Goji Berries - Gou Qi Zi
Products Featuring This Herb:
Goji Berry Extract Powder 100 grams
Goji Berry Extract Powder 5 kilograms
8 Immortals Drops
Ant Drops, Chinese Mountain
Gecko Rockclimber Drops
Goji & Schizandra Drops
Heaven Mountain Goji Berries
Return to Youth
Spring Dragon Drops
Spring Dragon Longevity Tea
Super Pill No.1
Yin Replenisher Drops
Cool Bones Teapills
Five Ancestors Teapills
Heavenly Heart Teapills
Left Side Replenishing Teapills
Lycii Chrysanthemum Teapills
Morinda Yin Yang Pills
Return to Spring Teapills
Right Side Replenishing Teapills
Seven Treasures for Hair Teapills
Other Common Names
Goji Berries, Wolfberries, Lycium barbarum L.
Page # In Ancient Wisdom of the Chinese Tonic Herbs
Gou Qi Zi
Yin Jing, Blood
Organ Meridian Systems
To tonify the Kidneys and promote the production of essence, to strengthen the legs, to nourish the Liver and brighten the eyes, to moisten the lungs
When Goji extract was provided to 20 elderly people, once a day for 3 weeks, more than 67% of the patients’ T cell transformation functions tripled and the activity of the patients’ white cell interleukin-2 doubled. In addition, the results showed that all the patients’ spirit and optimism increased significantly, appetite improved in 95% of the patients, 95% of the patients slept better and 35% of the patients at least partially recovered their sexual function.
Goji Berries contains a powerful polysaccharide which has been shown to have potent immune enhancing activity. This same polysaccharide has been found to be a secretagogue, that is, a substance that stimulates the secretion in the pituitary gland of human growth hormone, a powerful innate anti-aging hormone.
This delicious fruit is very widely used throughout Asia as a superb Yin essence and blood tonic. It is one of the most popular herbs in the world. Regular consumption of Goji is traditionally believed to lead to a long, vigorous and happy life. And it is said that prolonged consumption of Goji will promote cheerfulness and brighten the Shen. Goji is also said to brighten the eyes and improve vision. Goji strengthens the legs and has long been a favorite herb of Chinese martial artists and athletes. Goji Berries is widely believed to increase sexual fluids and enhance fertility. Goji, like Ginseng and Ganoderma, is a quintessential tonic herb.
Goji has long been used as a longevity herb. It is one of the premier anti-aging herbs of Asian herbalism and is believed to fortify the system against disease and to provide the energy to overcome difficult obstacles.
This herb is now being used in clinical settings for a number of common maladies. Goji is used in the treatment of consumptive disease accompanied by thirst such as early-onset diabetes, tuberculosis, dizziness, blurred vision and chronic cough.
Goji has been tested as an anti-obesity agent. Patients were given 30 grams each morning afternoon to be made into a tea. Results were excellent. Most patients lost significant weight.
Goji is commonly used in the treatment of diabetes. 8-10 grams of fruit is steamed and eaten each time, three times daily (steaming softens the fruits). The daily dosage range of 8-30 grams is typical of medical applications in China.
Goji Berries, as an ingredient in prescriptions, has been used in a number of recent clinical trials for treatment of bone marrow deficiency conditions (low production of red blood cells, white blood cells and platelets).
It has been reported that Goji has been used in the treatment of atrophic gastritis weakened digestion due to reduced stomach activity. Patients consume 10 grams of the whole fruits each time, twice daily before meals for two months or longer.
Goji is commonly used by first trimester mothers to prevent morning sickness. 50 grams of Goji is boiled along with 50 grams of Scute for 30 minutes. Drinking this tea is a quick and effective remedy for morning sickness.
Blended with Yang tonic herbs such as Deer Antler, Morinda and Cordyceps, with Qi tonics such as Astragalus and Ginseng and with Astringent herbs such as Schizandra and Cornus, Goji is one of the fundamental sexual tonic herbs in Chinese herbalism.
It is said in China that eating a handful of Goji a day will make you happy for the entire day. Such a practice has a cumulative effect. Eventually you can’t stop smiling.
Fresh Ning Xia Goji has the highest content of beta-carotene among all foods on earth. Beta-carotene can be transformed into vitamin A under the influence of human liver enzymes. Therefore, vitamin A ultimately plays a major influence in Goji’s actions. Goji’s function on the eyes is related to this factor. Goji’s vitamin B1 and B2 contents are significant and the vitamin C content of freeze-dried Goji has been measured to be 73 mg/100 grams.
