Yin Chen

Reviewed on 6/11/2021
Other Name(s):

Armoise à Balais, Armoise Capillaire, Artemisia capillaris, Artemisia Officinalis, Artemisia scoparia, Capillary Wormwood, Ceinture de Saint-Jean, Chiu, Couronne de Saint-Jean, Herbe à Cent Goûts, In Chen, Inchin-Ko-To, Inchinko, Injin, Kawara-Yomogi, Kyunchinho, Rumput Roman, Shih Yin Ch'en, Yin Ch'en, Yin Ch'en Hao, Yin Chen Hao, Yin-Chen Wormwood.


Yin chen is an herb. The parts that grow above the ground are used to make medicine.

Yin chen is used to treat liver disease (hepatitis), gallstones, and high cholesterol. It is also used to stimulate the flow of bile from the gallbladder.

Yin chen is used for brain damage in newborns (kernicterus) caused by bile pigments in the blood (jaundice), fever and chills, bitter taste in the mouth, chest tightness, flank pain, dizziness, nausea, and loss of appetite. In addition, it is used for headache, constipation, painful urination, itching, tumors, mucus in the nose and throat, joint pain (rheumatism), painful menstrual periods, malaria, and muscle spasms.

In Chinese and Japanese herbal combinations, yin chen is used for jaundice with fever, painful urination, constipation, and stomach bloating.

Yin chen is contained in inchin-ko-to, a Kampo (Chinese/Japanese) medicine used to treat hepatitis C.

How does it work?

Yin chen is thought to contain chemicals that stimulate bile flow. This can help to treat gallstones. The oils in yin chen might also reduce fever, decrease swelling, increase urination, and kill fungus and bacteria.


Next to red peppers, you can get the most vitamin C from ________________. See Answer

Uses & Effectiveness

Insufficient Evidence to Rate Effectiveness for...

  • Hepatitis.
  • Yellowing of the skin due to bile pigment (jaundice).
  • Gallstones.
  • High cholesterol levels.
  • Hepatitis C infections.
  • Fever and chills.
  • Bitter taste in the mouth.
  • Chest tightness.
  • Flank pain.
  • Dizziness.
  • Nausea.
  • Loss of appetite.
  • Headache.
  • Constipation.
  • Painful urination.
  • Itching.
  • Joint pain.
  • Painful menstrual periods.
  • Malaria.
  • Spasms.
  • Increasing bile flow from the gallbladder.
  • Other conditions.
More evidence is needed to rate the effectiveness of yin chen for these uses.

Natural Medicines Comprehensive Database rates effectiveness based on scientific evidence according to the following scale: Effective, Likely Effective, Possibly Effective, Possibly Ineffective, Likely Ineffective, and Insufficient Evidence to Rate (detailed description of each of the ratings).

Side Effects

Yin chen seems safe for most adults when taken by mouth. But don't attempt to treat liver or gallstone problems without medical advice.

Yin chen can cause nausea, bloating, dizziness, and heart problems.


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Special Precautions & Warnings

Pregnancy and breast-feeding: It’s UNSAFE to use yin chen if you are pregnant or breast-feeding. Don’t use it.

Children: Yin chen might be UNSAFE for children. Children under the age of 12 years should not use it except under the care of a physician.

Allergy to ragweed and related plants: Yin chen may cause an allergic reaction in people who are sensitive to the Asteraceae/Compositae family. Members of this family include ragweed, chrysanthemums, marigolds, daisies, and many others. If you have allergies, be sure to check with your healthcare provider before taking yin chen.


LithiumInteraction Rating: Moderate Be cautious with this combination.Talk with your health provider.

Yin chen might have an effect like a water pill or "diuretic." Taking yin chen might decrease how well the body gets rid of lithium. This could increase how much lithium is in the body and result in serious side effects. Talk with your healthcare provider before using this product if you are taking lithium. Your lithium dose might need to be changed.


The appropriate dose of yin chen depends on several factors such as the user's age, health, and several other conditions. At this time there is not enough scientific information to determine an appropriate range of doses for yin chen. Keep in mind that natural products are not always necessarily safe and dosages can be important. Be sure to follow relevant directions on product labels and consult your pharmacist or physician or other healthcare professional before using.

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Bensky D, Gamble A, Kaptchuk T. Chinese Herbal Medicine Materia Medica. Seattle, WA: Eastland Press, 1996:214-6.

Chevallier A. The Encyclopedia of Medicinal Plants. New York, NY: DK Publishing. 1996:170.

Huang KC. The Pharmacology of Chinese Herbs. 2nd ed. Boca Raton, FL: CRC Press, LLC, 1999:258.

Lee J, Chae K, Ha J, et al. Regulation of obesity and lipid disorders by herbal extracts from Morus alba, Melissa officinalis, and Artemisia capillaris in high-fat diet-induced obese mice. J Ethnopharmacol 2008;115:263-70. View abstract.

Yamamoto M, Miura N, Ohtake N, et al. Genipin, a metabolite derived from the herbal medicine Inchin-ko-to, and suppression of fas-induced lethal liver apoptosis in mice. Gastroenterol 2000;118:380-9. View abstract.

Yamamoto M, Ogawa K, Morita M, et al. The herbal medicine Inchin-ko-to inhibits liver cell apoptosis induced by transforming growth factor beta 1. Hepatology 1996;23:552-9. View abstract.

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