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Bīng Láng 檳榔

Pharmaceutical name Arecae Semen areaca, betel nut
Category Parasites
Key Properties Expels parasites
Resolves firm accumulations
Facilitates urination
Resolves phlegm and food stagnation
Directs qi downward
Properties Acrid
Tropism LI, ST
Actions & Indications 1) Kills Parasites
2) Moves Qi, Reduces Accumulation, Mildly Drains Downward, Unblocks Bowels
3) Promotes Movement of Qi and Promotes Urination
4) Used for Malarial Disorders
Dosages 6-15g
Contraindications (TCM) Use with caution in cases of collapse of the middle Qi, loose stools, Qi prolapse, weak SP and ST
Contraindications (Western) Caution during pregnancy, has teratogenic and fetotoxic effects
Chemical Composition Areca red, arecoline, arecaine, guracine, guvacoline, arecolidine, homoarecoline
Pharmacological Effects • Antiparasitic: both water and alcohol extracts demonstrated marked impact in paralyzing liver flukes; therapeutic effects vary depending on concentration of final solution; concentrations of 1x10-2 and 1x10-3 determined to be most effective
• Antiparasitic: strong antiparasitic effect against various intestinal parasites, including but not limited to tapeworm, roundworm, and hookworm; according to one study, 30% solution of Bing Lang can kill tapeworms in dogs within 40 minutes; in another study, effectively paralyzed tapeworms in cows and pigs
• Antihypertensive: according to studies, administration of Areca II-5-C acts as an angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitor that shows marked antihypertensive functions; direct comparison between Areca II-5-C and captopril showed that both substances have comparable effects in reducing blood pressure
• Gastrointestinal: arecoline increases production of gastric acid, increases intestinal peristalsis, and increases appetite; in one study, decoction at 9.98 g/kg induced diarrhea within 65 minutes to expel parasites; in another study, a 20% injection associated with stimulation of and increased contractility of the gallbladder, in cats and dogs; when used with Da Huang (Radix et Rhizoma Rhei), the combination stimulated expulsion of gallstones; arecoline stimulated smooth muscle and led to uterine contraction in rabbits
Herb-Drug Interactions • Antipsychotics: has been suggested that an exacerbation of extrapyramidal effects may occur with concurrent use of neuroleptic drugs and betel nuts; two cases of severe extrapyramidal symptoms were reported when patients with chronic schizophrenic disorders treated with depot neuroleptics also consumed a heavy dose of betel nuts for a long period of time
Classical Formula(s)

Shu Zao Yin Zi (Dredging and Cutting Drink) 疏鑿飲子

Hua Chong Wan (delete Qian Dan)(Dissolve Parasites Pill) 化蟲丸(減鉛丹)

Mu Xiang Bing Lang Wan (Aucklandia and Betel Nut Pill) 木香檳榔丸

Shao Yao Tang (Peony Decoction) 芍藥湯

Si Mo Tang (Four Milled-Herb Decoction) 四磨湯

Tian Tai Wu Yao San (Top-Quality Lindera Powder) 天臺烏藥散 (天台烏药散)

Da Yuan Yin (Reach the Source Drink) 達原飲

Fei Er Wan (Fat Baby Pill) 肥兒丸

Ji Ming San (Powder to Take at Cock's Crow) 雞鳴散

Shi Liu Wei Liu Qi Yin (Sixteen Ingredient Drink for Qi Flow) 十六味流氣飲

Zhou Che Wan (Vessel and Vehicle Pill) (deleted qing fen) 舟車丸 (減輕粉)


This information is a reference tool for Chinese herbal studies. It is not intended to replace professional medical advice. Please consult a primary health professional if you require health advisory.