Chicken gizzard lining, or better known as Ji Nei Jin medicinally, is one of frequently used traditional Chinese medicines for the treatment of indigestion, nocturnal emission, night sweats, gallstones, kidney stones, bladder stones, etc. Thanks to its impressive medicinal properties, it was highly evaluated by the ancients and named with Jin, which means it is as precious as gold. In fact, it totally lives up to that fame. As you know, chicken gizzards are one of good healthy foods owing to its crisp texture and high nutritional value. You can fry, barbecue or grill, brine, curry, cook, make soup, stew it to create the chicken gizzard dishes you desire. In comparison, no one would care for its inner lining, which is usually considered a dud and thus ends up being thrown away before the cooking. However, in China all the elderly are aware that this is a good herb that comes with a lot of health benefits.
What is chicken gizzard lining?
It refers to the inner lining of the gizzard of Gallus Gallus Domesticus Brisson, an animal in the family of Phasianidae. As a result, it is also commonly known as Chicken Gizzard’s Stomach Lining, Endothelium Corneum Gigeriae Galli, Chicken’s Gizzard-Skin, Chicken Inner Gold, the inner lining of the chicken gizzard, Chickens Gizzard membrane, Membrane of Chicken Gizzard, and so on. The harvesting process is rather easy, but please note that don’t wash it with water first. Instead it needs to peel it off right after the chicken is killed and the gizzard is taken out. And it is usually used raw, fried or processed with vinegar.
Medicinally it is irregularly flaky, slightly curled, and in various sizes. The intact one is about 3.5cm in length, 3cm in width, and 0.5cm in thickness. Surface is yellow, yellow-green or brown, thin and translucent, and with many obvious prism-like ripples. It is brittle, fragile, shiny, and with horn-like cross-section. And it has slight fishy smell and slightly bitter taste.
Main chemical constituents are ventriculin, keratin, pepsin, diastase, and vitamins. Gizzard lining of chicks in 4 to 8 weeks also contains bilatriene, biliverdin’s derivatives, 18 kinds of amino acids (lysaine, histidine, arginine, glutamic acid, aspartic acid, leucine, threonine, serine, glycine, methionine, isoleucine, tyrosine, phenylalanine, proline, and tryptophane), and trace elements like aluminum, calcium, chromium, cobalt, copper, iron, magnesium, manganese, molybdenum, lead, zinc, and others.
Lining of chicken gizzard benefits
As everyone knows, chicken has two stomachs – one is forestomach and the other is gizzard. Chicken has no teeth, which is the exact reason why it has to swallow some small stones and sands and store them into the gizzard. The benefit of doing so is that the food can be finely ground through the friction of gizzard lining and gravels. Since the lining is able to help digest hard food, for the same reason it also works on food stagnation, infantile malnutrition and so on. What’s more, this herb can deal with all the gall bladder problems, in particular the calculus. Its strong ability of inducing decomposition of calculi can be inferred from its grinding stones inside the chicken body. In fact it is one of essential ingredients in many herbal recipes for the treatment of gallstones, cholecystitis, kidney stones, bladder stones, and other gallbladder problems. You may think that this kind of inference is quite weird. But tell you the truth, that is the a typical simply methodology held by ancient TCM practitioners. But amazingly this happens to have the similar view with its pharmacology made from the western world.
Modern pharmacological actions of chicken’s gizzard skin
1. Taking orally its powder can increase gastric secretion and acidity, improve digestion, and significantly enhance the gastric motility;
2. In vitro experiments showed that it could enhance pepsin, pancreatic lipase activity;
3. Animal experiments showed that it could strengthen the bladder sphincter contraction, reduce urine output, and increase awareness;
4. Its acid extract can accelerate the excretion of radioactive strontium;
5. In vitro tests proved that it could inhibit tumor cells.
Selected lining of chicken gizzard recipe in herbal remedies
The Chinese Materia Medica informs that it is sweet in flavor and neutral in properties and it goes to 4 meridians including spleen, stomach, kidney, and bladder. Important functions are invigorating spleen to promote digestion, arresting seminal emission, and eliminating mass and transforming stones. Main lining of chicken gizzard uses and indications include indigestion, food stagnation, vomiting and nausea, diarrhea and dysentery, infantile malnutrition, nocturnal emission, enuresis, frequent urination, urinary stones and gallstones, abdominal mass and amenorrhea, pharyngitis and acute tonsillitis, ulcerative gingivitis, and aphtha. Recommended dosage is from 3 to 10 grams in decoction and 1.5 to 3 grams in powder or teapills.
1. Yi Pi Bing. From Yi Xue Zhong Zhong Can Xi Lu (Records of Traditional Chinese Medicine in Combination with Western Medicine), this formula is made to treat spleen-stomach damp-cold induced reduced diet, chronic diarrhea, and undigested food in stools. Other herbal ingredients are Bai Zhu (White Atractylodes), Gan Jiang (Dried Ginger Root), and Da Zao (Jujube Fruit).
2. Ji Pi Chi San. From Tai Ping Sheng Hui Fang (Taiping Holy Prescriptions for Universal Relief), this prescription uses it along with Tu Si Zi (Cuscuta), Sang Piao Xiao (Mantis Cradle), etc. to cure enuresis.
3. Er Jin San. From Yi Bu Quan Lu – Mian Men (A Comprehensive Record of Books on Medicine – Face Section), this recipe combines it with Yu Jin (Tumeric Tuber) to heal mumps (epidemic parotitis).
4. Ji Chi Tang. From Yi Xue Zhong Zhong Can Xi Lu, it is basically used for the treatment of qi depression induced bloating. Other herbs are Bai Shao (White Peony Root), Sheng Jiang (Fresh Ginger Rhizome), White Atractylodes, Chai Hu (Bupleurum), and Chen Pi (Citrus Peel).
5. Ji Chi Mao Gen Tang. From Records of Traditional Chinese Medicine in Combination with Western Medicine, it treats bloating by qi or water stagnation. The rest two herbs are White Atractylodes and Japanese Blood Grass (Bai Mao Gen).
Lining of chicken gizzard side effects and contraindications
Chicken gizzard lining is the stomach endothelium, which is kind of protein and edible. According to the clinical data, as of this writing there are no known adverse reactions and drug interactions associated with this herb. However, its doses and uses still require your special attention when you take it. In addition, please strictly comply with the guidance of a professional doctor when necessary. TCM wise, use it with care in the case of spleen deficiency and with no mass.