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Pine pollen has been officially recorded from the earliest Tang materia medica/ Xin Xiu Ben Cao (A.D. 657-659) in Tang dynasty to modern China Pharmacopeia with a history of more than 1500 years in China. And Traditional Chinese Medicine and traditional health preservation study share the same theory and both believe “All the herbs could be medicines” and “Medicine and food shares homological origin”; therefore the application of pine pollen always accompany with the development of Traditional Chinese Medicine. Modern studies and researches on pine pollen not only further prove the conclusion of Traditional Chinese Medicine on pine pollen but also add something new.

The Applications In Traditional Chinese Medicine
The first pharmacological work is Shen Nong’s Herbal Classic/ Shen Nong Ben Cao Jing completed during Qin and Han dynasty(about A.D. 200). The book are composed by 3 sections and recorded 365 kinds medicines including 252 kinds herbal medicines, 67 kinds animal medicines and 46 kinds mineral medicines. And Shen Nong’s Herbal Classic is the first pharmacological work that recorded pine pollen; and its concise expressions make it the essence of Traditional Chinese Medicine.

And medical experts in the following dynasties added some new information on basis of the original version, and there are more than 30 versions developed afterthat. The enlarged edition in Tang Dynasty named Tang Materia Medica(A.D. 657-659) has been the first national pharmacopeia in the world which is 883 years earlier than first European Nuremberg Pharmacopoeia published in 1542 by government. Although there are other pharmacological works earlier than Tang Materia Medica(A.D. 657-659) has proven that pine pollen being used before Tang Dynasty, while Tang Materia Medica(A.D. 657-659) was the first official pharmacological work to record the applications of pine pollen in China.

