By Jennifer Knapp
Jennifer Knapp: Hi, Dr. Wen. Thank you for taking the time to talk with me about our newest brand of professional herbal formulas, TCMCeuticals. I’m so excited about this new offering from TCMzone and would like to share some of your insights on this novel approach to Traditional Chinese Medicine. Let’s get started.
JK: Can you give our readers a little background on yourself before getting started?
Dan Wen: I have a bit of an interesting background. Over the last several decades, I studied integrative medicine in the areas of liver disease and G.I. in China, then came to the U.S. and, moving from medical research and integrative medicine, headed TCMzone, LLC to become a leading supplier of herbal products for licensed healthcare practitioners. After almost 20 years as an herbal products supplier in the U.S., our products are in top U.S. healthcare hospitals and educational institutions serving different types of practitioners.
JK: How did this concept of TCMCeuticals come about and why did you think a new line of condition-specific clinical formulas was necessary for TCMzone?
DW: TCM plays a very important role in China, Japan, and other Asian countries, as a mainstream integrative medicine in the healthcare systems. In the U.S. we see acupuncture practiced widely and becoming more and more accepted by the public, but traditional Chinese herbs are still considered to be a more minor portion of integrative medicine in the U.S. Many insurance plans cover acupuncture but none cover Chinese herbal medicine. When we talk with our practitioner customers who do administer herbs in their clinics, we hear such positive feedback regarding efficacy, simplicity of delivery systems, and overall integration of the herbs with their routine clinical protocols. However, I still see a wide gap in mainstream usage of TCM in the U.S. versus Asia and I want to see this narrow. One concept I’d always thought about was working with successful practitioners of Chinese herbal medicine, well-trained in China, with extensive clinical experience practicing in the U.S. Several years ago, I was in New York, meeting with one of my medical school mates from China, Dr. Guoping Zheng. She was studying gynecology and women’s health and is now running a successful practice focusing on women’s health and fertility. We began talking about this idea of using her vast clinical experience treating fertility patients in the U.S., combined with her extensive knowledge of Chinese herbs, to bring herbal usage to a broader audience, allowing other practitioners to gain from her ideas and using her custom formulations built on years of experience to help more patients in the U.S. She was interested, and over the years we kept this dialogue open until, recently, she was ready to prepare 3 formulas for TCMzone, which we brought to our quality manufacturer for production and quality control tests, and eventually to market as our first TCMCeuticals formulas: Fertile Wisdom*.
To summarize the concept behind TCMCeuticals: it represents a unique product line composed of different herbal products, formulated by master-level practitioners with decades of experience in clinical specialty areas. They understand the common conditions of U.S patients in their specialty and come from high level training in China. We’re all familiar with the terms nutraceuticals, pharmaceuticals, and even foodceuticals; now we are introducing the first ever TCMCeuticals. TCM+Ceuticals equals custom, condition-specific, traditional Chinese herbal products representing safety, efficacy and highest possible quality. These 3 important concepts are represented in our TCMCeuticals logo: the three yellow, natural earth pieces that support this product line.
JK: You mentioned Dr. Zheng’s Fertile Wisdom line. Can you tell us about each of these new lines and what makes them different from classical TCM formulas?
DW: TCMCeuticals is a brand of herbal formulas that represent condition-specific formulas; this is important. Chinese herbal medicine is extremely broad, requiring intensive understanding of many areas. We designed this product line based on the experience of formulators and their in-depth understanding of Chinese herbal medicine. This opens the door for many practitioners in the U.S. to use these Chinese herbal formulas based on common conditions seen in their clinic.
The first two lines we launched are for G.I. and fertility, two focuses widely seen in the U.S.—not only by acupuncturists but also many other integrative practitioners (NDs, DCs, MDs) interested in progressing their integrative medical approach. TCMCeuticals provides a unique tool for the healthcare profession.
The last 18 years, our approach has been to provide high quality classical formulas and compounding single herbs in a variety of dosage forms, fundamental products for day to day use by Chinese medicine practitioners and acupuncturists. These practitioners can easily use our products with the support of our team and their knowledge of TCM. Our new line of TCMCeuticals represents a new concept of traditional herbal medicine, a line completely formulated by practitioners and based on classical formulas, but including practitioners’ clinical experiences. These are not your classical TCM formulas; these are expert formulas using TCM as a guide but uniquely formulated for specific conditions seen in modern clinical settings. TCMCeuticals granules and capsules can be used alone or easily integrated with our existing TCMzone brands of classical formulas and compounding single herbs.
JK: What is your vision for TCMCeuticals down the line? What do you hope to see with this new brand?
DW: I am excited to see the launch of the brand new TCMCeuticals. This is a milestone for our business. I’m also very excited to see the initial results of this launch. We have received such positive feedback in only our first month and I feel strongly that the concept of TCMCeuticals, Safety, Efficacy, and Quality is a strong foundation to support and grow this line. I’m hoping this condition-specific line will create broader usage among integrative medicine practitioners, representing an important movement for our company in supporting a vast number of practitioners, creating consistent clinical results, and ultimately helping the general public achieve better health. In addition to these first six formulas, we have plans for another five, launching later this year under the TCMCeuticals brand. We’re looking forward to this line covering many conditions. My goal is for TCMzone to carry a broad selection of herbal products from classical Chinese formulas, Japanese Kampo formulas, compounding single herbs and clinically-driven formulas so practitioners and consumers have access to many different kinds of quality herbal products to reach optimal health.