Chinese club moss is an herb that is used in traditional forms of Chinese medicine. Also known as Qian Ceng Ta, Chinese club moss has a reputation for being very helpful with fever and inflammation. There is also some evidence that the herbal compound is helpful with some forms of dementia, depression, and panic disorders.
The active ingredient in Chinese club moss that helps with many different ailments is Huperzine A. Essentially, the moss helps to block the action of the enzyme acetylcholinesterase. This enzyme has an effect on the neurotransmitters known as acetycholines. By blocking the action of the enzyme, Chinese club moss helps to promote proper function of this neurotransmitter. As a result, the individual experiences greater ease in learning and cognitive abilities.
There is a great deal of anecdotal evidence for the effectiveness of Chinese club moss when it comes to reducing fever and inflammation in the joints. One purported reason for the effectiveness of the moss is that the herb has demonstrated an ability to eliminate excess water from the body. This makes the moss helpful with bloating and other medical conditions in which water retention occurs as a symptom.
More recently, there has been some interest in the use of Chinese club moss to maintain good emotional balance. The ability of Huperzine A to promote positive thinking processes is often cited as helping people with depression and panic disorders. By promoting a positive mood, Chinese club moss calms the nervous system and prevents the release of excess adrenaline into the body. As a result, the individual does not experience panic attacks and does not go through the emotional and physical fatigue that usually follows these attacks.
While the use of Chinese club moss has been part of Chinese medicine for centuries, there has been little research in Western medicine about the benefits of the herb. However, alternative health practitioners recognize the effectiveness of this and other Chinese herbs for treatment of a number of conditions that are increasingly common in today’s world.