Adlai, Adlay, Adlay Millet, Adlay Seed, Chinese Pearl Barley, Coix, Coïx, Coix Lachrymal, Coix Lachryma-jobi, Coix Lacryma, Coix lacryma-jobi, Coix ma-yuen, Coix Seed, Coixseed, Coix stenocarpa, Dehulled Adlay, Herbe aux Perles, Job's-tears, Lágrimas de Job, Larme-de-Job, Larme-du-Christ, Larmes de Job, Larmille, Hiob's Tränen-Gras, Hiobsträne, Jobinkyynelheinä, Jobs Tårar, Juzudama, Lagrimas de Job, Lágrimas de Job, Lagrimas de San Pedro, Soft-shelled Job's Tears, Yi Hato-mugi, Yi Yi, Yi Yi Ren.


Overview Information

Job's tears is a broad-leaved grass that grows in China, India, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, and Malaysia. It is considered a health food in Asian countries. The seeds of Job's tears are tear-shaped and come in several colors. The seeds are sometimes used as ornamental beads. The root and seed of the plant are sometimes used as a medicine.

People have used Job's tears orally for a variety of conditions. While there is some research that supports the use of Job's tears for high cholesterol, there is no good scientific evidence to support its other uses.

How does it work?

Job's tears contains chemicals that might interfere with cancer cell growth. Other chemicals might also have antioxidant effects and might also decrease growth of bacteria and parasites. But most research on Job's tears is in animals and test tubes. There isn't enough information to know if Job's tears works the same way in people.

However, some research has been done in people. It suggests that fiber contained in Job's tears might decrease how much fat and cholesterol the body absorbs.


Uses & Effectiveness?

Insufficient Evidence for

  • High cholesterol. Developing research suggests that consuming Job's tears in place of rice for 4 weeks can significantly lower total and "bad" low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol in people with high cholesterol. This effect may be due to the fiber in Job's tears.
  • Allergies.
  • Cancer.
  • Warts.
  • Toxoplasmosis, a parasitic infection.
  • Arthritis.
  • Obesity.
  • Respiratory tract infections.
  • Other conditions.
More evidence is needed to rate the effectiveness of Job's tears for these uses.

Side Effects

Side Effects & Safety

Job's tears seems to be safe when in food amounts. There isn't enough information to know if taking Job's tears in pills as a supplement is safe.

Special Precautions & Warnings:

Pregnancy and breast-feeding: It might be UNSAFE to take Job's tears if you are pregnant. Research in animals suggests that it can poison a developing embryo. It can also cause the uterus to contract, and this might harm the pregnancy.

No one knows whether if it is safe to use Job's tears during breast-feeding. Stay on the safe side and avoid use.

Surgery: Job's tears might lower blood sugar levels. There is some concern that it might interfere with blood sugar control during and after surgery. Stop using Job's tears at least 2 weeks before a scheduled surgery.



Moderate Interaction

Be cautious with this combination

  • Medications for diabetes (Antidiabetes drugs) interacts with JOB'S TEARS

    Job's tears might decrease blood sugar levels. Diabetes medications are also used to lower blood sugar. Taking Job's tears along with diabetes medications might cause your blood sugar to go too low. Monitor your blood sugar closely. The dose of your diabetes medication might need to be changed.Some medications used for diabetes include glimepiride (Amaryl), glyburide (DiaBeta, Glynase PresTab, Micronase), insulin, pioglitazone (Actos), rosiglitazone (Avandia), chlorpropamide (Diabinese), glipizide (Glucotrol), tolbutamide (Orinase), and others.



The appropriate dose of Job's tears depends on several factors such as the user's age, health, and several other conditions. At this time there is not enough scientific information to determine an appropriate range of doses for Job's tears. Keep in mind that natural products are not always necessarily safe and dosages can be important. Be sure to follow relevant directions on product labels and consult your pharmacist or physician or other healthcare professional before using.

View References


  • Bao Y, Yuan Y, Xia L, et al. Neutral lipid isolated from endosperm of Job's tears inhibits the growth of pancreatic cancer cells via apoptosis, G2/M arrest, and regulation of gene expression. J Gastroenterol Hepatol 2005;20:1046-53. View abstract.
  • Chang HC, Huang YC, Hung WC. Antiproliferative and chemopreventive effects of adlay seed on lung cancer in vitro and in vivo. J Agric Food Chem 2003;51:3656-60. View abstract.
  • Chiang W, Cheng C, Chiang M, Chung KT. Effects of dehulled adlay on the culture count of some microbiota and their metabolism in the gastrointestinal tract of rats. J Agric Food Chem 2000;48:829-32. View abstract.
  • Choi MJ, Oh SH, Cho SB. Coix lacryma-jobi associated symmetrical drug-related intertriginous and flexural exanthema. Int J Dermatol 2014;53(4):e301-3. View abstract.
  • Hsu HY, Lin BF, Lin JY, et al. Suppression of allergic reactions by dehulled adlay in association with the balance of TH1/TH2 cell responses. J Agric Food Chem 2003;51:3763-9. View abstract.
  • Huang BW, Chiang MT, Yao HT, Chiang W. The effect of adlay oil on plasma lipids, insulin and leptin in rat. Phytomedicine 2005;12:433-9. View abstract.
  • Hung WC, Chang HC. Methanolic extract of adlay seed suppresses COX-2 expression of human lung cancer cells via inhibition of gene transcription. J Agric Food Chem 2003;51:7333-7. View abstract.
  • Kim SO, Yun SJ, Jung B, et al. Hypolipidemic effects of crude extract of adlay seed (Coix lachrymajobi var. mayuen) in obesity rat fed high fat diet: relations of TNF-alpha and leptin mRNA expressions and serum lipid levels. Life Sci 2004;75:1391-404. View abstract.
  • Moreau RA, Singh V, Hicks KB. Comparison of oil and phytosterol levels in germplasm accessions of corn, teosinte, and Job's tears. J Agric Food Chem 2001;49:3793-5. View abstract.
  • Otsuka H, Hirai Y, Nagao T, Yamasaki K. Anti-inflammatory activity of benzoxazinoids from roots of Coix lachryma-jobi var. ma-yuen. J Nat Prod 1988;51:74-9. View abstract.
  • Shih CK, Chiang W, Kuo ML. Effects of adlay on azoxymethane-induced colon carcinogenesis in rats. Food Chem Toxicol 2004;42:1339-47. View abstract.
  • Soh CT, Kim SH, Kim KY, et al. Biostatic activity of Coix lacryma seed extract on Toxoplasma gondii in macrophages. Korean J Parasitol 1996;34:197-206. View abstract.
  • Tzeng HP, Chiang W, Ueng TH, Liu SH. The abortifacient effects from the seeds of Coix lachryma-jobi L. var. ma-yuen Stapf. J Toxicol Environ Health A 2005;68:1557-65. View abstract.
  • Yu YM, Chang WC, Liu CS, Tsai CM. Effect of young barley leaf extract and adlay on plasma lipids and LDL oxidation in hyperlipidemic smokers. Biol Pharm Bull 2004;27:802-5. View abstract.

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CONDITIONS OF USE AND IMPORTANT INFORMATION: This information is meant to supplement, not replace advice from your doctor or healthcare provider and is not meant to cover all possible uses, precautions, interactions or adverse effects. This information may not fit your specific health circumstances. Never delay or disregard seeking professional medical advice from your doctor or other qualified health care provider because of something you have read on WebMD. You should always speak with your doctor or health care professional before you start, stop, or change any prescribed part of your health care plan or treatment and to determine what course of therapy is right for you.

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