dyspepsia due to damp injury to spleen.

Dosage: 10-30 g

Remarks: This is a common food item in China and Japan and contains 17 percent protein; the drug tonifies yang-energy; a liquor fermented from the seeds is effective in relieving rheumatic pains.

 

INDIAN CORN

              ZEA MAYS

Natural distribution: North America, China

Parts used: The pistils and stamens of the young flowers; the “corn-silk” of the mature ears.

Nature: Sweet; neutral

(affinity not determined; the herb was introduced to China from North America after Li Shizhen’s time)

Effects: Diuretic; reduces swelling.

Indications: Difficult and painful urination; swelling jaundice due to damp excess; liver inflammations.

Dosage: 15-30 g

Remarks: Research has shown this herb to be highly effective in dissolving gall stones; it also lowers blood pressure and blood sugar.

 

LONG YAM

    DIOSCOREA HYPOGLAUCA

Natural distribution: Sichuan, Henan, Hubei

Parts used: Roots Nature: Bitter; neutral.

Affinity: Liver, stomach.

Effects: Diuretic; eliminates “wind- damp” symptoms.

Indications: Murky urine; urethritis; leukorrhoea; pains due to “wind- damp” injury: stiff joints, sore muscles, pain and stiffness in lower back and knees.

Dosage: 10-15 g

 

TALC

HYDROUS MAGNESIUM SILICATE

Natural distribution: Common mineral

Parts used: Powder

Nature: Sweet; cold

Affinity: Stomach, gall bladder

Effects: Diuretic; antiphlogistic; refrigerant

Indications: Difficult urination; urethritis; diarrhea due to “damp- heat;” summer fevers and chills; oppression in chest.

Dosage: 5-10 g

Remarks: Applied externally, it has a drying effect on surface moisture; effective remedy for boils and prickly heat.

 

FARMERS’ TOBACCO

    MALVA VERTICILLATA

Natural distribution: Southern China, Indochina

Parts used: Seeds

Nature: Sweet; cold

Affinity: Large intestine, small intestine

Effects: Diuretic; promotes lactation

Indications: Difficult urination; urethritis; swelling; insufficient lacta- tion; swollen and painful breasts

Dosage: 5-15 g

Remarks: Promotes lactation and facilitates secretion in breast-feeding mothers

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