Mugwort it is
In “TCM explained 1” (or should I say debunked…) let’s look at Chinese foot bath.
There are different kinds of the artemisia plant.
Wormwood (Artemisia absinthum) and mugwort both belong to the artemisia family. Even when it comes to mugwort, there are different kinds, such as artemisia vulgaris and artemisia argyii. Artemisia argyii is specifically growing in the northern temperate zones of Asia. It is the one which we use in China. Wormwood is seldom used in China.
Artemisia argyii, commonly known as silvery wormwood or Chinese mugwort, is a herbaceous perennial plant. It is known in Chinese as àicǎo (艾草) or àiyè (艾叶).
The edible plant mugwort can be confused with wormwood (Artemisia absinthium). Examination of the leaves is how to tell the difference. Mugwort leaves are green on the top and white underneath, and they have pointed tips and purplish stems, while wormwood leaves have a silvery top and bottom and the flowers are more showy.
It can warm the meridians, stop bleeding, disperse cold and stop pain.
See here my foot bath at home:
Artemisia argyii is used in moxibustion and can also be used in food bath.
In China for moxibustion and foot bath we exclusively use Artemisia argyii. More about moxibustion in another post, coming soon.
All kinds of plants might be used in foot baths but not wormwood.
Singapore shop Kin Teck Tong puts it correctly
Kin Teck Tong
Chinese Mugwort, also known as Artemisia Argyii, has been used for centuries in TCM treatments (Moxibustion) and in food due to its medicinal properties. Chinese Mugwort is known for its numerous benefits and highly recommended by physicians for properties such as dispelling dampness, stimulating blood circulation and enhancing women’s health.
Other common uses for Mugwort include treating cold hands and feet, gingivitis, intestinal problems such as constipation, chills, and insomnia.
Mugwort Foot Bath: Singapore’s humid weather all year round can result in high level of moisture in the air. As such, dampness accumulates in the body and causes symptoms such as dizziness, fatigue, swelling, poor appetite, joint pain, irritable skin and so on. Using Mugwort Foot Bath, body can be reconditioned, and dampness will be dispelled at the same time, alleviating any symptoms caused by the excessive damp.
Many Internet shops and articles are wrong
Google search makes it confusing as one finds often “Moxa Mugwort Herb Wormwood Dried Leaves Cake Foot Bath” and “Moxa Mugwort Cake Chinese Herb Wormwood Foot Bath Soak SPA Chinese Medicine Health Care Massage”.
See a sample of online sale here. The foot bath is said to:
Remove toxins, soften blood vessels, promoting blood circulation.
Relieve fatigue, promote the blood running, have strong immunity.
Instant and long-term relief: cracking, itching, burning, caused by toe/skin fungus
Cures most jock itch and ringworm. Antiseptic and anti-bacterial properties to deodorize.
Reduces inflammation, pain, and itching. Softens corns, calluses & rough heels.
Relieving foot fatigue, detumescence and acesodyne, promoting sleeping.
Enhance Immunity. Expand blood vessel, reduce the blood pressure.
In the above change wormwood to mugwort!
And here another one: Wormwood foot bath
It is wrong – change wormwood to mugwort to be correct in the following text:
Wormwood has anti-inflammatory, relieving cough and asthma, dispelling cold and dampness, anti-allergic and hemostasis effects. Many people are accustomed to soaking their feet in hot water with wormwood.
What are the benefits of hot water foot bath with wormwood?
Foot soaking can relieve fatigue and improve sleep quality. When it comes to foot soaking, wormwood is the “golden partner”.
Soaking feet in hot water can promote local blood supply and help to expel dampness and cold in the body; coupled with wormwood, it can open up the twelve meridians and regulate the balance of yin and yang. If the meridians are unobstructed, the qi and blood are also unblocked.
The main symptoms of strong cold or false fire are sore throat, stomatitis and oral ulcers. You might as well boil the wormwood in a pot, take out the liquid and soak your feet until the whole body sweats.
Wormwood can have antiviral and antibacterial effects, and at the same time can enhance resistance, insisting on soaking feet in hot water with wormwood can treat athlete’s foot and athlete’s foot.