Herbs & Botanicals
Coix Seed (yi yi ren)
What are coix seeds? What are they used for?
Coix seeds come from the coix plant, which is grown in the Fujian, Hebei
and Liaoning provinces in China. The seeds are usually oval-shaped or
egg-shaped, with a milky white outer surface and a slightly sweet taste.
Coix seeds are harvested in the fall when the coix plant ripens and are
dried in the sun. They are usually used unprepared, or they are stir-baked
until the outer shell has a yellowish color.
In traditional Chinese medicine, coix seeds serve several functions.
The stimulate function of the spleen and lung, remove heat (which helps
in the drainage of pus) and induce diuresis. Coix seeds are also used
to treat the symptoms of diarrhea and arthritis.
How much coix seed should I take?
amount of coix seeds taken depends on the condition being treated. A typical
dosage is between 10-30 grams, which can be combined with water for a
decoction, or ground into powder.
What forms of coix seed are available?
Unprepared and stir-fried coix seeds can be found at some Asian markets.
Coix seed decoctions and powders are more difficult to find, but still
available in some markets and specialty stores.
What can happen if I take too much coix seed?
Are there any interactions I should be aware of? What precautions should
At present, there are no known contraindications, side-effects or drug
interactions with coix seed. However, you should always consult with a
qualified health care practitioner before taking coix seeds or any other
dietary supplement or herbal remedy.
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