Lycii (Goji) Berries (Lycium barbarum)


Lycii berry, otherwise known to Chinese herbalists as Goji or Chinese Wolfberry is a bright red, almost chewy berry with a taste very similar to Raisins. It has been used as a general nutrient tonic (Yin tonic) for many years and Chinese medicine refers to it as a “cooling tonic”.

PLEASE NOTE! “Goji berry” and Lycii berry are virtually the same, with the only discernable difference is that Goji is usually a high altitude strain of Lycium and is commonly found in the Himalayas, Nepal, Tibet, etc., whereas Lycii berry is the more common variety found in lowland areas. For trade purposes they are usually considered the same.

This herb was initially recorded for medicinal purpose in The Book of Songs, with more than 3,000 years of history. Its name of Gou Qi Zi first appeared in Shen Nong s Herbal Classic and there it was classified as one of the best herbs. And ever since this herb has been one of the herbalists favorites. In the East Jin Dynasty, Ge Hong, a medical master and alchemist, got juice by pounding it alone for the treatment of eye disorders. In Tang Dynasty, Sun Simiao, A famous Taoist and medical expert, combined this herb with others to make liver tonic teapills to cure blurring vision. And the famous Five Ancestors Teapills, formulated by Li Ting in Tang Dynasty, is composed of goji, Semen Cuscutae, and other herbs for male impotence, premature ejaculation, infertility, premature graying, and urine endless. Now this herb is enjoying the enormous popularity worldwide by made into goji berry tea, bars, beer, cookies, cuttings, drinks, dessert, extract, eye cream, powder, essential oil, face mask, facial cream, smoothie, jam, jelly, muffin, supplement, tablets, and more. In recent years, science has got a further understanding on goji berries by analyzing its chemical composition and pharmacology.

Modern goji pharmacological actions

1. It improves immune function, enhances the body s ability to adapt to a variety of noxious stimuli;
2. It significantly inhibits the generation and spread of cancer cells;
3. It improves eyesight;
4. It tremendously increases the reserves of muscle glycogen and liver glycogen. Thus it increases human energy and has anti-fatigue effect;
5. It improves brain function and enhances learning and memory capabilities;
6. It boosts the body s adaptive defenses, which thus enhances the endurance to various noxious stimuli, such as hypoxia, cold, blood loss, and more;
7. It enhances the body s hematopoietic function by promoting the proliferation of hematopoietic cell, increasing white blood cell count, and reinforcing the body s hematopoietic function;
8. It effectively enhances various organs functions, improves brain function, resists free radicals as an antioxidant, and then delays aging;
9. It dramatically reduces the levels of serum cholesterol and triglyceride, reduces and prevents arteriosclerosis and hypertension;
10. It relieves allergy symptoms, e.g. gastrointestinal tract bleeding and joint pain. And this effect is achieved by regulating the endocrine;
11. It protects liver and nourishes kidney by inhibiting the deposition of fat in the liver cells and promoting the regeneration of liver cells;
12. The guanidine derivatives contained can lower blood sugar. So it can be used as health product for people with diabetes;
13. Its tea helps with weight loss and obesity;
14. It treats chronic hepatitis and cirrhosis.