Goji Berry – A Superfood?

Goji Berry – A Superfood?

Gou Qi Zi – Goji berry or Wolfberry
Pharmaceutical Name: Fructus Lycii

There is a story about a Chinese traveler who, while passing through a village called Xihe, happened to witness a young lady beating an old man with grey hair all over his head.  The young lady looked about 15 or 16 years old and the old man somewhere between 80 and 90.

The traveler asked the young lady why she was beating the old man and she explained that she was his granddaughter and she was angry with him for failing to take his longevity herbs.  That was why he looked so old, she said.

The traveler asked her age and was told that she was 372 years old.  Rather taken aback, he asked her how she had managed to live that long and she replied that she consumed goji berry all year round.

One of China’s greatest herbalists, Li ShiZhen, who wrote the Outline of Materia Medica, published in 1578, pointed out in his book that the people in the village of Nan Qiu were in the habit of eating goji berry and that a very high percentage of them lived a long life.


And a famous Chinese poet in the Tang Dynasty (618 – 907 A.D.) by the name of Liu YuXi wrote a poem in praise of the wonderful effects of goji berry, which said that even the water from a well near the plant can make people live a long healthy life.

The plant of goji berry is a trailing shrub with thorny stalks.  Its berries and roots are the most valuable parts of the plant for medicinal purposes.  It nourishes liver and kidney yin, clears deficiency heat, and is widely used for menopausal and post-delivery women, infertility, and those with autoimmune conditions that stem from yin deficiency such as multiple sclerosis, systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE), Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s.

Source: Chinese Natural Cures: Traditional Methods for Remedy and Prevention (2005), by Dr. Henry C. Lu.

Dr. Mee Lain Ling