Pharmaceutical Latin: Semen Plantaginis
Common English: Plantago Seeds
Asian Plantain Seeds
Herbs that Drain Dampness (Diuretics)
Taste Temperature Entering Meridians Dosage
Tincture: 2-4ml
Actions Indications/Syndromes

Promotes urination and clears Damp-Heat

Damp-Heat, generally Damp-Heat in the Lower Jiao with edema, painful urinary dysfunction

Promotes urination to solidify the stool

Diarrhea due to Damp-Heat

Summerheat with Dampness

Clears Liver Heat and clears the eyes

Eye problems due to Liver and Kidney Yin Deficiency with dry eyes and diminished visual acuity

Heat in the Liver Channel with red, painful, swollen eyes and sensitivity to light

Clears the Lungs, expels Phlegm and stops coughing

Lung Heat induced cough with yellow copious Phlegm

  • Contraindicated for those with no Damp-Heat symptoms.
  • Use caution during pregnancy.
  • Use caution for those with spermatorrhea due to Kidney Deficiency (supplement with Kidney tonics).
  • Use caution for those with polyuria.
  • Use caution for those with constipation.
  • Use caution for those with exhausted Yang.
  • Use caution for those with exhaustion from overwork.
  • This herb may reduce the absorption of oral medications such as lithium. It may also inhibit the absorption of carbohydrates, requiring the adjustment of insulin dosage in diabetic patients.
  • Concurrent use with diuretics such as chlorothiazide, hydrochlorothiazide, furmoside (Lasix), bumetinide (Bumex) and torsemide (Demadex) may lead to increased elimination of water and/or electrolytes.

Rz. Alismatis
Ze Xie

Rz. Alismatis
Ze Xie
Fu Ling
Rz. Atractylodis Macrocephalae
Bai Zhu

Rx. Achyranthis Bidentatae
Niu Xi

Lin Syndrome, edema and distention.


Kidney Deficiency edema.

Rx. Ephedrae
Ma Huang

Spora Lygodii
Hai Jin Sha
Fr. Gardeniae
Zhi Zi

Rz. Imperatae
Bai Mao Gen

Edema in the limbs due to con-strained Lungs and Kidneys.

Acute edema in the face with External Wind Invasion signs.

Calms wheezing and coughs due to Phlegm Obstructing Lung Qi or externally contracted Wind blocking Lung Qi to generate Phlegm.

Dribbling, painful urination due to Lower Jiao Heat or Stone Lin.

Unblocks Lin, cools the Blood and stops bleeding for Damp-Heat clumping to cause scanty urination with pain and hematuria.

Edema in the lower limbs due to accumulation of water and Dampness.

Hb. Ecliptae
Han Lian Cao

Caul. Akebiae
Mu Tong
Hua Shi

Rz. Dioscoreae
Shan Yao
Cx. Phellodendri
Huang Bai

Blood Heat or Yin Deficiency with urinary difficulty, pain and hematuria.

Lin Syndrome.

Chronic vaginal discharge due to Spleen Deficiency with Damp-Heat.

Rz. Atractylodis
Cang Zhu

Rz. Atractylodis Macrocephalae
Bai Zhu
Sm. Coicis
Yi Yi Ren

Hb. Moslae
Xiang Ru
Hb. Pogostemonis/Agastaches
Huo Xiang

Damp-Heat vaginal discharge with Spleen Deficiency.

Summerheat with Dampness or Spleen Deficiency causing diarrhea with scanty urine.

Diarrhea from Summerheat with Dampness.

Rx. Rehmanniae Preparata
Shu Di Huang
Sm. Cuscutae
Tu Si Zi

Rx. Rehmanniae Preparata
Shu Di Huang
Fr. Lycii
Gou Qi Zi
Sm. Cuscutae
Tu Si Zi

(Hb. Dendrobii)
(Shi Hu)

Rx. Scutellariae
Huang Qin
Rx. Gentianae
Long Dan Cao
Flos Chrysanthemi
Ju Hua

Liver and Kidney Deficiency causing cataracts with diminished vision.

Liver and Kidney Deficiency causing cataracts with diminished vision and dizziness.

Heat in the Liver channel with red, painful, swollen eyes.

Rx. Scutellariae
Huang Qin
Hb. Houttuyniae
Yu Xing Cao

Hb. Fritillariae Thunbergii)
(Zhe Bei Mu)

Rx. Stemonae
Bai Bu

Rx. Stemonae
Bai Bu
Rz. Pinelliae Preparata
Zhi Ban Xia
Per. Citri Reticulatae
Chen Pi

Lung Heat coughs with copious yellow sputum.

Pediatric chronic cough.

Pediatric chronic cough with Excess sputum.

Caul. Akebiae
Mu Tong
Hua Shi
Fr. Gardeniae
Zhi Zi

Rz. Atractylodis Macrocephalae
Bai Zhu
Fu Ling

Rx. Codonopsis
Dang Shen
Rz. Atractylodis Macrocephalae
Bai Zhu
Rx. Glycyrrhizae
Gan Cao
Fu Ling
Per. Citri Reticulatae
Chen Pi

Re Lin. (Damp-Heat dysuria)

Diarrhea with dysuria.

Summer diarrhea in children.

Rz. Coptidis
Huang Lian
Sm. Cassiae
Jue Ming Zi
Fr. Viticis
Man Jing Zi
Fol. Mori
Sang Ye
Flos Buddlejae
Mi Meng Hua
Flos Chrysanthemi
Ju Hua

Concha Haliotidis
Shi Jue Ming

Rx. Ophiopogonis
Mai Men Dong
Rx. Adenophorae
Nan Sha Shen

Eye redness, swelling and pain from Liver Fire.

Headache due to Liver Yang Rising.

Lung Yin Deficiency cough.

  1. This herb is often used for pelvic inflammations, especially urinary tract infections.
  2. The whole plant, Hb. Plantaginis Che Qian Cao is less effective at promoting urination but better at clearing Heat. It also detoxifies. It is sweet and cold and treats abscesses and swellings (internally and topically). The dosage is 9-30g or 2-5ml as a tincture.
  3. The seed contains mucilage and soothes the vagina, colon and urinary tract.
  4. This herb is important for promoting urination, clearing Damp-Heat and clearing Heat from the Liver and Lung.
  5. The seeds are very small so to prevent them from making the decoction too gelatinous, decoct them in a separate cloth bag.
  6. Both Che Qian Zi and Rz. Alismatis Ze Xie facilitate water, reduce edema, clear Heat, enter the Kidney channel and drain Dampness. They are often used together to treat abdominal distention due to edema, Lin Syndrome and Summerheat-Damp diarrhea. Che Qian Zi benefits the Kidneys by removing pathogenic Dampness, clears the Liver and eyes and transforms Phlegm in the Lungs to treat pathogenic Heat leading to red eyes and Lung Heat transforming into Phlegm. Ze Xie clears and drains ministerial Fire to treat Blazing Fire due to Yin Deficiency.
  7. Unprepared Plantago Seeds Sheng Che Qian Zi are slippery and heavy and direct Heat and Dampness downward and out through the urine.
  8. Dry-fried Plantago Seeds Chao Che Qian Zi are less cold and are able to expel water and Dampness without injuring Spleen Qi. They are used for diarrhea and/or vaginal discharge due to Spleen Deficiency.
  9. Salt-processed Plantago Seeds Yan Zhi Che Qian Zi directs downward and facilitate urination to treat overflow of water and Dampness due to Kidney and Spleen Yang Deficiency.