1. Longevity

Several scientific studies confirm the mythical claim that He Shou Wu stimulates the body to produce longevity-promoting substances. The most powerful substance it has been shown to stimulate is superoxide dismutase, the most potent antioxidant and free radical scavenger found in the human body. Numerous studiesfound a correlation between superoxide dismutase and an extended lifespan. This antioxidant also inhibits the MAO-B enzymes, a family of enzymes which binds to the outer membrane of mitochondria. This process combats oxidative stress and has been shown to result in powerful health benefits and life-extension.

2. Blood Tonifier 

Tonification is a Traditional Chinese Medicine term which refers to the strengthening of a certain part or element of the body. He Shou Wu has been demonstrated to help strengthen the membranes of red blood cells and also promote their growth. HoneyColony’s Equilibrium includes He Shou Wu in their “Energy Formula” due to its positive effect on blood circulation. There is a strong correlation between proper circulation and healthy energy levels.

Chinese legend of Neng Si, a man with a weak constitution who, after taking a large dose of He Shou Wu for several years, experienced a radical shift towards vitality, including his full head of gray hair turning back to black. Thus, the herb was named “He Shou Wu” — which literally translates to “Old Black Haired.”

3. Hair Revitalizer

 In Traditional Chinese Medicine, hair is the reflection of the state of a person’s blood, liver and kidney. Which is why many people believe He Shou Wu, with its power to increase blood circulation and stimulation of red blood cells, can help turn gray hair back to its original color.

Studies have found He Shou Wu to contain Radix Polygoni Multiflori (RPM). Prepared RPM exerts hypolipidemic effects. Hypolipidemic agents can lower high levels of fats (lipids), such as cholesterol, in the blood, improving the essence of the blood and nourishing the liver and kidneys. They have also been shown to have revitalizing abilities, such as blackening the hair and beard and strengthening the muscles and bones. RPM exerts its hypolipidemic effects primarily by targeting the gastrointestinal tract, thus inhibiting the absorption of cholesterol.

However, this doesn’t mean everyone with greying hair can find a miracle in He Shou Wu. According to acupuncturist and naturopath, Talia Mansdorf, “When there is a blood deficiency, hair can turn gray because it’s malnourished. However, in Chinese Medicine, you can have three people with the same symptoms, but very different issues. There can be several issues at the root of hair turning gray. But if your graying hair doesn’t stem from blood deficiency, He Shou Wu will not be of any help. You’ll need a full diagnosis to determine what’s the real issue at state.”

4. Protection From Disease

An impressive amount of pharmacological studies show strong evidence for He Shou Wu’s treatment of various medical conditions and diseases such as liver injury, cancer, diabetes, alopecia, atherosclerosis, and even neurodegenerative diseases. 

This is due, in part, to He Shou Wu’s anti-inflammatory properties; it has been shown to inhibit the expression of some of the most prominent pro-inflammatory signaling factors in the body. 

Another benefit of He Shou Wu’s stimulation of superoxide dismutase (SOD) activity is this free radical scavenger kills harmful oxygen molecules in cells which may have caused damage to tissues. By taking He Shou Wu every day, you are increasing your antioxidant levels and protecting yourself from disease.


5. Lowered Stress Levels

He Shou Wu is considered to be an “adaptogen”, which is an herb that works with your body to create balance and harmony, compared to “mimetic” herbs which replace or enhance a certain function. 

According to Mansdorf, “He Shou Wu is a yin herb, which means it correlates to and encourages feminine/receptive energy. Many people feel calmer and more balanced both in mind and body with this herb.”

Traditional Chinese Medicine also relates how He Shou Wu can stimulate our intuitive abilities, inspiring spiritual awareness, creativity, and heightened intuitive guidance.