Traditional Research | Immune Adapt (a Fu Zheng Formula)

Astragalus root (A. membranaceus)*

Strengthens the immune reservoir and Wei Qi.  It is a superior adaptogen used for rebuilding depleted endocrine/immune activity.  It is useful for chronic lung infections, as part of a cancer protocol and for Chronic Fatigue Syndrome.  Astragalus is also effective for lowering blood sugar levels, inhibiting ulcers, protecting the heart from Coxsackie B virus and strengthening the upright qi, making it useful for organ prolapse.

Schisandra berry/Wu Wei Zi (Schisandra chinensis)*

Translates as Five Flavor Fruit, this herb is a powerful adaptogen strengthening hypothamic/adrenal funciton and normalizing nervous system and immune activity. Schisandra also acts as a mild, non habit forming stimulant and an anti-hepatotoxin.

Eleuthero root (Eleutherococcus senticosis)*

An excellent adaptogen, this herb normalizes blood pressure and immune activity, reduces fatigue, stress, and depression, reduces atherosclerosis.  It is frequently used especially by athletes to increase performance.

Licorice root (Glycyrrhiza glabra or G. uralensis)*

Has an ancient history of use in China and the Middle East.  This intensly sweet root is an adaptogen, demulcent, expectorant, pectoral, antiviral and antidepressant.  Licorice strengthens endocrine function, especially the adrenals, ovaries, Isles of Langerhans and hypothalamus making it useful for chronic fatigue syndrome menopause, hypoglycemia and autoimmune disease.  The demulcent action heals mucus membrane tissue especially the stomach (ulcers), large and small intestine (IBS) and lung (dry, irritated cough).  Excessive use of Licorice can elevate blood pressure. 

Reishi mushroom (G. lucidum, G. sinensis)*

Indicated for immune hypo (cancer, AIDS, Chronic Fatigue) or hyper functioning (Lupus, Rheumatoid Arthritis, Crohn's Disease, and Ankylosing Spondylitis).  Reishi is an active antihepatotoxin as well as a cardiotonic, antioxidant and nervine.

Dang Shen root (Codonopsis spp.)*

An excellent mild adaptogen often used in China instead of the more expensive Ginseng.  It tonifies Qi and lowers blood pressure by dilating blood vessels.  Codonopsis treats anemia by increasing erythrocytes and hemoglobin levels.  In Chinese medicine it is often used to treat deficient or collapsed spleen qi which manifests as conditions such as diarrhea, fatigue, hemorrhoids, or prolapsed uterus and for wasting and thirsting diseases.  It is also used for deficient energy in the lung, and stimulates all levels of the immune system.

Ligustrum dried fruit (Ligustrum lucidum)*

Ligustrum berries are used as a tonic for the Chinese kidney and liver.  It stimulates immune activity especially increasing white blood cell count depleted by chemotherapy or radiation (leukopenia).

Bai Zhu Atractylodes root(Atractylodes macrocephalae)*

Atractylodes tonifies the middle jiao (burner) and dries excessive dampness caused by edema, diarrhea, vomiting or other fluid retention. Laboratory studies with human cancer cells demonstrate that Bai Zhu is effective in inducing apoptosis (cell death) in liver cancer and leukemia cells


Chang, H. M and But, P. P.  Pharmacology and Applications of Chinese Materia Medica, World Scientific, 1986

Dharmananda, S.  Chinese Herbal Therapies for Immune Disorders, Portland, OR, 1991

Enger, B. and Long. E. [Ed.]  AIDS, Immunity and Chinese Medicine, Long Beach, CA, 1989

Herbal Therapeutics Research Library, David Winston (RH) AHG

©2012 Herbal Therapeutics Research Library. All rights reserved

*Disclaimer: The information on historical, ethnobotanical and phytotherapeutic uses of herbs and traditional formulas contained herein is based on the experience and research of the author. It is not intended as a substitute for consulting with your physician or other health care provider. Any attempt to diagnose and treat an illness should be done under the direction of a health care professional. The publisher and author are not responsible for any adverse effects or consequences resulting from the use of any of the information discussed. Should you have any questions concerning the appropriateness of any preparation mentioned, the author strongly suggests consulting a professional health care advisor.