Extracts from the bark or seed cones of the Magnolia tree have been widely used in traditional medicine in China, Korea, and Japan.
Houpu has traditionally been used in Eastern medicine as analgesic and to treat anxiety and mood disorders. However, it has been shown to treat a number of other conditions. In China, magnolia bark is called Houpu and is most commonly taken from the Magnolia obovata and the Magnolia officinalis species. Some Chinese traditional formulas containing Houpu include Banxia Houpu Tang (半夏厚朴丸), Xiao Zhengai Tang, Ping Wei San(平胃散) and Shenmi Tang. Japanese Kampo formulas include, Hange-koboku-to (半夏厚朴湯) and Sai-boku-to (柴朴湯).
Currently there are a large number of supplements containing honokiol on the market, and its use has been widely well received among practitioners of new age, homeopathic, and holistic medicine.