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hong jing tian 紅景天   

by: Joe Hing kwok Chu  (article in Chinese and English 中英文)

See the picture dry flowers here.            按此看紅景天花飲片圖

Pharmaceutical name:


Radix Thodiolae, Flos Thodiolae, Herba Thodiolae

Botanical name:


Rhodiola rosea L. (薔薇紅景天)

Rhodiola tibetica (Hook. f. et Thoms.) S. H. Fu (西藏紅景天)

Rhodiola sachalinensis A.Bor.[Sedum sachalinensis(A.Bor.)Vorosh.] (庫頁紅景天)
Rhodiola sacra(Prain ex Hamet)S.H.Fu [Sedum sacra Prain ex Hamet]. (聖地紅景天)
Rhodiola algida(Ledeb.) Mey.var.tangutica(Maxim.)S.H.Fu ( 唐古特紅景天)

Rhodiola megalophylla (Fröd.) S.H. Fu ( synonym : Rhodiola crenulata (Hook. f. & Thomson) H. Ohba ) (大葉紅景天)

Rhodiola yunnanensis [Franch] S. H. Hu (雲南紅景天)

Rhodiola crenulata L. (大花紅景天)[23]

Rhodiola dumulosa (Franch.) S. H. Fu, (小叢紅景天)

Rhodiola serrata H. Ohba (齒葉紅景天)[24]

Pron. in Japanese:



Pron. in Korean:


hong kyung chun

Pron. in Cantonese:


hung4 ging2 tin1 

Other Names:


qiang wei hong jing tian 薔薇紅景天,sao luo ma er bu 掃羅瑪爾布

Common Name:


golden root,  rose-root, roseroot, Aaron's rod, arctic root, king's crown, lignum rhodium, orpin rose



Varieties   種類

distribution    分佈

Rhodiola rosea L. (薔薇紅景天)

 Xinjiang, Shanxi, Henan, Hebei. 新 疆,山西,河北

Rhodiola tibetica (Hook. f. et Thoms.) S. H. Fu (西藏紅景天)

distributed in Afghanistan, India, Pakistan. Produced in western part of Tibet, southern part of Qinghai., 分佈於阿富汗 ,印度及巴基斯坦。產地:西藏西部及青海南部

Rhodiola sachalinensis A.Bor.[Sedum sachalinensis(A.Bor.)Vorosh.] (庫頁紅景天)

Heilongjiang, Jilin. 黑龍江,吉林。

Rhodiola sacra(Prain ex Hamet)S.H.Fu [Sedum sacra Prain ex Hamet]. (聖地紅景天)

Nepal and provinces of China of Tibet, Yunnan. 尼泊爾,中國的西藏,雲南。

Rhodiola algida(Ledeb.) Mey.var.tangutica(Maxim.)S.H.Fu (唐古特紅景天)

Ningxia, Gansu, Qinghai, Sichuan.寧夏,甘肅,青海,四川。

Rhodiola megalophylla (Fröd.) S.H. Fu ( synonym : Rhodiola crenulata (Hook. f. & Thomson) H. Ohba ) (大葉紅景天)

Sichuan 四川等地

Rhodiola yunnanensis [Franch] S. H. Hu (雲南紅景天)

Tibet, Yunnan, Guizhou, Sichuan, western part of Hubei


Rhodiola crenulata L. (大花紅景天)

Sichuan, Yunnan, Tibet. 四川,雲南,西藏。

Rhodiola dumulosa (Franch.) S. H. Fu (小叢紅景天)

Jilin, Inner Mongolia, Hebei, Shanxi, Shaanxi, Gansu, Qinghai, Hubei, Sichuan.

吉林, 內蒙古,河北,山西,陝西,甘肅,青海,湖北,四川

Rhodiola serrata H. Ohba 齒葉紅景天[24]

Tibet 西藏




sweet, tart, cold.


Channels (meridians) entered:



spleen, stomach, lung, heart.


Medical functions:



Medical Functions:

Anti-oxidant effect: it can protect the liver from damages caused by a lipid type of peroxide.

anti aging [18]

Lower blood sugar: it inhibits the increase of glycogen caused by glucose and epinephrine.

Improves memory that has been damaged by drug or alcohol.

Adjusts the blood flow of the CNS.

Increases the flow volume of oxygen-carrying blood to the heart muscle; thus protects the muscle from damage caused by lack of oxygen.

Anti-hypoxia: It may prevent hypoxia-induced biological changes by either increasing intracellular oxygen diffusion and efficiency of oxygen utilization or reducing hypoxia-induced oxidative damage with its anti-oxidative ability; thus prevents high altitude sickness.1

Helps prevent strokes caused by hypertension.

Improves exercise endurance3  It has been used to improve or maintain endurance performance of athletes during training or competition by increasing biological factors associated with oxygen uptake. In-vivo experiments have shown that oral treatment with R. rosea extracts in rats can significantly prolong the duration of long-distance swimming and activate the synthesis or re-synthesis of ATP in mitochondria, which acts as the main energy source for most cellular functions and is essential for locomotion and respiration.2

Supplementation can reduce serum BUN,   ALT and AST levels.[12]


Anti-stress [6]

Anti-depression [7]. Rhodiola rosea L. roots have potent anti-depressant activity by inhibiting MAO A and may also find application in the control of senile dementia by their inhibition of MAO B.[13]

Alleviates anxiety [8]

Catechol-O-methyl-transferase (COMT)  inhibiting effect,  potentially enhancing the activity of presynaptic released dopamine.[5]

Prevents damaging effect of microwave radiation.

Hepatoprotective effect [9]

Decreased lipid peroxidation. Gui zhi and hong jing tian extracts may be effective for correcting hyperglycemia and preventing diabetic complications.[11]

Suppresses the biological enzymes of HCV NS3, thereby preventing the replication of hepatitis C virus.

Promotes the release of norepinephrine from rat penile corpus cavernosum smooth muscle cell and artery endothelium cell, which was correlated with its effect of resisting senility.[14]

The adaptogenic, cardiopulmonary protective, and central nervous

system activities of Rhodiola rosea have been attributed primarily to

its ability to influence levels and activity of monoamines and opioid

peptides such as beta-endorphins. [15]

Prolongs the life span of fruit flies by about 24% - 25% that were fed with the extract of the herb.[17],[18], [19]

beneficial anti-inflammation effects, lower COPD assessment test

score and decreased high-sensitivity C-reactive protein, on COPD8.patients [20]

effective in preventing the initiation of tumors and slowing down the tumor

growth in mice bearing tumor grafts, thereby further demonstrating its possible potential for treatment of breast cancer progression and metastasis [21]

See also a report that refutes this.



  1. 抗 氧化作用: 對脂質過氧化物肝損傷 有保護作用。

  2. 抗衰老[18]

  3. 降血糖作用: 抑制葡萄糖引起的肝糖 原增加及腎上腺素引起的肝糖原分解。對藥物與酒精引起記憶功能障礙有改善作用。

  4. 改善對藥物或酒精損傷之記憶力。

  5. 調整腦中區的血流量。對心腦血管方面有調整血液 流 動增加血液帶 氧 量對 心肌缺血, 缺氧的保護作用。預 防高原症。

  6. 預防高血壓引起之腦中風。

  7. 抗缺氧作用

  8. 它可能會阻止缺氧所引起的生理的變化。通過增加細胞 內的氧氣擴散和氧的利用效率,減少缺氧 誘導的氧化損傷,其抗氧化能力,從而防止高原症。

  9. 抗發炎

  10. 抗壓力[6]

  11. 抗憂鬱 [7]

  12. 降憂慮 [8]紅景天根通 過抑制 單胺氧化酶 A, 具有強大的抗抑憂鬱活性,也可以應用在控制老年痴呆症,抑制MAO B. [13]

  13. 增強運動耐力。3
    紅景天一直為體育專門用品,可提升或保持運動員於比賽或訓練期間的耐力。動物實驗證明,小鼠服食紅景天提取物後,能明顯延長長途游泳時 間,刺 激 細 胞內 線粒體中腺三磷(ATP)之合成或再合成。這種高能分子合成就是大多數 細胞功能的主要能量源,也是運動及呼吸不可缺的。2

  14. 降低血清BUN,ALTAST 水 平[12]。

  15. 抑制兒茶酚 - O -甲基轉移轉移酶(COMT) 之作用,可能會增多巴胺。[5]

  16. 抗微波輻射作用。4

  17. 保肝作用。[9]

  18. 減少脂質過氧化。桂枝和紅景天提取物可有效地糾正高血糖和預防糖尿病並 發症。[11]

  19. 能抑制丙肝上的生物酵素NS3,從而防止丙肝病毒複製。

  20. 紅景天促進釋放去甲腎上腺素與大鼠陰莖海綿體平滑肌細胞和血管內皮細胞的一氧化氮,其抗衰老的效果有關。[14]

  21. 能力影響單胺和阿片肽(例如β-內啡肽)的 水平和活性。[15]

  22. 餵食紅景天提取物溶液的果蠅能增加它們的壽命25%。[17],[18], [19]

  23. 在慢性阻塞性肺病(COPD)患者試驗中,紅景天有抗炎作用益處,能降低慢性阻塞性肺病者的症狀,和降低高敏C反 應蛋白,[20]

  24. 在小鼠瘤腫移植試驗中,紅景天能有效預防腫瘤的發生和減緩腫瘤生長,從而進一步表明其可能潛在用於治療乳腺癌 進展和癌腫的轉移。[21]

Actions & Indications:[3]


Corrects qi deficient and tonifies the lungs; benefits  the brain and mood; arrests bleeding; dissolves blood stasis and eliminates swellings.

It addresses qi deficient with weak body, feeling cold after sickness, short of breath and weakness.

Being used in coughing blood, cough in pneumonia, erectile dysfunction, leucorrhea in women.

External use: impact injuries, scalding, high altitude sickness.

功能:改善氣 虛而 清肺,益智養心,收澀止血,散消 腫。

主氣虛體弱,病後畏寒,氣短乏力,肺熱咳嗽。用於咳血 ,肺炎咳嗽,陽痿,婦女白帶。 外用治 跌打損傷, 燙火傷,高原反應。

Chemical ingredients:

化學成份 ﹕







rosarin (specific to R. rosea)

酪生 (只 在R. rosea中 存在)

Phenylethanol derivatives:

苯基乙醇衍 生物:



salidroside (rhodioloside)















單萜類 :






類 :



24 beta-sitostero

24 beta-穀 甾醇

Phenolic acids


chlorogenic acid


hydroxycinnamic acid


gallic acids [1]

沒食子酸 [1]

Other ingredients:

其它植物 成分:

tannic acid; 17 amino acids that are required by the human body; 21 kinds of trace minerals like iron, lead, zinc, cobalt,  titanium, copper,  and manganese; and also starch,  fat,  wax, protein,  vitamins etc.

鞣質,人體必需之17種氨基酸, 21種 微量元素(如 鐵,鋅, 鈷 ,鈦,銅,錳等,另有澱粉,脂肪,蠟,蛋白質,維生素等

Rhodiola dumulosa (Franch.) S. H. Fu contains: [22]




kaempferol 7-O-a-L-rhamnopyranoside




herbacetin 7-O-a-L-rhamnopyranoside, herbacetin 7-O-(3''-O-b-D-glucopyranosyl)-a-L-rhamnopyranoside




ellagic acid




gallic acid








3 to 9 g

3~9 [2]

Samples of formulae:

處方舉例 ﹕

For chronic fatigue syndrome:

hong jing tian 20ghuang qi 20gdang gui15gdang shen 30gbai zhu 15gsuan zao ren 12gshi chang pu 10gsha yuan zi 12gshan zhu yu 10gfu ling 15g .

One dosage per day. Boil with water and make into tea.

慢性疲勞综合症:紅景天20g,黃 耆 20g,當 歸 15g,黨 參 30g,生白 朮 15g,酸 棗仁 12g,石 菖蒲 10g,沙 苑子 12g,山 茱萸 10g,茯 苓 15g 。每日一剤。

(來源: 中國中醫藥報)

Modern Research:

現代研究 ﹕

The extract of hong jian tian increased the lifespan of fruit fly populations, according to a University of California, Irvine study.[16]

紅景天提取物餵 給果蠅,可以增加它們的壽命 [16]

Toxicity & Cautions:

毒素與禁 忌﹕

It  should be taken early in the day because it can interfere with sleep or cause vivid dreams during the first few weeks of use. [1]




[2] Whole China Chinese Herb Conglomeration Edition《 全國中草藥匯編》

[3] Zhong Hua Ben Cao 《 中華本草》

[4] Modern Practical Material Medica 《現代實用本草》

[5] Med Hypotheses. 2007;69(5):1054-60. Epub 2007 Apr 30.

[6] Phytomedicine. 2000 Oct;7(5):365-71

[7] Nord J Psychiatry. 2007;61(5):343-8.

[8] 2008 Mar;14(2):175-80.

[9] 2002 Nov-Dec;65(6):57-9.

[10] Antiviral Res., Vol.76, pp.86-92

[11] 2006;26(3):209-19.

[12] 2009;37(3):557-72.

[13] 2009 Mar 18;122(2):397-401. doi: 10.1016/j.jep.2009.01.007. Epub 2009 Jan 9.

[14] Chinese Journal of Andrology, vol 21, No. 10, 2007  《中国男科学雜誌》2007年 第10期 6-11页  

[15] 2001 Jun;6(3):293-302.


[17] doi:  10.1371/journal.pone.0063886

[18] 2007 Dec;10(4):587-602.


[20] PMID: 25403334 [PubMed - in process]
2008 Sep;11(3):413-23. doi: 10.1089/jmf.2007.0736.

[22] 化學學報, 1994, 52(9): 927-931. DU MEI;XIE JIAMIN. Studies on the chemical constituents of rhodiola

 crenulata. Acta Chimica Sinica, 1994, 52(9): 927-931.

[23] According to Materia Medica of China, the source of the herb Hong Jing Tian should come from Rhodiola crenulata (Hook. f. & Thomson) H. Ohba ) 根據中國藥典,紅景天藥材來源是大花紅景天。

[24] JOURN. JAP. BOT. 52: 263. 1977

1Jounal Pancreas 2, 16-25 (2001).

2.  Bull. Exp. Biol. Med. 136, 585-587 (2003);

3 ,Int-J-Sport-Nutr-Exerc-Metab. 2004 Jun; 14(3): 298-307

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