Records In Pharmacological Works/Pharmacopoeia In Different Periods In China
Shen Nong’s Herbal Classic in Han Dynasty (about A.D. 200)
“Pine pollen tastes sweet and mild with no toxicity, mainly helping with vicious Qi from cold and fever in heart and abdomen, inducing urination, eliminating extravasated blood, nourishing Qi, strenghting energy, extending lifespan for long-term consumption.”
Tang Materia Medica in Tang Dynasty (A.D. 657-659)
“Pine pollen also names pine yellow because it looks like cattail pollen, long-term intaking can lighten the weight and its treatment effect is even better than pine bark, leaf and resin”.
Expanded Herbal Foundation/Ben Cao Yan Yi in Song Dynasty(A.D 1116)
“The yellow powder of the pine flower was named as pine yellow, people in mountain area collect in time and make it as a delicious pastry. However it can’t be preserved for a long time, it was seldom transported to a far-away place. Pine yellow looks like cattail pollen but with a lighter taste, it can treat postnatal high fever, headache, dry mouth&lips, agitation, thirst, muddle&unpleasant mood as well.”
Compendium of Materia Medica /Ben Cao Gang Mu in Ming Dynasty(A.D 1590)
“Pine pollen tasting sweet, mild, with no toxicity, running cardiopulmonary, nourishing Qi, expelling wind, stopping bleeding and brewing wine as well.”
New Compilation Of Materia Medica/Ben Cao Cong Xin in Qing Dynasty(A.D 1757)
“Pine pollen is effective to cure various of variola, sores, hurts as well as rotten wound which can’t scab by itself.”
Concise Compendium Of Materia Medica/Jing Bian Ben Cao Gang Mu (2010)
Shizhen Li(writer of Compendium Of Materia Medica) described that pine tree is tall and straight, with rough and thick bark like fish scale, blooming during February and March with 4 to 5 inches length flower, flower naming pine yellow, the fruit being in pig’ heart shape and naming pinecone. Pine yellow or pine pollen tastes sweet with a mild feature and no toxicity. It can nourish heart and lung, tonify qi, expelling wind and stopping bleeding.
Chinese Pharmacopoeia(Edition 1985)
Pine pollen is dried pollen collected from fringes of Pinus Massoniana Lamb., Pinus Tabulaeformis Carr., and Pinus Yunnanensis Franch when pine trees bloom at the beginning of spring.
Feature: light yellow fine powder, light weight, smell and taste, with smooth feeling when entwisted by fingers.
Identification: Under microscope, raw pine pollen is with elliptic cell with 45-55 micrometer length, 29-40 micrometer diameter, smooth surface and inflated gasbags at both sides which shows obvious reticular texture and polygonal mesh shape.
Property: Sweet, mild, medicine for liver and spleen
Main functions: Eliminating dampness, with function of astringency and hemostasis, treatment of eczema, impetigo, skin erosion,dripping ichor, traumatic bleeding, diaper-induced dermatitis.
Usage and Dosage: External use
Shelf: Store in dry place and keep away from moisture
Detailed Explanation of 800 Kinds Chinese Medicine(2009)
Name: Pine pollen, pine pollen flower,pine yellow
Source: Pinus Massoniana Lamb., Pinus Tabulaeformis Carr., and Pinus Yunnanensis Franch mainly in Zhejiang,Jiansu, Lia ning, Jilin, Hubei, YunnanProvinces.
Collection and procession: Collect the pine Catkins when pine trees bloom during April and May and then naturally dry the pine pollen catkins to eliminate the impurities.
Specification and character: Pine pollen is light yellow fine powder and shown as tiny round cells under microscope. It is with light weight and easily to lifted in the air, with sense of smooth, mostly floating in the water, lighter smell and taste. The high quality pine pollen is those yellow, fine and smooth pollen with not impurities and great fluidity.
Identification: Under microscope, raw pine pollen is with elliptic cell with 45-55 micrometer length, 29-40 micrometer diameter, smooth surface and inflated gasbags at both sides which shows obvious reticular texture and polygonal mesh shape.
Property: Sweet and mild in property; medicine for liver and spleen. Tonify spleen&liver yang which could nourish liver and eliminate the wind, also with function of astringency and hemostasis.
Ancient and modern applications:
1.Tonifying spleen and qi, having great effect on gastropathy, duodenal ulcer as well as chronic constipation. The general dosage is 3 grams mixed with hot water. It also the function of anti-aging and senile diseases prevention such as prostatitis, prostatic hyperplasia, erectile dysfunction, climacteric syndrome, constipation, liver cirrhosis and fatty liver.
2. Eliminate inner wind. It can help wind dizziness, headspin, swelling, numbness and skin diseases. The method of application suggested is to dissove the pine pollen with certain concentration ethanol(liqueur).
3. Used for alcoholism, headache, dizziness, obstructed throat, diarrhea with clear intestinal juice and withering mental condition. The typical TCM formula contains pine pollen(30g), dried tangerine peel(15g), coptis chinensis root(15g), liquorice root(6g) and stir frying these ingredients and mill to powder, 6g a time twice a day(morning and evening).
4. Used for lingering dysentery with the dosage of 10g pine pollen taken by water in which rice has been cooked.
5. Used for infant eczema. External use the mixture of pine pollen, calamine and egg oil on infected part, 3 times a day.
6. Used to treat diaper dermatitis because its hygroscopic effect. Smear the pine pollen on infected skin.
7. Used to prevent traumatic bleeding because its stypticity function. External smear the pine pollen on the trauma or wound.
8. Facial beauty function mixed with poria cocos and whitish honey.
Usage and dosage:
Internal use: Decocted with water or soaked in liqueur with 3-6g pine pollen
External use: Smear on the affected part after mixing with liquid
Modern researches:
Compositions of pine pollen include grease, pigment, protein, more than 20 kinds amino acid  like methionine, lysine, valine, threonine, leucine and so on, 14 kinds vitamins, 24 kinds mineral element like iron, phosphorus, sulphur, selenium, potassium, calcium,zinc, manganese, copper and so on, 18 kinds natural active enzymes, plant hormone, aromatic compound and so on.

