Shennong is said to have helped people transition from a diet of meat and wild fruits to one based on grain and vegetables. He has been credited with advancing Chinese farming techniques by teaching farmers how to plant grains of millet, rye, and wheat and with inventing the wooden plough.
His extensive knowledge of herbs was acquired through tasting them in order to distinguish those with medicinal value from the poisonous ones.
Honor Shennong's Devotion and Achievement
As a result of his efforts, numerous herbs became used for health care and the knowledge was handed down by word of mouth for centuries. Later in the Han Dynasty (206 B.C. – 220 A.D.), a book called the Shennong Bencaojing (Shennong Emperor’s Classic Journal of Herbal Medicine) was written.
While this book’s authorship is attributed to Shennong, it was actually written by several anonymous authors in his honor. This book listed 365 Chinese medicines of which 252 of them are herbs. Even today, this book is still used by Chinese medicine physicians.