Botanical Name: Lumbricus, Lumbrius terrestris

Earthworms are beloved by gardeners and farmers for promoting healthy soils and plant growth. They are enjoyed as a culinary delicacy by many cultures and are also an important medicine, especially noted for Clearing Heat and lowering fevers and blood pressure.

Watch a short video, from Ann Christensen, Founder and Creator of White Rabbit Institute of Healing™ – Earthworms And Your Cardiovascular System.

Below is an overview of earthworm, combining the best of Western Science, Oriental Medicine, Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), Shamanism, Folklore, and a wide range of healing modalities. Gain a balanced and thorough understanding of the healing properties of earthworm.

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Western Name: Earthworm

Also Known As: Worm

Organs/Systems: Cardiovascular, Bladder

Key Actions: Antispasmodic, Anti-inflammatory, Antipyretic

Medicinal Uses: Lowers blood pressure, high fevers, painful joints, muscle spasms, anemia post pregnancy, thrombosis.


Pin Yin: Di Long (“Earth Dragon.”)

Also Known As: N/A

Meridians: Bladder, Liver, Lung, Spleen

Key Actions: Drains Heat, Stops Spasms and Convulsions, Calms Wheezing, Clears Heat, Unblocks and Promotes Movement in the Channels, Promotes Urination, Hypertension due to Liver Yang Rising, Clears the Heart, Moves Blood, Dissolves Stasis

Key Medicinal Uses: Very high fevers with convulsions (It can even be used alone for this purpose), or fevers with headaches, dizziness, and red eyes, infantile or adult fevers, wheezing due to Lung Heat, swollen painful joints, hemiplegia due to poor circulation, hot painful urination, even with edema, or inability to urinate due to Heat stuck in the Bladder, lowers blood pressure, treats strokes, infantile convulsions, smallpox, and muscle aches due to high fever.

Basic Habitat / Botany:

The earthworm Lumbricus is in the megascolecidae family.

Earthworms live anywhere there is moist soil and dead plant material. They are abundant in rainy forests, but can also be found in many other locations as long as the soil is moist and full of microbiomes and nutrients.

Parts Most Frequently Used: Whole-Dried Worm

Flavors/Temps: Salty, Cold

Caution: Considered safe.

Key Constituents: Lumbrofebrine, Lumbritin, Xanthine, Adenine, Guanine, Choline, Guanidine, Fibrinolysin, Profibrinolysin Activator, Collagenase, Leukocytes, protein, iron, calcium, copper, manganese, zinc

History/Folklore: Earthworms have been used in TCM (Traditional Chinese Medicine), Ayurvedic Medicine, Traditional Arabic, and Islamic Medicine for many thousands of years to treat acute feverish conditions.

In China, the best earthworms are said to come from Guangdong.

Modern science confirms that the three thrombolytic enzymes contained in earthworms: fibrinolysin (plasmin), profibrinolysin activator, and collagenase are effective in dissolving thrombus and restoring blood circulation to the brain helping to ease seizures, headaches, and other related conditions involving heat in the blood.

Chinese research reveals the three enzymes can promote blood flow, help regulate blood sugar levels, and reduce blood fat.

These three enzymes have been isolated and are used in a drug called Plasmin. It reduces the risk of ischemic cardiovascular problems such as strokes, embolisms, and arteriosclerosis.

Earthworms’ immune systems are rich in leukocytes and humoral products that further contribute to their benefits as a healing substance.

They are high in 60-70% protein and iron. Their protein and various amino acids are better than fish meal, cow milk, or soybean meal. Earthworms contain several minerals, including copper, zinc, manganese, and calcium and they also contain important vitamins, including niacin.

A technique from Burma for using earthworms is to heat them in a closed pot until they are reduced to ashes. The ashes are then used alone or mixed with tamarind seeds. They can also be boiled in water with salt and onions. The resulting liquid is mixed with a patient’s food.

Native American Indians used earthworm poultices to draw out thorns and ease the pain of rheumatism.

In Australia and New Zealand, the Maori consider earthworms a ceremonial food fed to their chiefs or as the last food to the dying.

Amazonian tribes consider earthworms a delicacy, and they are prescribed for women in the first month following pregnancy to help prevent anemia.

Earthworms have been used as food in many cultures and are even considered a delicacy reserved for special guests and the elderly.

In soils, earthworms convert organic matter into rich humus, improving soil fertility and allowing plants to thrive. Their castings add important nitrogen and phosphorus to soils.

Worms can live from 4 to 8 years, depending on the climate and predators such as birds, toads, and rats. Their body consists of 90% water.  The most common cause of worm death is their skin drying out.

Earthworms are symbols of spring and rain as they come above ground in the rain, especially in the spring.

They signify the earth’s energy as they live in the ground and rejuvenate the soil with their castings. Their movement loosens the soil, allowing roots the room to access oxygen and the nutrients they need to thrive.

Did you know?

Wash in Wine

The effects of earthworm are enhanced by washing them in wine first.


Determining Good Quality

Good-quality earthworm is thick, long, and intact.

Fun fact!

Treat Smallpox

In Burma, earthworms have been successfully used to treat smallpox.

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