Ginseng and Gingko Biloba
Disclaimer: This content has been produced purely for informational and educational purposes only and is never intended to be used as a substitute for professional medical guidelines including diagnosis, advice, and treatment.
Ginseng and ginkgo Biloba are the most popular herbal nutritional items around the globe. The widespread usage of these two items as cognitive enhancers has significantly increased over the past fifteen years, despite the fact that historically they have been employed in the treatment and prevention of a number of illnesses, particularly in traditional Chinese medicine.
Although each of these herbs is beneficial for mental health, their actions are different. Ginkgo biloba works by improving the blood supply to the brain. However, ginseng has a reputation for promoting the synthesis of Adrenocorticotropic Hormone (ACTH).
This article details ginseng and ginkgo biloba, their potential benefits, dissimilarities, and risks associated with overconsumption.
What is Ginseng?
Indian ginseng, biologically known as Withania somnifera is a herb with potent antioxidant properties. It has been used in the traditional Chinese system of medicine for thousands of years. It is also known as Ashwagandha, a Sanskrit word that describes the smell of roots like a horse. Ginseng improves energy and provides strength to the body.
Powerful Antioxidant and Reduce Inflammation
Ginseng possesses potent antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. Studies revealed that ginsenoside help relieve inflammation and reduce oxidative stress that causes chronic diseases.
Can Improve Brain Health
Ginseng has the potential to improve brain health by boosting memory, cognition, behavior, and mood. Research showed that bioactive compounds protect the brain from damage caused by free radicals and prevent neurodegenerative diseases.
A study revealed that consumption of 200mg of ginseng extract enhanced memory after three hours in contrast to a placebo.
Help People with Erectile Dysfunction
Studies concluded that ginseng has the ability to be used as an alternative treatment for erectile dysfunction. It increases blood supply to the penis and encourages muscle relaxation. Antioxidants present in this herb help to reduce oxidative stress and improve sexual performance.
Can prevent Certain Cancer
The antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties of ginseng help reduce inflammation and oxidative stress which may prevent cancer. Compounds in ashwagandha have potential to restrict the production and growth of cancer cells. A study revealed that consumption of ginseng is associated with a 16% reduced risk of developing cancer.
Relieve Fatigue and Boost Energy Levels
Ginseng contains compounds like withanolides, polysaccharides, lactones, and oligopeptides that can reduce oxidative stress and increase energy production in cells. Studies revealed that ginseng can improve energy and fight chronic fatigue more effectively than a placebo.
May Boost Immune Health
Ginseng possesses antimicrobial properties which help fight infection and boost the function of the immune system. Moreover, the antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties of ginseng reduce oxidative stress, prevent cellular damage, relieve inflammation, and boost immunity.
Possible Risks or Side Effects
Ginseng is well tolerated by people and does not cause any serious side effects. However, it may interact with hypoglycemic drugs and can reduce blood sugar to dangerous levels. Moreover, it may reduce the efficacy of anticoagulants.
What is Gingko Biloba?
Gingko biloba, also known as maidenhair, is a powerful antioxidant and offers a variety of benefits to the body. It has been used as an effective treatment for various health problems like blood disorders, cardiovascular health, memory problems, and eye diseases.
It is frequently referred to as a living fossil because it's the lone survivor of a long-extinct plant order. One of the oldest tree species which can survive for more than 1000 years and attain a height of 130 feet. According to claims, China has some trees which are over 2500 years old.
Have Antioxidant Properties
Gingko biloba possesses bioactive compounds like terpenoids and flavonoids which have potent antioxidant properties. These antioxidants neutralize the harmful effects of free radicals and protect the body from chronic diseases.
Can Improve Brain Health
Studies revealed that ginkgo biloba can improve brain health as it can improve memory and cognitive health, and reduce dementia. It works by improving blood circulation to the brain and protecting the brain from neuronal damage.
May Relieve the Symptoms of Anxiety
Ginkgo has the potential to alleviate the symptoms of anxiety. According to research, ginkgo provided more effective anxiety alleviation than a placebo for persons with generalized anxiety disorder.
Can Improve Eye Health
In research, patients with glaucoma who took 120 milligrams of ginkgo daily for eight weeks saw improvements in their eyesight. Gingko may aid those with macular degeneration in maintaining their vision for a longer period.
May Boost Heart Health
Ginkgo’s potential to boost blood circulation to various parts of the body is credited for most of its health benefits. A study in individuals with cardiovascular diseases showed that supplementing ginkgo resulted in a rapid increase in blood flow to different parts of the body. Additionally, a 12% increase in circulating nitric oxide was also observed which is associated with the dilatation of blood vessels.
May Improve Headaches and Migraines
Ginkgo is a particularly well-known headache and migraine remedy in traditional Chinese medicine. There is not much information on ginkgo's effectiveness in treating headaches. It might, however, depend on the underlying reason for the headache. Ginkgo, for instance, is well known for its anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties. It may be helpful if a headache or migraine is brought on by severe stress.
Additionally, ginkgo's capacity to widen blood vessels may help symptoms if a headache is brought on by decreased blood flow or constricted blood vessels.
Possible Risks or Side Effects
Consumption of high dosages of ginkgo biloba is associated with some side effects in some people. Adverse effects may include headache, dizziness, nausea, vomiting, stomach pain, and allergic reaction. It may also interact with medications like blood thinners, antidepressants, and NSAIDs.
Differences Between Ginseng and Gingko Biloba
Ginseng and ginkgo biloba are important medicinal herbs that have traditionally been used for the treatment of various diseases. These two herbs are similar in various ways, though have many differences.
Extracts of these herbs come from different parts; ginseng extract is obtained from roots while ginkgo biloba extract is derived from leaves and seeds.
Another dissimilarity is the composition of plants with respect to their bioactive compounds. Ginseng possesses withanolides as an effective chemical compound while flavonoids and terpenoids are the active compounds present in ginkgo biloba.
Though both herbs have been used to improve cognitive abilities, their mechanism of action varies widely. Ginseng works by stimulating the synthesis of adrenocorticotropic hormone while ginkgo biloba boosts the blood supply to the brain.
When come to the side effects, ginseng is well tolerated and does not cause any serious side effects while ginkgo comes with some side effects. Ginseng is a herb with adaptogenic properties and does not pose adverse effects even at higher doses. while ginkgo causes some side effects like headache, nausea, and vomiting.
Ginseng and ginkgo biloba are herbs with powerful antioxidant abilities which protect the body from damage caused by free radicals. They improve memory, and cognition, and boost brain health. Both these herbs vary in their bioactive compounds and the way they affect the body.