Common Yam Rhizome

Source Common Yam Rhizome is the dried rhizome ofDioscorea opposita Thunb. (Fam. Dioscoreaceae).

Producing Areas Shanxi, Henan, Hebei, etc

Properties Sweet, Neutral

Channels Spleen, Lung, Kidney


  • Invigorates the spleen and stomach
    For deficiency of spleen-energy and stomach-energy with poor appetite, fatigue, loose stools or chronic diarrhoea, leucorrhagia, etc.; for febrile diseases with consumption of body fluid or deficiency of spleen-yin and stomach-yin with poor appetite, thirst, dry tongue, diabetes, etc.
  • Invigorates the lungs
    For lung-deficiency with chronic cough or tuberculosis; for deficiency of lung and kidney with dyspnea and chronic cough.

Usage and Dosage

  • 15 – 30g is used in decoction for oral use, or 6-10g of powder is swallowed.
  • Crude Shanyao: For nourishingyin, promoting the production of the body fluid, stopping dyspnea and cough.
  • Stir-baked Shanyao: For strengthening the spleen, stopping diarrhoea, benefiting the kidney, preserving the essence.

Notes Not to be used for patient with domination of dampness and fullness in the middle energiser or with stagnation.

It is cylinder-shaped, slightly flat and curved, 15 – 45cm long, 1.5 – 6cm in diameter. The surface is yellowish white or light yellow with longitudinal grooves, wrinkles and marks of the fibrous roots. The two ends are not neat. It is heavy and solid. The broken surface is white and powdery. The flavour is weak and slightly sour, with a sticky feeling while chewing.

It is of even cylindrical shape, 8 – 16cm long, 1.5 – 3cm in diameter. The surface is white, smooth and more powdery.

Keep in an airtight container after drying. Protect from moths and mice.

Description of Quality Herb
The good herb should be solid, white and powdery.

Chinese Yam and Coix Congee

Effects Builds the spleen and benefits qi. It relieves a lack of vital energy in the spleen, loss of appetite, swelling of the abdomen associated with loose bowels, weakness of the limbs and related symptoms.

Chinese yam 30g, coix 30g, lotus root (pith removed) 15g, Chinese dates 10, millet 50 – 100g.

1.Rinse each of the above herbs.
2.Cook with the millet to make congee. When done, add sugar to taste and serve.

Tips for a Healthy Life
The bittergourd should be put in at the very last moment, so that it will not be cooked for too long. In this way, its vitamin content can be preserved.

Bittergourd with Chinese Yam and Wolfberry

Effects Builds the spleen, nourishes the kidneys and regulates blood sugar levels.

Bittergourd 2, Chinese yam 20g, wolfberry 20g, lean pork 50g, onions and ginger to taste.

1.Remove the seeds of the bittergourd and cut it into slices. Slice the onions and ginger.
2.Slice the pork and lightly fry with onions and gingers. When fragrant, add chicken stock, Chinese yam, wolfberry and season to taste.
3.Bring to a rolling boil and then simmer for 10 minutes. Add the bittergourd slices. When cooked, serve.