Dan Dou Chi (Semen Sojae Preparatum or Prepared Soybean)

What Is Dan Dou Chi

Dan Dou Chi commonly known as Semen Sojae Preparatum or Prepared Soybean is the fermented mature seed of Glycine max, which is an annual herb belonging to the family Leguminosae. It is a commonly used dietetic Chinese herbal medicine, which first appeared in <Mingyi Bie Lu> around 420-589 AD.

Glycine max is commonly known as Soybean and is an important legume plant in the world. It is native to East Asia and is now widely distributed all over the world.

According to archaeological evidence, Glycine max have been planted for more than 5,000 years. It is rich in plant protein and is an important crop in China and the United States. Its seeds can be made into a variety of soy products, such as soymilk, tofu, and tofu skin. Fermented soybeans are an important raw material for soy sauce, bean paste, natto, and tempeh.

Glycine max

In autumn, people gather mature seeds of Glycine max, remove impurities, infuse them in boiling Sang Ye (Mulberry Leaf) and Qing Hao (Sweet Wormwood) decoction, steam them thoroughly, remove the dregs, seal them and ferment for 15-20 days, dry them in the sun, and make them into Chinese herbal medicines.

Dan Dou Chi contains daidzein, glycitein, genistein, daidzin, glycitin, genistin, douchi fibrinolytic enzyme, γ-aminobutyric acid, D-mannose, lactose, soybean oligosaccharides, vitamin B1, vitamin B2, vitamin K2, carotene, saponins, protein, and fat.

Generally, the soft Dan Dou Chi with a brown-black cross-section is preferred.

According to <Compendium of Materia Medica>, the medicinal nature of Dan Dou Chi is relatively cold, with a pungent and slightly bitter taste. It has a certain therapeutic effect on the pathological changes of the lung and stomach meridians.

In traditional Chinese medicine, it is often used to relieve exterior symptoms and relieve restlessness, disperse stagnant heat, and treat flu, meningitis, pneumonia, cancerous fever, dreaminess, insomnia, toothache, sores, ringworm, malaria, osteoporosis, diabetes, breast cancer, and female menopausal syndrome.

There are about 50 kinds of Chinese medicine prescriptions containing it, such as Jinqing Ganmao granules, Jingju Ganmao Pian, Shufeng Sanre capsules, and Yin Qiao San.


  • Enhancing the activity of superoxide dismutase, inhibiting lipid peroxidation, and scavenging free radicals.
  • Reducing serum total cholesterol, triglycerides, low-density lipoprotein content, and increasing high-density lipoprotein content.
  • Inhibiting glucosidase activity and reducing blood sugar levels in alloxan diabetic rats and streptozotocin-diabetic rats.
  • Relieving exterior symptoms, and treating fever, the body feeling mild cold, headache, thirst, and sore throat caused by wind-heat or warm diseases.
  • Treating a fever with the body feeling cold, anhidrosis, headache, nasal congestion caused by wind-cold.
  • Dispersing stagnant heat in the lung, treating fever, chest tightness, restlessness, and insomnia caused by febrile diseases.
  • The douchi fibrinolytic enzyme can dissolve thrombus fibrin.
  • It contains vitamin K2, which can prevent osteoporosis, improve arterial calcification, and treat Parkinson’s disease.
  • Its isoflavones have an estrogen-like effect, which can improve female menopausal syndrome.
  • Inhibiting the growth of breast cancer MCF-7 cells, liver cancer SMMC-7721 cells, liver cancer QSG-7701 cells, and inducing liver cancer Hep3B cell apoptosis.
  • Its ethyl acetate extract can inhibit Staphylococcus citrus, Staphylococcus aureus, and B. paratyphi.


Side Effects

  • At present, there are no reports in the literature that Dan Dou Chi has toxic effects, and there are no reports of serious adverse reactions when it is taken according to the prescribed dose.
  • A small percentage of patients taking it may cause stomach pain or fatigue.

Precautions and Warnings

  • The dosage of Dan Dou Chi should be controlled at 6-12g.
  • It can be made into decoctions, powders, medicated liquors, or mashed for external use.
  • People who are allergic to soy should not take it.
  • Patients with weakness of the spleen and stomach should not take it.
  • Pregnant and breastfeeding women should take it under the guidance of a doctor.
  • Children, the elderly, and the infirm should take it under the guidance of a doctor.