Pharmacologic actions include immunity enhancement, anti-aging function, lowering blood fat, digestive function improvement, inhibit of Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia, exciting hematopoietic function, promoting&strengthening the growth, expansion of coronary artery, increasing vascular toughness and protecting function on experimental hepatic injury.

Records Of Pine Pollen In Health Preservation And Dietary Therapy Applications In Different Periods In China
As one of the most important contents and methods of China’ traditional health preservation study, dietary therapy science has a long history. Purpose of dietary therapy is very clear to prevent the diseases before it occurs. Huangdi Neijing(during the Warring States period, 770-221 B.C) as one of the existed TCM theory books has discussed the principle of dietary therapy. Also in the Pre-Qin Period (Before 221 B.C.) “Dietary Therapy Science” had been recorded in book Zhou Li/ Rites of Zhou in which there were lots of philosophical comments on the relationship between drinks&food and diseases, which became part of foundation of Chinese medicine theory of prevention the disease before it occurs. From Tang Dynasty(618-907 A.D.), there are many kinds of editions of Shi Liao Ben Cao/ Dietetic Materia Medica which recorded different kind of food-medicines, in which there were a lot of records of pine pollen being used in soup, cakes, and brewing wine as a significant food-medicine.
Shi Liao Ben Cao/ Dietetic Materia Medica in Tang Dynasty
Pine Pollen Honey Juice that recorded in this book describing the production process as mixing 5 kilograms honey with 0.5 kilogram pine pollen which could promote the facial looks after a long-term intaking.
Pine Pollen Eulogia by Sushi in Song Dynasty
Internal use or external use of mixture of 0.5 kilogram pine pollen, 400 grams cattail pollen, 50 grams sophora flower, 50 grams apricot blossom and 1 kilograms honey could keep a red and white face(description of a pleasant appearance condition in China) to the old.
Shan Jia Qing Gong in Song Dynasty.
The production process of pine pollen cakes was mentioned in this book: People collect pine flower powder when pine tree blooming in spring and add it with water and rice flour, seal the mixture up for several days then model it according to the shape of ancient dragon cakes. This cake not only smells sweet and tastes pleasant but also it can make appearance more beautiful and can help people’s will.
Qun Fang Pu in Ming Dynasty
“When the pine caktins blooms during February or March, flower length arrives at three or four Chinese inch. And people spread out the ground with a cloth when the pine pollen is ripe, strike and collect its stamen named pine yellow. It can expel wind, stop bleeding and cure dysentery. Added with brown sugar it can make cakes full of nice smell, and the cakes are suggested to be taken soon because the shelf life is short.
Sui yi Ju Ying Shi Pu in Qing Dynasty
“Collect the yellow powder on pine pollen timely and mix with white granulated sugar as the cake stuffing, the cakes taste nice and have the function of keeping warm; or the powder could be take alone with hot water which could treat the dysentery.”
TCM Dietotherapy Collection/Zhong yi Shi Liao Fang Quan Lu(2000)
Pine yellow cake
Ingredients: 6g pine pollen powder, 100g flour, q.s. wheat flour
Production process: Collect the pine catkins in Spring, eliminate the impurities and then mix with honey as the cake stuffing; mix wheat flour with water as the cake skin, stuff the pine pollen stuffing inside and then steam the cakes.
Usage: Taken in the morning and evening
Benefits: Heath-care and prolong life
Function: Help all kinds of aging conditions.

Pine pollen application history in Japan, South Korea and North Korea
In ancient times, Japan, Sourth Korea and North Korea were greatly influenced by traditional Chinese culture. Many famous medical works like Tang materia medica/ Xin Xiu Ben Cao and Compendium of Materia Medica have been first introduced to Japan, South Korea and North Korea in a few years after they completed, and these great medical works not only enriched the medical theories but also made great contributions to the people’ health of above 3 countries. In the history of above 3 countries, the development of medical science and health preservation was always affected by theories of TCM and Health Preservation; even today this influence still plays an important role.