The fruit also contains vitamin C, beta-sitosterol (an anti-inflammatory agent), linoleic acid (a fatty acid), sesquiterpenoids (cyperone, solavetivone), tetraterpenoids (zeaxanthin, physalin) and betaine (0.1%).
Goji contains 18 kinds of amino acids, of which 8 are indispensable amino acids for the human body (such as isoleucine and tryptophan). 50% of Goji’s amino acids are free amino acid. Goji contains numerous trace elements, of which the main ones are zinc, iron and copper. Mature fruits contain about 11 mg. of iron per 100 grams. Ning Xia Goji contains 45% glucose, 7% fructose and 5.5% glucose.
Goji has been undergoing intense scrutiny as a cancer drug in China and Japan. Goji Berries, as well as an extract from its leaves, can kill many kinds of cancer cells in vitro. In vivo studies and human studies are proving to be highly promising. Ning Xia Goji contains 124 ppm of organic Germanium. Germanium has been demonstrated to have anti-cancer activity. Japanese studies indicate that organic Germanium is effective in treating liver cancer, lung cancer, uterine cancer, cervical cancer and testicular cancer when combined with other drugs. Goji has been found to induce the production in human beings of g-interferon. Interferon can depress and even kill cancer cells. Germanium possesses the power to take over the hydrogen ion from cancer cells. Losing hydrogen ions can cause depression and even death to cancer cells. Besides Germanium, Goji has other components that act against cancer. These other components appear to be able to depress or block the synthesis of the cancer cells DNA, which interferes with the cell’s ability to divide and therefore lowers the reproductive capacity of the cancer cells.
Preparation and Utilization
May be consumed alone, but mostly used in formulas.
Rehmannia (steamed) to strengthen Jing, nourish Kidney yin and build blood
Ginseng Root to strengthen the Heart and Kidney
Chrysanthemum flower and Ophiopogon to tonify Kidney yin, nourish Jing, disperse Liver heat and clear the eyes
Schizandra to tonify Kidney and Liver yin and strengthen Jing
Varieties and Grading
Because of Goji’s great fame over many, many centuries, it has been collected and cultivated in almost every region of China. It grows on hillsides and ridges in most areas of China. The best Goji grows in cool climatic areas. The Goji is collected in the summer and autumn when the fruit is mature. It is spread thin on bamboo mats and dried in semi-shady sunlight. The farmers must be very careful not to touch the fruit with their hands during the drying process because this will cause the fruit to turn very dark, which is unacceptable.
There are two primary varieties of Goji. The first is called Ning Xia Goji. This Goji is the preferred herb of herbal connoisseurs. It is big, has thick fruit meat, has few seeds and its taste is sweet and exquisite. Ning Xia Goji is further graded according to size, larger ones selling for considerably more than smaller ones. The larger ones tend to be sweeter and have a juicier texture. Grade 1 Ning Xia Goji has no more than 370 fruits per 50 grams. Grade 2 has no more than 580 grains per 50 grams. Grade 4 has no more than 1100 grains per 50 grams and no more than 15% damaged fruit.
A second variety is known as Blood Goji. Blood Goji is of a lower quality than Ning Xia Goji. The Blood Goji Berries tends to be relatively small, has numerous seeds, has a bright glossy skin that is thicker and tougher than that of Ning Xia Goji and is considerably less sweet. Often, Blood Goji has a distinct tartness that overwhelms the sweetness. Grade 1 Blood Goji contains no more than 600 fruit grains per 50 grams. Blood Goji is OK and it still has the tonic benefits associated with Goji, but it is far inferior to Ning Xia Goji.
Blood Goji is very commonly found in Chinese herb markets, but it is not commonly found in America. Almost all of it is picked up commercially in China by Asian or American manufacturers who process the herb into off-the-shelf products. Premium manufacturers will still use Ning Xia Goji, but the lower cost of Blood Goji tempts most producers to select it for packaged products.
There are other minor varieties of Goji available in America. Shandong Goji is similar to Ning Xia, but is not as sweet and are not usually as plump. They are therefore less expensive.
At the herb shop, you may select your Goji by looking at it, feeling it and tasting it. It should have a uniform color that is not too bright. Some suppliers in Asia dye the fruit red to make it more “attractive” to naive buyers. It should not have any dark fruit mixed in — dark fruit is oxidized and spoiled. The fruit should be firm and not mushy. Mushy fruit is spoiled. Larger fruit is best. Always taste Goji before you buy it. It should be delectable. Great Goji is very sweet and a total pleasure to eat raw or cooked.
Goji has absolutely no toxicity. However, it should not be used in the cases of hyperactive fire due to an exopathogen, or if you are suffering from Spleen deficiency with dampness and diarrhea.