Calming Licorice, Wheat and Chinese Date Tea

Gān Mài Dà Zăo Tāng 甘麦大枣汤  is a very simple formula that is often mixed with other herbs but can also be used alone. It makes a nice, soothing, lightly sweet tea which helps reduce anxiety and depression. It can also be used for restlessness at night causing insomnia, which may be accompanied by night sweats. Traditionally this combination was indicated for one who cried easily. This tea is great for the postpartum period, anxiety attacks, and following or during any other type of stressful moment. I used to brew some up and take it with me into exams while I was in school. I like to drink these 3 herbs as a simple tea any time I’m feeling unsettled.

It consists of only 3 ingredients:

Gān Căo  甘草: Licorice Root

Fú Xiăo Mài  浮小麦: a type of Wheat, sometimes substituted by Mai Ya, a type of Malt (lightly fried or Chao Mai Ya is a great substitute, especially when there are digestive issues present)

Dà Zăo 大枣: Chinese Dates (also called Chinese Jujubes)

To brew the tea: the simplest way is to make an infusion. Place a palmful (roughly 1/4 cup) of each herb in a quart-sized container with a lid and add boiling water. Let steep for 15 minutes to 1 hour. After at least 15 min, you can start to pour off some of the liquid and drink it, leaving the rest to keep steeping. You can also make it by the cup, using about half the amount of herbs, and just keep pouring boiling water on top of them through the day.

These 3 herbs are all food products, so for most of us it’s ok to use them copiously. There are exceptions to every rule though, so if you have high blood pressure or are pregnant or nursing, please consult an herbalist before you drink this.

Want to see if this tea is right for you or find out what else you can do for anxiety, depression and insomnia with Chinese medicine? Schedule an appointment at my convenient location between Wallingford and Fremont today. Consultations and information are always free. Until the end of June, new patient visits are almost 1/2 price!