Mimosa tree bark is bark which has been harvested from the mimosa tree, also known as a Persian silk tree. This bark is used in Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) as well as in herbal medicinal traditions in other countries, and as a flavoring in some commercially produced foods. Mimosa tree bark is available at many Chinese markets and in stores which sell Chinese herbs, and it can also be found at some health food stores. Before using any herbal remedy, it is a good idea to consult your doctor, to make sure that its use is appropriate for you.
The Persian silk tree or Albizia julibrissin is a deciduous tree which is native to Southeast Asia. In addition to being used as a source of medicinally valuable compounds, mimosa trees are also planted as ornamentals, since they have a branching growth habit and attractive feathery foliage and flowers. The flowers are also used in various herbal preparations and tinctures. Mimosa tree bark is often sold dried in shredded form, and it can also be found in capsules and tinctures.
In TCM, mimosa tree bark is sometimes called Collective Happiness Bark, because it is used as a general antidepressant. It affects the heart and liver meridians, and since the heart houses the shen, or spirit, mimosa tree bark can be used to calm the spirit and reduce the symptoms associated with depression and general spiritual unrest. Mimosa tree bark is also used to treat inflammation, particularly external pain and swelling.
The practice of TCM is very complex, and careful evaluation is required before an herb will be prescribed. It is important to see a TCM practitioner before taking Chinese herbs, to ensure that you are taking the right herbs in the right amounts. A TCM practitioner may also recommend supplemental therapy such as massage, acupuncture, or tai chi. You find that mimosa tree bark is more effective when used under the guidance of an herbal practitioner.
Herbal remedies can also interfere with the efficacy of other medications. For this reason, you should disclose the use of Chinese herbs to Western doctors, and you should also alert TCM practitioners to any Western medications which you are taking. Failure to do so may result in an adverse drug interaction, which could have serious consequences if not caught and addressed early.