It takes something truly extraordinary to last for 5,000 years....
While Egyptians built the ancient pyramids and 2,200 years before Hippocrates became the father of western medicine, Chinese physicians began using their newly developed alphabet to carefully record and advance their treasured medicinal legacy.
Throughout these ancient medical writings, three superior and legendary health tonics consistently emerge: ginseng, ling tzi, and gojiberries
. Ginseng was too expensive and too powerful for daily use, and ling tzi was difficult to find. But gojiberries were readily available and mild enough for daily use by people of all ages for a variety of symptoms.
The most frequent references to gojiberries - or wolfberries as they are also called - in early Chinese medical texts
extolled gojiberries for strengthening the eyes, liver, and kidneys, as well as fortifying the "qi" (chi) or life force. The well-respected medical book, Shen Nung Ben Tsao (475-221 B.C.), noted wolfberry benefits ranging from replenishing vital essences to strengthening and restoring major organs.
Li Shiz Hen, regarded by many as the greatest herbalist of all time, compiled the well-renowned physicians handbook (Ben Cao Gang Mu A.D. 1596). The book reports, "Taking in Chinese wolfberry regularly may regulate the flow of vital energy and strengthen the physique, which can lead to longevity." The book also cites a very compelling story.
"The Bao Shou herb store recorded a wolfberry elixir that promotes longevity ... barefooted man named Zhang passed the formula of this elixir to an elderly person at Yi Shi County, who followed the recipe and lived for over a hundred years. The elderly man could walk extremely fast as if he was flying. His gray hair turned black again ... The herb is mellow and can be taken often to eliminate excessive heat in the body and will also improve vision."
There is also another story of a woman who lived during the Tang Dynasty (A.D. 618-907) who lived over three hundred years and claimed her secret to longevity was the wolfberry.
More recent evidence cites the magazine Domestic and Foreign, which published a story in the 1950s about a great herbal master Li Qingyun who lived over 200 years and died in 1930. In his life account, he revealed the secret of his longevity was gained from his mentor who told him to take 5 grams of wolfberries everyday. "From then on I became healthy and agile. I can walk a hundred li [a li equals half a kilometer] and not feel tired. I became better in strength and stamina than the average person."
With all of its historical backing and reputation, it's no wonder that the legendary wolfberry is a Chinese national treasure. But there's one place that gojiberries are celebrated and revered above all other - China's Ningxia Province.
Ningxia grows the kind of gojiberries that legends are made of, and not surprisingly, Ningxia residents are their own best advertising. The Chinese national census recently reported that the number of Ningxia residents living more than 100 years exceeds
the national average by an amazing 400 percent
. Ningxia locals freely admit their health secret lies in the locally grown gojiberries.
The Huang He (Yellow) River originates in the Himalayan Mountains and flows through the Ningxia Province. For centuries, the river has created a unique, mineral-rich, super fertile silt-water flood plain found nowhere else on earth. It is the perfect place to grow gojiberries. Locals call it "China's herbal medicine valley" and protect it by meeting all of the stringent rules necessary to be awarded the prestigious "Green Certificate,"
the equivalent of the USDA's Organic Certification.
All of this care is paying off with a fabulous product. The Xinhaua News Agency reported that the Ningxia variety of Lycium barbarum "is far superior
to ordinary Chinese wolfberry in both tonic effects and economic results." Due to their superior quality, many medical studies done on the wolfberry have specified the use of the Ningxia wolfberries.
As with other plants, the Chinese wolfberry has a number of species or varieties. Of the eighty different species of wolfberries worldwide, the Lycium barbarum from Ningxia has by far the highest levels of immune-stimulating polysaccharides.
Ningxia Wolfberries Win Prestigious Awards
The Ningxia Wolfberry Group takes great pride in the nine national and international gold prizes won by its famous wolfberry. The Ningxia wolfberry has won three gold prizes in the China Agricultural Fair and a gold prize in the Malaysia International Food Fair.
To honor wolfberries' past, present, and future, Ningxia residents annually hold a two-week festival.
Gojiberries Are a Chinese National Treasure
The good health and vitality of the Ningxia elderly has long been attributed to gojiberries. To the people of the province, a bowl of fresh wolfberries a day
is part of life. Its health benefits have been extolled for generations. In fact, even today the Ningxia gojifberry is considered a national treasure.
In ancient times, the Chinese people were said to have three cherished tonics for health. They were ginseng, ling tzi, and wolfberries.
According to ancient Chinese texts, gojiberries:
Rediscovering Ancient Longevity Secrets
- Nourish the yin
- Support the blood
- Help support the kidneys and liver
- Strengthen the eyes
- Fortify the muscles and bones
- Enhance the "chi" or life force
D. Gary Young has made it his life's mission to search the world for the secrets of long life, health, energy, and vitality. In 1993, Gary Young was introduced by Cyrus McKell, a professor of Botany at Weber State University, to a Chinese scientist who was visiting the United States.
This Chinese scientist, Dr. Songqiao Chao, told Gary about a simple, delicious-tasting berry with amazing health benefits. He said that Chinese gojiberries had been used for thousands of years in China to treat a wide variety of ailments.
What's more, Dr. Chao related that the people who consumed them on a regular basis lived remarkably healthy lives for 100-plus years. This information led Gary on an inspiring odyssey to the Ningxia region of China located on the Inner Mongolian plateau.
In Ningxia, Gary investigated the tiny red fruit known as the Ningxia wolfberry. He agreed that this small berry was the remarkable source of the vibrant health and long lives of the Chinese people of the region.
Gary Young Is First to Import Wolfberries into U.S. in Commercial Quantities
Gary Young — through Young Living Essential Oils — was the first to import Ningxia gojiberries into the United States on a commercial basis.
Dr. Chao's daughter, Sue Chao, assisted Gary Young in bringing the Ningxia gojiberry to the United States.
In 1996, when Gary Young first attempted to import large quantities of the Ningxia wolfberry powder, it was quarantined by U.S. Customs as an unknown "peculiar" substance. Customs agents said that it had never before been imported to the U.S. in commercial quantities.