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Asian Ginseng - Uses and Benefits

Scientific Name: Panax Ginseng
Other Names: Chinese Ginseng, Ginseng, Panax, Guigai, Japanese Ginseng, Korean Ginseng, Ninjin, Oriental Ginseng, Panax schinseng, Red Ginseng, Seng.

Asian Ginseng Plant Description

Asian ginseng plant has leaves that grow in a circle around a straight stem. Yellowish-green umbrella-shaped flowers grow in the center and produce red berries. Wrinkles around the neck of the root tell how old the plant is. Knowing the age of the plant is a very important aspect because asian ginseng is not ready for use until it has grown for upto four to six years.

Uses and Benefits

In western herbal medicine, Panax ginseng's regulating effects on the immune system have been studied for potential effectiveness in preventing colds, flu, and some forms of cancer. Asian Ginseng has been used for thousands of years in many asian countries to boost energy, relieve stress, improve concentration, and enhance physical and cognitive performance. In clinical studies, Panax ginseng has been shown to lower blood levels of both sugar and cholesterol, therefore it may help treat type 2 diabetes and high cholesterol.

Treatment claims for Asian ginseng are numerous and include the use of the herb to support overall health and boost the immune system. It has also claimed to be a general restorative, tonic, or adaptogen, which helps in

  • Improving resistance to fight from stress.
  • Improving the health of people recovering from illness.
  • Enhancing stamina and endurance.
  • Increasing a sense of well-being, and improving both mental and physical performance.
  • Enhancing overall body's balance, health and vitality.
  • Treating erectile dysfunction, hepatitis C, and symptoms related to menopause.
  • Lowering blood glucose and controlling blood pressure.

Dosage

The most researched form of ginseng, standardized herbal extracts, supply approximately 5-7% ginsenosides. 16 Asian Ginseng root extracts are sometimes recommended at 200-500 mg per day. Non-standardized extracts require a higher intake, generally 1-4 grams per day for tablets or 2-3 ml for dried root tincture three times per day. Usually, Asian Ginseng is used for around 2-3 weeks continuously, followed by a 1 or 2 week rest before resuming.

Safety

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration does not strictly regulate herbs and supplements. There is no guarantee of strength, purity or safety of products, and their effects may vary from person to person. Every person using the product must first of all read all the instructions written on the product label and should strictly follow them. If you are suffering from any medical condition or you are taking any other drugs, herbs, or supplements with asian ginseng - you should first ask from a renowned doctor before you start taking asian ginseng. Consult a healthcare provider immediately if you experience side effects.

Adverse Side Effects of Asian Ginseng

When used in recommended amounts as written on the product label, ginseng is generally safe. Side effects appear to be mild and uncommon, and are usually similar to placebo in controlled clinical trials. In rare instances, it may cause over-stimulation and sometimes insomnia and headache. Rare idiosyncratic reactions have been reported, such as Stevens-Johnson syndrome and cerebral arteries.

Some of the other Side Effects of Asian Ginseng are:

  • Consuming caffeine with ginseng increases the risk of over-stimulation and gastrointestinal upset. People with uncontrolled high blood pressure should use ginseng very cautiously.
  • Ginseng may affect blood glucose levels; therefore people with diabetes should consult a health care practitioner before use.
  • Long-term use of ginseng may cause menstrual abnormalities and breast tenderness in some women.
  • Ginseng is not recommended for pregnant or breast-feeding women.
  • Rarely, taking Panax ginseng by mouth has been associated with non-infectious hepatitis.
  • Infants given Panax ginseng may develop a condition, resembling alcohol intoxication that has lead to at least one reported death of a newborn.

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