There is an old saying in Japan “イナバの白兎がガマの稲綿にくるまった” which means the softness of pollen is even superior to rice, cotton and fur of rabbit. In ancient Japan, pine pollen was first used as a cure to many diseases in Japanese palace and among the common people. And from the treating records available at present, we can found the prescriptions are from ancient Chinese medical works. There are also records that ancient Japanese people consume pine pollen, especially the residences in Ibaraki Prefecture Japan with a long history of intaking pine pollen.

The application of pine pollen in Modern Japan is much more popular. The Japanese food is famous for its strictness of selecting raw materials and delicate making process. And the Pine Pollen Powder Cold Noodles has been a featured food for many Japanese restaurants at present which can show the importance of pine pollen application in Japan.

In the field of medicine, the healing effect that pine pollen on Prostate Disease has been discussed and researched the most such as Doctor Saito in Urology Department Nagasaki University Japan who has done a lot of researches and experiments and promoted the application of pine pollen in clinical medicine.

Japanese medical studies believe pine pollen has the function of anti-aging, blackening the beard and hair, elimilating the freckles and skin scars as the “Source of Beauty”. Especially they believe pollen has special function to blacken the gray hair, long-term consumption of pollen to promote the hair growth and turn the gray hair to black as an ideal hair-beauty agent. Practice has proven that an obvious effect can be seen for hair beauty after intaking pine pollen around half a year.

Both South Korea and North Korea belonged to old Joseon Dynasty and the family name of Chosun Dynasty governor is “Li” therefore it also named as “Li Dynasty” which has ruled Korean peninsula for 519 years from 1392 to1910. And during this period the famous medical work as Dongui Bogam (동의보감) is a Korean book compiled by the royal physician, Heo Jun (1539 – 1615) and was first published in 1613 during the Joseon Dynasty of Korea. The title literally means “Mirror of Eastern Medicine”. The book is regarded important in traditional Korean medicine and one of the classics of Oriental medicine today. As of July 2009, it is on UNESCO’s Memory of the World Programme. It is expected to be translated in English by 2013. The original was written in Chinese alphabet and only part of it was transcribed in Korean for wide nursery use, as only officials understood old Chinese. The value of this book to Korea medical development is what Compendium of Materia Medica to Chinese. In this book, pine pollen is also recoded and described as” pine pollen is sweet, mild, heart and lung nourishment, qi tonifying medicine and with function to stop bleeding.”

In another works named Annal of Joseon Dynasty(The Annals of the Joseon Dynasty, also known as The True Record of the Joseon Dynasty, are the annual records of the Joseon Dynasty of Korea, which were kept from 1413 to 1865 and recorded the information concerning political, military, diplomacy, law, medical treatment, food, religion and other aspects.), there are a lot of records of pine pollen as a necessary daily aulic food ingredient which is applied to cakes, tea foods and brewing the wine. Till now, such pine pollen tea food that originated from royal palace is still a well-known food in South Korea.

Another paragraph in this book records that pine pollen collection has been an imposed work for all the national people which invested a lot of labor force each year as a result the monks had to be forced to collect the pine pollen in the mountains when the labor force was not enough. And pine pollen has been a tribute to royal palace with a large demand at that time.

As an addition, the pine pollen that Japan, South Korea and North Korea adopted in ancient time is from Pinus Densiflora Siebold et Zuccarini after many researches were conducted. Pinus densiflora, or Japanese red pine, has a wide distribution in korean peninsula that includes Japan, Korea, northeastern China(Heilongjiang, Jilin, Liaoning, Shandong) and the extreme southeast of Russia (southern Primorsky Krai). In modern times, besides applied in medical products and upscale tea food, pine pollen has been widely used in cosmetic industries in South Korea, there being a lot of brands launched a series of pine pollen theme cosmetic products in recent years.

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