Chinese herbal medicine has long hailed the dodder seed as a superior herb used in tonics. Semen Cuscutae is a Jing & Chi Tonic especially used for sperm health and as an anti-inflammatory.
It is a seed picked from Cuscuta, a parasitic plant found in both temperate and tropical regions throughout the world. Cuscuta plants are thin-stemmed and have no visible leaves and roots. They use their vine-like stems to attach themselves to a host and draw nourishment.
The dodder seeds produced are located near the soil surface. These are valued primarily as a vitality tonic. Moreover, the Tu Si Zi seed is one of the seven main ingredients of the famed Ming Dynasty’s ‘Seven Treasures’ formula, which rejuvenates the body and prevents aging.
Dodder seed comes from a plant species under genus Cuscuta. Alternately, its common names include Semen Cuscutae, atermoyer, beggarweed, devil’s guts, and Chinese dodder. In mandarin, the dodder seed is tusizi.
Semen Cuscutae is ideal for men and women alike since it is a reproductive health promoter. It is popular for its anti-aging properties and is for people who wish to improve their vitality and immune systems. The seed is also useful for people afflicted with urogenital ailments, especially those with kidney problems.
Health Benefits of Dodder Seed
- Tonifies the kidneys
- Increases energy
- Slows aging
- Supports male reproductive system and sperm motility
- Strengthens sexual functions
- Improves urogenital functions
- Supports liver function
- Treats spleen disorders
- Effective as treatment for dermatitis
In modern Chinese medicine, dodder seed rejuvenates the kidneys. It is effective in relieving symptoms of kidney and liver deficiencies such as fatigue, dizziness, chronic lower back pain, and weak bones. In bones, studies show that Semen Cuscutae enhances density and improves cartilage repair. Since it supports the kidney and its symptoms of deficiency, many take dodder seed to treat urinary problems.
It is also popular as an energy enhancer, often marketed as a reproductive health tonic that increases fertility. Dodder seed treats prostate disorders such as prostatitis, abnormal sperm count, and premature ejaculation in men, as well as gynecological disorders in women. The seeds contain flavonoids, which offer hormone-like protection to human sperm. Flavones found in the herb were discovered to reverse the reduction of testosterone level and the expression of androgen receptor gene in kidney-yang deficient mice.
Clinical experiments found that dodder seed enhances the immune system. The seed, which contains polysaccharide, effectively improves immunity. It increases thymus and spleen weight, both of which are crucial to proper immune response.
The anti-aging effects of dodder seed are also historically noted. As one of the components of Seven Treasures formula, Semen Cuscutae promotes longevity and youthful skin. Current studies also suggest that dodder seed increases lifespan.
While enhancing libido, reproductive vitality and promoting longevity and sexual wellness (especially when mixed with panax ginseng), the seed also revitalizes spleen and kidney function and overall well-being. The enhanced potency one can get from the small dodder seed makes it truly remarkable.
A recent clinical trial shows that whey protein mixed with dodder seed extract is effective against dermatitis.
While traditional Chinese, Japanese and Iranian Medicine make much use of the dodder seed in alternative health remedies, especially for sexual potency, there is very little scientific evidence to back up many of these claims. More studies and clinical trials are needed.
We posted links to some herbal extracts and powder supplements that you might be interested in. Many of them are mixed with ginseng or other tonic herbs to provide quite a health boost. Please do your own research and read supplement product labels carefully and test until you have discovered a good daily dosage schedule of Semen Cuscutae for your particular needs.