Thursday, October 20, 2011

Traditional Chinese Decoction for Women's Well-Being

Last month, my Mom-in-Law learned that I always suffer from gruesome menstrual abdominal pains when my period comes. She was very concerned and said that this is no good. Soon, she went to a TCM shop in the neighborhood and brought home some Bai Feng Wan capsules plus few packs of Chinese herbs for women's well-being. She planned to make me some decoction from those Chinese herbs to alleviate my monthly problems. 

When my period was over, she indeed made the decoction, named Ba Zhen Tang (八珍汤), for me. She mentions that this decoction, if consumed regularly, is very good for women mainly because it enriches blood, promotes blood circulation, regulates menses, treats pale and dull complexion *some people think I'm too pale*, reduces menstrual cramps, eliminates back/muscle pains during menstruation and even strengthens the womb (to conceive easily). This decoction is best taken twice every month.

Ba Zhen Tang (八珍汤) that my Mom-in-Law prepared for me.

Growing up, my Mom or Grandmas never really made me drink such boiled Chinese herbal soups. I hate drinking soups in general; as such, whenever my Mom cooked soupy things back home, I tend to avoid drinking them. Now that I don't really drink normal soups, I thought I would never have to drink Chinese herbal soups in million years! I mean, I planned to find reasons not to drink them so frequently. 

Few months ago, my Mom-in-Law actually prepared this Ba Zhen Tang decoction for the women in our house and asked me to try. However, after I smelled the strong aroma of this decoction, I ran away from the kitchen and came up with 1001 excuses to skip drinking this. In the end, with the help of my husband, I only managed to drink two sips of it. That's it. Two sips. No more. She understood.

Now that I am married and my next big thing in mind after being married is procreation; I have to reconsider my resistance in consuming decoction. I need to take my Mom-in-Law's advice seriously to start taking care of myself well so I can get pregnant soon, have a smooth pregnancy and deliver a healthy baby (as per written in the #1 item of my bucket list).

Back to my attempts in drinking Ba Zhen Tang decoction, today is my second time in consuming this decoction this month. Although it's already my second attempt in finishing this decoction, I was still struggling in swallowing this smelly decoction into my stomach. Honestly, I once got really scared of this decoction because it's black, smells horribly strong (I'm afraid), tastes bitter and salty and has a tad of oily sensation from the boiled chicken. This decoction was just plain weird to me.

No, this is not a bowl of sumptuous Rawon.

This decoction made me develop a weird system to finish it too. I always drink this decoction in several big gulps. When I drink this, I always stand next to the kitchen sink so I can pour the decoction into the drain because after two big gulps, I literally need to rinse my mouth with a lot of tap water to eliminate the strong smell from my mouth and wash my face with water (seriously!) before I continue drinking another two big gulps. I repeat these methods until I finish the entire decoction from the cooking pot. As a result, my face is always all wet after I finish drinking the whole decoction.

For someone who doesn't really fancy drinking boiled Chinese herbal drinks/soups, finishing a pot of decoction is really a laboring attempt. But again, since I might need this decoction to improve my well-being, I have not much options but to slowly learn accepting it into my body, yes?


  1. I have this before but for a short while but cannot remember how much it worked for me.

  2. haha thats nice of u to have someone cook for you, especially your inlaw!

  3. Hi Nava and Brocade Blue,

    Thanks for commenting.

    Nava - this doesn't work? it takes a lot of efforts to make and drink this.. quite a waste if it's fruitless, huh?

    Brocade - yeah, My Mom-in-Law cooks and prepares this kind of soups and decoctions for us!

  4. does this help people with irregular flow? like sometimes heavy and sometimes light.

  5. Hi V,

    Not sure about the answer of your question because this is only my first month trying this decoction... But it claims to help women's various menstruation problems. Or you might want to check with a doctor perhaps - Just for consultation? Alternatively, try consuming this decoction too so we both can compare the results? :D

  6. Hi Christine,

    Beautiful blog and congratulations on the blog award (we were in Celes's BIB last April).

    I'm such a huge beleiver in herbal remedies and took a course in TCM, but I can totally relate to not wanting to actually try the scary soups and feeling torn between whether it will work and is worth it versus thinking it's gross and may not work at all!

    Please let us know if it works! :)


  7. Hi Christina,

    Yes! I still remember you from BIB! I'm very happy to reconnect with you again here.

    Sure, sure. I will keep you updated on the effects of this decoction sooner or later, although I'm positive that it takes months of regular consumption to feel the good effects of it.


  8. i wish to try this for my period.
    can you please help me on where i can buy the herbs and how to cook them into a soup?
    i don't have a mom (passed away when i was young) and no other female relatives (all already emigrated to US/Canada/Australia).
    please i hope you can help me. thank you.

    1. Hi Betty,

      You can just go to your local TCM shop and ask for Ba Zhen Tang herbs. Usually, all the herbs for this soup already in one pack and ready to be slow cooked with chicken. I am not so sure on the details in preparing this soup because my MIL prepared this for me. Before this, I hardly took any Chinese decoction soups.

      Good luck.




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