Monthly Archives: August 2013

Are You Dehydrated?

Is it a myth or truth that to survive dehydration, drink your own urine? Answer: Truth. To determine the safety of the urine, remember two things: urine is 95% water, unfortunately it can save you only a few days and it is sterile (it is your own pee).

As you can tell, what my point is that I don’t like drinking Pee, I can’t, I’d rather drink bitter herbs. If you don’t drink water of the average of 8 – 8oz. glasses a day then you might consider Urine. Dehydration has been an ongoing issue for a lot of us. Dehydration causes lots of symptoms such as dizziness, decreased blood pressure, headaches, unconsciousness and in extreme cases, death.

How can you avoid dehydration? First, drink the minimum 8 glasses of water a day. Then, avoid alcohol consumption, especially when it is very warm, because alcohol increases water loss and impairs your ability to sense early signs associated with dehydration. Also, pay attention when you sweat or are exercising, and drink more water.

How do you know you’re drinking enough water? One way is to look at the color of your urine. It is best with no color and is odorless. Pungent and strong in color is a sign of dehydration or kidney issues. If it is fruity smelling urine it is a sign of Diabetes.

DTF Pills are formulated to support and cleanse the kidney. DTF and Taifu plus are taken together as a prevention and maintenance of diabetes, and promotes weight loss and overall health.

The kidney is situated in the lowest position. It is associated with the phase water (moisture) and it is in charge of storing essence (jing). Just like water was the first substance to emerge from heavenly oneness, the kidney is the source of human body, the initial sprout of physical life.

Remember to take care of your Kidneys and stay hydrated!


How Traditional Chinese Herbal Pills Are Made – Part 1

1. Selecting the finest ingredients

Selecting the finest quality herb ingredients is the first and the most important step in producing Traditional Chinese herbal pills. The herbalist, Juliana, personally checks each herb ingredient to make sure that only the highest quality herbs go into our herbal pills. It is relatively easy for her to distinguish the high grade herbs (more potent) from low grade herbs by the smell and the appearance of the herbs. However, the task of inspection would become extremely difficult if ingredients were all in powder form. It is simply impossible to guarantee the quality and the purity of the ingredients. There is always a possibility of contamination with impure or inferior ingredients. This is why we are strongly against using powdered herbs as ingredients for our herbal pills. Grinding herbs ourselves at our own facility is very time consuming and labor intensive, but it is a necessary step towards producing the highest quality products.

2. Grinding herbs into ultra fine powder

Vertical MillPin MillFine Powder Grinding Machine






  1. On Left: We pulverize or crush the herbs into coarse ground herbs using vertical mill.
  2. Middle: Run the coarse ground herbs through Pin mill to fine powder.
  3. Right: Finally, the Fine Powder Grinder is used to produce ultra fine powder. The texture of the ultra fine powder is very similar to that of corn starch.

These next pictures the difference in the way herbs were ground into powder. The one on the left is the boat – shaped old fashioned metal grinding tool. Inside the boat is a V-shaped track where the wheel rolls back and forth to grind the herbs.

Old Grinding toolFind Powder Grinding Chamber
The picture on the right shows the inside chamber of the modern Fine Powder Grinder. Two wheels are attached at the both end of the axle and orbit around on the circular track continuously to grind herbs. The grinding concept is the same. However, a modern powder grinder works much more efficiently and the outcome (the fineness of the powder) is beyond the comparison.

Though this is a very time consuming process, grinding raw ingredients into ultra fine particles is critical in making traditional herbal pill for following reasons:

  1. Ultra fine particles help the assimilation of the herbs by the digestive system, therefore works immediately upon entering intestinal tract.
  2. Ultra fine particles are easy to bind and eliminate the need for chemical binding agents.
  3. Ultra fine particles help achieve smooth polished appearance of the pills. This is why most of our herbal pills, including Taifu, E15, DTF No.9 and others have nice smooth shiny texture.

DTF_L No.9_L Taifu_L






In the next month’s issue, we will talk about purifying the honey as well as the process of forming pills. –  Kaz Isogai

How Volunteering Can Change Your Life

Living in America, we take so much for granted. We have access to food, clean water, places to live and help if needed for those experiencing hard times. But we often fall short on surveys of the most happy countries in the world. Why are we unhappy with our lives? Is it too much stuff? Too much marketing showing us what we should want?

