The name “Wu Wei Zi” (五味子) for Schisandra is indeed quite unique. According to the “Xin Xiu Ben Cao,” a Chinese medicinal text from the Tang Dynasty, it describes a plant whose fruit has a sweet and sour taste in the skin and pulp, while the seeds are bitter with a hint of spiciness, and the overall flavor is salty. This distinctive combination of “sour, sweet, bitter, spicy, and salty” flavors makes Schisandra truly remarkable.
What Is Schisandra and Its 5 Major Benefits？
Schisandra, also known as the Five-Flavor Berry, is a unique fruit native to northeastern China, Korea, Japan, and Eastern Russia. It belongs to the Schisandra genus within the Magnolia family. The two most common species are Schisandra chinensis, known as Northern Schisandra, and Schisandra sphenanthera, known as Southern Schisandra. These are the two varieties approved by the Ministry of Health and Welfare for use in food ingredients.
Key Active Ingredients in Schisandra:
From a traditional Chinese medicine perspective, Schisandra’s flavors are associated with different organs and their functions. It is believed that the five flavors can be linked to the following organs: