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Cool hot flashes naturally with Chinese Herbal Medicine

By Adam Haysom-McDowell
from Annandale Natural Health & Chinese Medicine

Menopause is a physiological process that signifies the end of a woman’s reproductive lifespan. However, the symptoms associated with this transition can be distressing and debilitating. Hot flashes, characterized by sudden and intense sensations of heat, can cause significant discomfort and distress in menopausal women. In this context, Chinese herbal medicine has emerged as an alternative therapy that can offer safe and effective relief from hot flashes during menopause.

Traditional Chinese medicine attributes hot flashes to an imbalance of yin and yang energy in the body. Chinese herbal medicine aims to address this imbalance by using a combination of herbs that act synergistically to restore balance and promote health. The therapeutic efficacy of Chinese herbal medicine for alleviating hot flashes is supported by a growing body of scientific evidence.

Black cohosh / Sheng Ma (Cimicifuga rhizoma) is a herb that is widely used in Chinese herbal medicine to alleviate hot flashes during menopause. A double-blind, placebo-controlled trial involving 84 menopausal women found that black cohosh significantly reduced the frequency and severity of hot flashes compared to placebo. (1)

Dong Quai / Dang Gui (Angelica sinensis) is another herb that is commonly used in Chinese herbal medicine to alleviate hot flashes. Dang Gui has been shown to exert estrogenic effects, which can help alleviate menopausal symptoms, and one of two herbs in the Chinese herbal formula “Dang Gui Bu Xue Tang”.  A 12-week randomized controlled trial involving 60 postmenopausal women found that Dang Gui Bu Xue Tang significantly reduced the severity of hot flashes compared to placebo. (2)

Other herbs that are commonly used in Chinese herbal medicine to alleviate hot flashes during menopause include Foxglove Root / Shu Di Huang (Rehmannia Glutinosa) and Goji Fruit / Gou Qi Zi (Lucium Chinense). Chinese medicine considers these herbs as yin and blood tonics. This is to counteract the age related loss of yin that is experienced with menopause.

To use Chinese herbal medicine to alleviate hot flashes during menopause, it is important to seek guidance from a qualified practitioner. Although Chinese herbal medicine is generally safe, some herbs may interact with certain medications or have potential side effects. Therefore, it is essential to develop a personalized treatment plan that considers the individual needs of each patient.

In conclusion, Chinese herbal medicine offers a safe and effective way to alleviate hot flashes during menopause. The therapeutic efficacy of Chinese herbal medicine is supported by scientific evidence, and herbs such as black cohosh, angelica, rehmannia and goji have been shown to alleviate menopausal symptoms. As a practitioner, it is essential to be aware of the potential benefits and limitations of Chinese herbal medicine to provide comprehensive care to menopausal women experiencing hot flashes.



  1. Shahnazi M, Nahaee J, Mohammad-Alizadeh-Charandabi S, Bayatipayan S. Effect of black cohosh (cimicifuga racemosa) on vasomotor symptoms in postmenopausal women: a randomized clinical trial. J Caring Sci. 2013;2(2):105-13.
  2. Wang CC, Cheng KF, Lo WM, Law C, Li L, Leung PC, et al. A randomized, double-blind, multiple-dose escalation study of a Chinese herbal medicine preparation (Dang Gui Buxue Tang) for moderate to severe menopausal symptoms and quality of life in postmenopausal women. Menopause (New York, NY). 2013;20(2):223-31.


More about the author

Adam Haysom-McDowell.pdf
Adam Haysom-McDowell
– Annandale Natural Health & Chinese Medicine

Adam is a nationally registered Acupuncturist and Chinese Medicine Herbalist, qualified with a Bachelor of Health Science (TCM), Graduate Certificate in Human Nutrition, Diploma of Remedial Massage and a Diploma of Fitness. With over 10 years' experience working in both multi-modality (physiotherapy, chiropractic) and his own clinic, Adam brings an integrative approach to his Natural Health practice in the Sydney suburb of Annandale.