A small tree native to Korea and other parts of Asia, the dogwood is popular as an ornamental tree to most. To herbalists, however, it is distinguished for its bright and edible dogwood fruit, commonly referred to as Kousa berries, cornus fruit and asiatic cornelian cherry.
Historically, it was a commonly used herb in the East as a mild but invigorating tonic. In traditional Chinese medicine (TCM), dogwood fruit is associated with improving kidney and liver health. As a tonic, the Japanese cornel fruit energizes the body and acts as a stabilizer for body fluids.
Dogwood fruit, or Asiatic cornelian cherry fruit, is from the Japanese dogwood scientifically named Cornus kousa. Other names for the tree include Japanese cornelian cherry, Korean dogwood, Chinese dogwood, strawberry dog wood tree, and kousa dogwood. It is called shanzhuyu in pinyin Chinese.
Dogwood fruit is ideal for people with liver and kidney deficiencies. People who experience leakage of fluids and excessive sweating may also take dogwood fruit.
In general, dogwood fruit astringes the essence. It means that it binds the body and addresses disorders concerning body fluids in particular. However, it is also helpful to other disorders of the body.
Health Benefits of Dogwood Fruit (Kousa, Cornus Berry)
- Stabilizes kidneys
- Tonifies liver
- Astringes essence
- Relieves frequent urination and incontinence
- Treats excessive sweating
- Stops bleeding
- Maintains urogenital health
- Controls blood disorders mellitus
- Acts as anti-inflammatory agent
- Serves as analgesic pain-reliever
Traditional Chinese medicine uses dogwood fruit to stabilize and tonify the kidney and liver. The Kousa fruit treats symptoms of weak kidney such as dizziness, body pain, and impotence. It nourishes the kidney of its deficiencies and restores the organ to revitalize its essence. As such, the cornus fruit maintains general urogenital health.
Recent studies show that the botanical iridoids cornus contains are a natural anti-inflammatory useful against diseases like inflammatory bowel syndrome, Alzheimer’s, arthritis, etc. It’s always promising to find an healthy all-natural holistic alternative to anti-inflammatory drugs.
Another significant nutrition benefit of the dogwood fruit is its ability to bind the essence. Chinese traditional medicine believes that disproportionate discharge of body fluids is a result of a non-stabilized constitution. Thus, disorders in which the body excessively discharges bodily fluids are treated with dogwood fruit which astringes the essence. The Kousa fruit is effective in treating excessive sweating, diarrhea, and urinary incontinence
In addition, cornus also treats extreme shock. Shock occurs when qi, the life force of the body, diminishes. Dogwood fruit restores energy and astringes the body in the event of qi collapse.
In instances of excessive bleeding, dogwood fruit is also effective. Because of this, herbalists recommend the fruit to women with excessive uterine bleeding and extended menses. By strengthening the binding of the body, the Kousa fruit regulates the flow of blood and controls the bleeding.
A binding and energizing herb, the dogwood fruit is certainly a beneficial medicine for one’s daily life. For the treatment of blood disorders it can be used in conjunction with other herbs like safflower, Raw Astragalus, dodder seed, radix Rehmannia, Poria, Epimedium, earthworm, Angelica, zedoary white turmeric, and Schisandra.
It’s interesting in this video that the guy picks from the fruit from a tree in New York City’s Central Park since the Benthamia kousa and Cynoxylon kousa trees are natively Asiatic.
Please check back soon as I’m researching more health benefits of cornus berries and one of them is weight loss.