Home / Chinese Herb / CYPERUS TUBER [香附, XIANG FU]


Name : Cyperus TuberNode5134-mothertuber_opt

Chinese Name : 香附

Latin Name : Rhizoma Cyperi


This herb is the dried rhizome of Cyperus rotundus L. of the family Cyperaceae. It is grown in all parts of  China and other parts of the world. Harvested in autumn, it is washed, dried in the sun, and used unprocessed or stir baked with vinegar.

Cyperus tuber is a Qi-regulating stomachic. The herb was traditionally used as a stimulant, tonic, stomachic, sedative, and  astringent, for fluxes of all kinds, colds in every organ, postpartum difficulties, boils, abscesses, and cancers. Today, it is used as a carminative, antispasmodic, anti-depressant, and anodyne for the treatment of PMS, chest and abdominal distension, ulcers, and pain.

Use of Cyperus Tuber in TCM

Pungent, slightly bitter and slightly sweet in taste, and neutral, cyperus acts on the liver and Sanjiao meridians.

Effects, Medicinal Uses, and Combinations

  1. Regulates Qi and soothes the liver:
  • For distension and pain in the chest, hypochondria and abdominal regions due to stagnation of Liver-Qi, cyperus tuber is combined with bupleurum, bitter orange, and white peony root, as in Chai Hu Shu Gan San.
  • It can also be used with bupleurum, trichosanthes fruit, and tangerine leaf in a decoction for distension and pain in the breasts.
  • To relieve stomach pains caused by stagnation of Qi and Cold in the stomach, cyperus tuber is blended with ginger root, as in Liang Fu Wan.
  1. Regulates menstruation and relieves menstrual pain: for irregular menstruation and dysmenorrhea, cyperus tuber is often mixed with Chinese melia (chuan lian zi), Chinese angelica root (dang gui), cnidium (chuan xiong), corydalis, and white peony root.
  2. Relieves stagnation and depression: for feelings of helplessness, sadness, depression, anxiety, and stagnation in the chest, cyperus tuber is dispensed with cnidium, atractylodes, medicated leaven, tangerine peel, and pinellia tuber, as in Liu Yu Tang.


In a decoction of 6 to 12 g.


People who suffer from Qi and blood deficiency, and yin deficiency should not use cyperus tuber or use with caution.

Side Effects and Toxicity

No undesirable side effects or toxicity were reported at the therapeutic dose in classical Chinese materia medica.

Chemical Constituents

Cyperus tuber contains essential oils with major components of alpha- and beta-cyperone, alpha- and beta-cyperol, and cyperene. Other components of the oil are beta-pinene, camphene, 1,8-cineole, limonene, beta-selinene, selinatriene, isoceperol, cyperolone, rotundone, kobusone, and isokobusone. Other isolated ingredients are triterpenes, alkaloids, flavones, glucose, fructose, and starch.

Pharmacological Findings

  1. Cyperus tuber increased the secretion of saliva and gastric juice, increased stomach peristalsis, and improved the elimination of accumulated gas in the gastrointestinal tract.
  2. Action on the uterus: inhibits the contraction of the uterus and relieves spasms. The volatile oil of cyperus has female hormone (estrogenic) action.
  3. The alcohol extract of cyperus tuber is anti-inflammatory, antipyretic, sedative, and analgesic, and decreases the tension of the colon muscles.
  4. Antimicrobial.