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Chi Xiao Dou (Aduki Bean, Phaseolus)

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Neutral Chi Xiao Dou (Semen Phaseoli Calcarati)
Sweet, Sour, Neutral
Semen Phaseoli Calcarati
Tone Marks:
chì xiăo dòu
Dark Red Little Bean


  • Promotes Urination and Reduces Swelling
    For edema, ascites, abdominal swelling and fullness, urinary difficulty and leg qi edema due to water accumulation. It regulates the water circulation of the body.
  • Clears Damp Heat and Relieves Jaundice
    For mild jaundice due to accumulation of damp heat.
  • Disperses Blood Stagnation, Reduces Swelling and Toxins, Drains Pus
    For Erysipelas, carbuncles, furuncles, sores, lesions and toxic swellings. It will drain pus, reduces swelling and enhance recovery.

Contraindications and Cautions

  • It leaches the yin and yang fluids
  • Do not use in Yin Deficiency cases or those without dampness

Herb-Drug Interactions

  • This section is being researched, and is not completed.

Toxicity and Overdose

  • Overdose can lead to miscarriage. Allergic reactions are reported including pruritis, flushing, nausea and vomiting, palpitations, and urticaria


  • 10-30 grams in decoction. It can be used internally or topically 12
  • 9-30 grams in decoction 13


  • The 3 beans; Chi Xiao Dou, Lu Dou and Hei Dou all promote urination, eliminate edema, resolve toxicity and treat skin lesions. Chi Xiao Dou due to its unique sour taste has a strong ability to promote urination and drain edema but will dry people out if consumed long term.

Clinical Studies and Research

  • 7 mumps patients were treated topically with chi xiao dou, water, egg white, or honey resulting in positive responses
    Ha Er Bing Zhong Yi, 1965:9;32
  • 52 patients with swelling, bruises, strains or sprains, were given a 24 hour topical plaster of chi xiao dou and water with good results after 1 or 2 doses.
    Zhong Xi Yi Jie He Za Zhi, 1985; 10;630
  • 20 patients with insufficient lactation were given 240 grams Chi Xiao Dou twice daily for 3-5 days with good results.
    Chi Jiao Yi Shi Za Zhi, 1975; 12;593

This Herb Appears in the Following Formulas: