Chinese Herb Market
In Europe and the US, herbal medicines and eating special natural food for healing and increasing health and strength is appreciated by many people. Health food stores in the US sell herbal medicines and herbal substances generally based on the traditional European and American understanding of herbal pharmacology. However, using traditional Chinese herbal medicines is increasing common. The Chinese have cultivated and used many kinds of herbs, fruits and vegetables that are uncommon in the West for health and healing. This is partly because different plants grow in East Asia. If you go to traditional herbal and medicine markets in China, you may be surprised how cheaply you can buy the food and medicine on sale. There is a Chinese herbal market called the Xian Wanshou Road Chinese Medicine Market with people selling lots kinds of herbs, medicinal sea products, and medicinal animal products in eastern Xian on the way to the Mausoleum of Qin Shi Huang Di that has the Terracotta Warriors. It is a good place to buy herbs economically that are hard to find in the US and other places.
The Xian Wanshou Road Chinese Medicine Market 西安万寿路药材市场 is in eastern Xian on the way to the Terracotta Warriors along Wanshou Road. It is a traditional market where peasants and wholesalers sell bags and bags and boxes and boxes of interesting herbs, medicines and medicinal foods. Some of the stuff like dried seahorses may seem strange. Other stuff like ginseng (人参, rénshēn) and ginger (姜, jiāng) might be more familiar, and you might be surprised at the prices you can get for raw ginseng root compared to packaged ginseng in the US. If you like spices such as cinnamon (肉桂, ròuguì) or licorice (甘草, gāncǎo), you can buy bags of various spices in the natural form.
While at the market, shop around for lowest prices on products because the sellers might try to sell at high prices to tourists.
Here are suggested healthful Chinese food and medicines that you can try that is very beneficial but expensive and hard to find in the West.
Ginseng (人参, rénshēn) shouldn’t be used regularly, but it strengthens health and stamina. It comes either as whole roots or cut up or sliced roots at these kinds of markets. Of all the common Chinese herbs, it is about the most expensive.
Goji Berries or Wolfberries (枸杞子, gouqizi) is highly recommended as a nutritious fruit that has a lot of healthful benefits and increases strength and stamina and that doesn’t have known side affects. It can be commonly eaten like other kinds of berries. Goji Berries are difficult to find in the US, but are commonly eaten as a food in China. The Ningxia area relatively close to Xian is known for good quality berries and is a major center for the production of the berry. However, be careful about pesticides. These delicate berries should taste very good and sweet, not bitter from too much use of chemicals.
Hawthorn Berries (山楂, shanzha) is a tart little fruit that looks and tastes much like a crabapple, but the benefit for stamina, health, and the heart is amazing. It is known as a good food to eat for those with problems with weak hearts, poor circulation or angina.
Travel: On Wanshou Road on the way to Emperor Qin Shi Huangdi’s mausoleum and Terracotta Warriors. You can show the taxi driver or guide this address: 西安万寿路药材市场. China Highlight can help you design a trip to visit thisand other sights in xian.
Hours: about 9 am until 6 pm, depending on the weather.
I updated this article on February 27, 2014
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