Ginseng is probably the most widely known Chinese medicinal herb in the world – what is less clear is the level of scientific proof about its anti aging benefits.
As an anti aging supplement ginseng is based on the dried root of one of several species of a family of herbs.
The most common type of ginseng is Asian ginseng, often called Panax, Chinese, or Korean ginseng – but most frequently refered to as Panax – or “all healing” – Ginseng.Panax ginseng is a knobby, light tan root. Occasionally the middle of the root is said to resemble the human body because the string like shoots that stem off from the root look like arms and legs.
The benefits claimed for ginseng are based on its phytochemicals – which simply means chemicals derived from plants – which have some powerful properties.
These phytochemicals in ginseng are claimed to limit stress hormones, improve sharpness and mental function, and boost blood circulation in the brain giving a lift to memory and thinking ability.
Ginseng is also used as an aid to insomnia and in the relief of post menopausal symptoms and migraine. In addition, Korean ginseng contains natural steroids which are remarkably similar to anabolic steroids and help the body to build lean muscle mass
Ginseng is one of the most researched herbal remedies and some studies have shown it to be a natural anti aging supplement.
In 1995, a study found that taking ginseng supplements led to an increase in the lymphocyte production in the body which offsets the effects of aging.
In an earlier study in 1994 mice were given an extract of ginseng and were found to have increased their lifespan as well as prevented weight loss due to aging.
The problems is that despite the wide range of studies undertaken the scientific quality of the research has not always been high. Studies have used different types and strengths of ginseng and conclusions have been unclear as a result.
Ginseng is found in a variety of forms – pills, capsules, teas, powdered root, extract, and tinctures. The suggested dose for panex or korean ginseng is 1,000 to 2,000 mg of fresh root, 600 to 2,000 mg of dried root, or 200 to 600 mg of liquid extract daily.
Many people swear by the benefits of taking a regular ginseng supplement. Some people take it only as a short term energy or memory booser and others feel there are more reliable anti aging supplements available with proven benefits.
Nowadays there are a huge range of anti aging antioxidants which we can choose from. Most of us find there is a limit to what we can take and we want to take the anti aging supplements that have been tested and shown to work.
Recent research is showing us which are the best anti aging supplements to take and in my book – ginseng isn’t one of those.
As far as deciding whether ginseng is a good anti aging supplement that works for you – the best approach may be to try it and see!