Hei Zhi Ma – (Black) Sesame Seed – Semen Sesami Nigrum

Hei Zhi Ma

English Name: (black) sesame seed

Pharmaceutical Name: Semen Sesami Nigrum

Medica Category: Yin-Tonifying Herbs

Properties: Hei Zhi Ma enters the Liver and Kidney channels; it is sweet in nature and neutral in temperature.

What is Hei Zhi Ma?:

The Chinese Herb Hei Zhi Ma is dried seeds from Sesamum indicum L., a well known plant cultivated around the world that produces sesame seeds. In TCM black sesame seeds that are ripe and full are used medicinally. Usually, they are dry-fried and then either decocted or ground into a powder (for internal use), but they can also be taken as food or made into a paste/used as a wash for topical applications (for sores and insect bites).

Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) Therapeutic Actions of Hei Zhi Ma:

Hei Zhi Ma tonifies Liver blood and Kidney jing (essence) to address premature graying of the hair, blurred vision, and dizziness.

Hei Zhi Ma tonifies blood to address insufficient lactation in nursing women.

Hei Zhi Ma moistens dryness and lubricates the intestines to address dry stools and constipation caused by blood deficiency and lack of body fluids.

–safety/clinical notes:

Use with caution in persons with diarrhea.

Use with caution for those with toothache from rising fire.