One of my all time favorite tonics is something called ‘shou wu chih‘ and it’s found in any chinese herbal shop or asian grocery. It looks like this:
The main ingredient in Shou Wu Chih is an herb called polygonum multiflorum. There’s a raw version of this herb that is sold in many herbal tablets for hair loss and graying.. However, traditionally, the raw herb is specially prepared by boiling it in a broth made primarily of black soy beans and then carefully dried. Many people don’t know this, but if you’re interested in this herb for it’s reported hair benefits, you want the prepared herb, not the raw version.
This herb is also called FoTi and He Shou Wu. You’ll probably encounter just as many spellings and pronunciations as you can imagine. You’ll also find countless variations of the legend that states a person who was gray haired and really old, ate this herb and became young again with dark black hair. I’m told in chinese, he shou wu means something like ‘mr. he black hair’.
Many people familiar with Chinese Medicine take this tonic everyday in hopes it will either darken their hair or keep it from turning gray. There is another benefit–this is also a very good overall tonic that is supposed to benefit the ‘Jing‘ if you are depleting your energy from stress or other activities (read my post on Jing-Chi-Shen). It’s purported to be a reliable youth tonic and powerful libido enhancer. I really like the taste of this one. There are two versions–one made with alcohol (it’s labeled ‘cooking wine’ in some stores) and one made with water.
I could go into all the other ingredients, but you could google it. There’s a wealth of information on it.
So, I’m not happy that I sprouted some gray hair on my temples and scattered throughout what used to be very black hair. I’m going to take this everyday and report on results after a few months. If I see some gray hair with dark roots coming in, I will claim this a success.
I’m thinking about picking this up as well:
Shou Wu Pian is a concentrated version of the single herb in a small black pill. It’s supposed to be taken for a long period of time to see results. I think I may add this to the regimen.
The products are in my amazon store on this page. Your best bet if you live near a metropolitan area or asian community is to buy it yourself. These products are inexpensive. Try my links or search the web for a better deal. In the future, I may setup a store. Let’s see…