Lv Dou (Mung Bean, Green Gram or Moong)

What Is Lv Dou

Lv Dou commonly known as Mung Bean, Green Gram, or Moong is the seed of Vigna radiata, which is an annual herb belonging to the family Leguminosae. It is a common ingredient in East Asia and is often used to make Lv Dou Tang (Mung Bean Soup) and Lv Dou Gao (Mung Bean Cake).

Vigna radiata is one of many species that moved from the genus Phaseolus to Vigna in the 1970s, which is previously known as Phaseolus radiatus.

This plant has strong adaptability and can grow on sandy soil, thin hillside soil, black soil, and clay. It is native to India and Pakistan. It was widely planted in India about 3500 years ago. At present, cultivated Vigna radiata is widely distributed in tropical and subtropical regions around the world. Its main exporters are China and Myanmar.

Vigna radiata

This plant is very popular in East Asia, the Indian subcontinent, Southeast Asia, and the Middle East. Some desserts, wines, and beverages contain it. Its seeds are commonly used fillings for Chinese moon cakes.

After autumn, people gather mature seeds of Vigna radiata, remove their impurities, wash them with water, dry them in the sun, use them directly, or grind them into powder, and make them into Chinese herbal medicines.

Lv Dou contains protein, fat, carbohydrates, dietary fiber, thiamin, riboflavin, niacin, pantothenic acid, vitamin B6, folic acid, vitamin C, vitamin E, vitamin K, tannins, alkaloids, coumarins, phytosterols, anthocyanins, flavonoids, saponins, cardiac glycosides, anthraquinones, calcium, iron, magnesium, manganese, phosphorus, potassium, zinc.

According to <Kaibao Bencao>, the medicinal property of Lv Dou is relatively cold, with a sweet taste. It has a certain therapeutic effect on the pathological changes of the heart and stomach meridians.

In traditional Chinese medicine, Lv Dou is often used to clear heat and remove toxins, remove summer-heat and induce diuresis, treat intractable boils, acne, measles, oral ulcers, polydipsia, edema, oliguria, drug, and food poisoning.

There are very few Chinese medicine prescriptions containing Lv Dou. It is often used as a dietary fiber supplement for dietary therapy.


  • Anti-inflammation, anti-oxidation, anti-allergy.
  • Increasing the phagocytic capacity of phagocytes and improving immunity.
  • Lowering serum cholesterol and preventing coronary artery disease.
  • Removing heat toxins, treating sores, and carbuncles caused by heat toxins.
  • Removing summer-heat, treating polydipsia and deep-colored urine caused by summer heat.
  • Alleviating poisoning caused by aconite, croton, arsenic, and organophosphorus pesticide poisoning.
  • Inducing diuresis, treating anuria, dribbling urine, and edema.
  • Inhibiting the growth of leukemia L1210 cells, leukemia K562 cells, and lung cancer cells A549.
  • It is rich in superoxide dismutase, which can scavenge free radicals and delay aging.
  • It contains phytoestrogens, which can promote the growth of the breast, fallopian tubes, uterus, and ovaries.
  • Studies have found that it contains lysozyme, which can inhibit Staphylococcus and Fusarium.


  • It can be used in combination with Da Huang (Radix et Rhizoma Rhei), Bo He (Mentha), and honey to eliminate sores and carbuncles caused by heat toxins.
  • It can be used in combination with Chi Xiao Dou (Adzuki Bean), Hei Dou (Black Soybean), and Gan Cao (Licorice Root) to treat acne and measles.
  • It can be used in combination with Xi Gua Cui Yi (Watermelon Peel), He Ye (Folium Nelumbinis), and Qing Hao (Sweet wormwood) to treat polydipsia and deep-colored urine caused by summer heat.
  • It can be used in combination with Huang Lian (Rhizoma Coptidis), Ge Gen (Kudzu Root), and Gan Cao (Licorice Root) to treat poisoning caused by aconite, croton, and arsenic.
  • It can be used in combination with Chen Pi (Tangerine Peel) and Dong Gua Zi (Winter Melon Seeds) to treat dysuria and edema.

Side Effects

Lv Dou is edible with almost no side effects.

Undercooked Lv Dou has a strong beany flavor, and eating it may cause nausea and vomiting.

Precautions and Warnings

  • The dosage of Lv Dou should be controlled at 15-30g.
  • It can be made into decoctions, powder, or tea.
  • It is not recommended to use iron utensils to boil it.
  • People with deficiency-cold in the spleen and stomach should not take it.
  • People with diarrhea due to intestinal looseness should not take it.