Why Asian Dandelion is Called Fishman’s Herb in Chinese?

August 2, 2011 Trisha Han Oriental Herbal Medicine

The 16-year-old daughter of a government official in ancient China was suffering from mastitis, with a triangular lump underneath her left breast. She was in pain and very worried, but she dared not tell anyone about it, because deep down inside she felt ashamed. But her maid eventually noticed her illness and disclosed it to her father, pleading with him to hire a doctor.

Inquiring into his daughter’s condition the official became angry as he suspected that his daughter must have done something immoral to have caused this. He rushed to his daughter’s room and slapped her in the face. “How could you do such a shameful thing? You are a disgrace to your family,” shouted the father. The maid insisted that his daughter had never gone out alone and could not have possibly done anything immoral. The father wouldn’t listen. The daughter ran away from home that night out of shame and desperation.

She went to the river bank and thinking that no one would be around at that hour to see her, quickly jumped into the river in an attempt to commit suicide. A fisherman was fishing from a rowboat nearby with his 16-year-old daughter. When they heard that splash, the fisherman’s daughter instantly jumped into the river to save her. Once they were both on board the fisherman was surprised to see that the girl was just about the same age as his daughter.

The fisherman’s daughter changed the girl’s clothes and in the process discovered the swelling in the young lady’s left breast. She immediately understood the reason for her attempted suicide. Telling her father about it the fisherman replied, “We will go dig some [healing] plants for her breast first thing in the morning.”

The plant was a perennial herb, with white milky juice in it, yellowish flowers and straight but fleshy stem and thick roots. They found the plants along the roadside not far from the river. They dug out a few plants that weighed about 100g, washed them clean and boiled them in water. Then they told the girl to drink the liquid. In the meantime they crushed some of the plants and applied them to her breast.

Hearing of her whereabouts and their daughter’s attempted suicide the official and his wife, greatly worried and deeply regretful, rushed to see the fisherman and to take their daughter home.

Their daughter, grateful and in tears, said good-bye to the fisherman and his daughter and went home with her parents, bringing a bunch of the plants with her. Before she left, the fisherman kept reminding her to continue using and applying the herb for her illness.

After she had recovered she told her maid to plant the herb in their garden. So that she would always remember the fisherman, she named the plant after him; not knowing his name she called it “Fisherman’s Herb.”

The Chinese use Asian dandelion to treat such symptoms by decocting 50g dandelion in two glasses of water ( medium size glass) until the water is reduced by half, then they strain and drink the liquid once daily.

In the treatment of eye disorders, take a cotton ball soaked in the fluid and gently press it on the closed eyelid for about half an hour daily. Unlike most Chinese herbs, when Asian dandelion is used to treat inflammatory diseases, both internal and external methods should be applied – whether in treating mastitis, tonsillitis, or mumps.

More information, Asian dandelion is effective to treat

1. indigestion and chronic constipation
2.mastitis prior to becoming infected, by both ingestion and external applications simultaneously,
3.early stages of snake and insect bites prior to infection, and
4. promoting urination in treating acute urination disturbances, by a decoction of as much as 35-70g of fresh dandelion; smaller quantities produce little or no effect.

Action:  to clear up heat, counteract toxic effects, disperse swelling and heal carbuncles.


chronic constipationdisperse swellingeye disordersherbal medicineindigestioninsect bitesmastitismumpstonsillitis

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