I don’t know what the answer is, but I can tell you how volunteering has changed my life. I’m a much happier person now that volunteering is a part of my life.

My family lives in an affordable part of Seattle, which means the streets are littered with trash and cars parked on the street are often broken into. I remember when we moved into our home feeling grateful for a new place to live that we could make our own, but then getting overwhelmed by all the problems with the neighborhood.

VolunteerPhotoThen, one day, there was a sign at the local playground for a project to build a new playground. The one they had was old, and some bolts were missing from the merry-go-round and swing set. The paint had worn off, and there was some rust here and there. My son couldn’t safely play on part of it. So, I naturally decided to attend the meeting. We needed a new playground.

What I didn’t expect was to jump into the leadership team to organize building the playground with 275 volunteers in one day! A non-profit organization, Ka-Boom!, works with communities and matches with donors like Home Depot to playground builders to do it. I won’t bore you with the details, but it was a summer long project just to get organized for the one eventful day of building!
From that volunteer project, I got to know 5 neighbors really well, their children, their stories, and had new friends. I learned about myself: how capable I am at problem solving, being creative, communicating with strangers, and working with a big team. It changed my life.

The playground was built in 2009, when my son was 3 and my daughter was just over 1-years-old. To this day they call it their playground, because Mommy and Daddy helped build it.

Since that first big volunteer project, I’ve been hooked. I have volunteered at my son’s school, in the neighborhood and community garden. Nothing quite as big as the Playground Build, but I have continued to grow and learn about my community. I see neighbors around the neighborhood and know them by name. I am now proud to call this my home.

I know some people who have gone overseas and to South America to volunteer. They have stories about their lives and perspectives changing. What I have learned is that you don’t have to leave the country for 2 weeks and work in a refugee camp to get the same life changing experience. There are hundreds of organizations and groups here in America who are making a difference. No matter how much time you have to give, there’s something for everyone!

The best way to get started is to make a list of the things you love, or care about. Then, look for groups in your community who are already working toward those things. What if there isn’t one? Well, you could find a group doing something in a different city or neighborhood and visit them. See what they are doing and start your own group! Really, the possibilities are endless. The rewards are too!

Best, Holli Margell

Is Produce Making You Sick?

Parasites found in foods and diarrhea!

Do you wash your fruits and vegetables before you eat them?Ever run across food poisoning, water contaminate and endure the suffering of vomiting, stomach aches and diarrhea and such. Don’t you wish that you never ate or drank it so you won’t have to suffer. We have been treating many people(patient) with food borne illness found in produce and poultry. Besides bacteria from contaminated water or fertilizer, the CDC is now reporting a parasite called Cyclospora. It comes from tropical countries and is found in some fruits and vegetables. Washing doesn’t remove the parasite and causes prolonged diarrhea. This parasite Cyclosporo is also called Travelers diarrhea.

The standard treatment is antibiotics. But that is usually prescribed after prolonged diarrhea. If your diarrhea lasts more than 2 weeks, it is called chronic. This is dangerous because not only will you become dehydrated, but your body will be malnourished.

At Hen Sen Herbs we use Seriogan, a general use herbal medicine that is found in almost all households in Japan and Asia. Seirogan is effective in treating and allaying stomach aches, diarrhea, diarrhea due to digestive disorders, food poisoning, vomiting, water contamination (Montezuma’s revenge= Traveler diarrhea), and soft stool. The moment you start noticing the discomfort of nausea and gastrointestinal issues, Seirogan has the reputation to be very effective. Seirogan is said to be one of the popular items purchased by travelers from Taiwan, China and other Asian countries. In pre-World War II Japan, Seriogan was believed to combat tuberculosis or aid someone with a weak constitution, and employed as a panacea (cure-all) of sorts.

What else can we do to avoid getting sick from fruits and vegetables? You can wash your produce for bacteria, but for parasites, we must pay attention to where our food comes from – reading the label or sign and buying local will help. Buying local means we only buy what is in season in our area, which also means it’s fresher and tastes better!