GOD'S HERB: GINSENG IS GOOD FOR HEALTH
God in His wisdom has spread out the different species of food among the nations of the world. Since the climate is different for various parts of the world, there are different seasons and temperatures, spring, summer, autumn, and winter. God had devised different plants to flourish in different areas and climates. God's plan was to make the countries depend on each other for specific needs. Nations have learnt to trade in their wealth of different kinds of food, minerals, commodities such as gold, oil, tin, etc. No man is an island and man has to depend on various nations to trade and barter. Every nation is dependant on another nation for the things they need. They have to learn to deal with other nations and accept them as God did.
Ginseng is grown in Asia and used in traditional Chinese medicine for thousands of years. Recently, the west has caught on and researches on cancer therapy are ongoing.
Ginseng is a slow-growing perennial plant with fleshy roots, belonging to the Panax genus in the family Araliaceae. It grows in the Northern Hemisphere in eastern Asia (mostly northern China, Korea, and eastern Siberia), especially in cooler climates. Panax vietnamensis, discovered in Vietnam, is the southernmost ginseng found. The Panax ginsengs, which are the adaptogenic herbs, principally Panax ginseng and P. quinquefolius. Ginseng is characterized by the presence of ginsenosides.
Siberian ginseng is not a true ginseng, but a different plant that was renamed as "Siberian ginseng" as a marketing device.
The two most common types of ginseng are Panax ginseng, also called Asian, Chinese or Korean ginseng, and Panax quinquefolius, also called American, Canadian, or North American ginseng.
According to traditional Chinese medicine, each type of ginseng is thought to have unique healing properties. Asian ginseng is good for improving circulation. American ginseng has more "cooling" properties, which make it valuable for fever and respiratory tract disorders.
The Chinese form of Panax ginseng has been most widely studied. American ginseng (P. quinquefolius) is popular in both Asia and Western countries. The medicinal properties of Siberian ginseng are also becoming increasingly well known.
China, Korea, E. Siberia
Some believe that ginseng was discovered more than 5000 years ago in Northern China. The name ginseng comes from a Chinese word meaning human-shaped root because of its unique shape. The root looks much like a human body dancing, with the plant as the head of the body. The ancient Chinese believed that the plant removed evil, prolonged life, improved human understanding, helped the heart, and bolstered the soul. Because it was so popular, ginseng became the first root purposely cultivated and grown.Native Americans also used ginseng for medicinal properties. When Europeans discovered the quantity of ginseng in the Americas, a trade was set up with China and they exported American ginseng overseas to Asia. So much ginseng was exported, in fact, that the plant almost became extinct in the Americas.
Today, wild ginseng is still near extinction because of over harvesting in the United States. However, there are now laws in place to regulate the harvest of the plant.
Modern Day Uses
People all over the world use ginseng as an herbal remedy for a variety of problems. It is said that ginseng cures tiredness, stress, the flu, sexual problems, heart problems, obesity, memory loss, and more.
So what is ginseng good for? The jury is still out. Some studies done on ginseng, such as the one done by B.K. Vogler, M.H. Pittler and E. Ernst published in the European Journal of Clinical Pharmacology state that there is no evidence that ginseng does anything at all.
Other studies have found that ginseng can be a very beneficial herb for a person's health.
One study by the National Autonomous University of Mexico stated that the root may be "a promising dietary supplement." The group of test subjects that took ginseng with a multivitamin showed significant improvements in their quality of life compared to the group who just took a multivitamin. The group who took the ginseng also did not gain any weight and those who did not take ginseng did gain weight.
A study done by Department of Preventive Medicine showed that ginseng may reduce the risk of different types of cancer. The study showed that in lab rats, chemicals in the herb inhibited the creation of cancer cells.
Ingesting ginseng may also cure sexual dysfunction. A study done by the Department of Physiology at Southern Illinois University and the School of Medicine in Carbondale, Illinois found that both Asian and American ginseng could be used to enhance libido, increase hormone secretion and improve penis erection.
A study published in the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society found that the use of American ginseng may prevent acute respiratory illness in older adults that are institutionalized. Subjects that took the herb were 89 percent less likely to get the flu than those who didn't take it.
These studies add creditability to the claims about the benefits of ginseng made by people for thousands of years.
Initial Author: Alinabradford
STUDY IN SOUTH KOREA
Cancer. A study performed in South Korea followed 4,587 men and women aged thirty-nine years and older from 1987 to 1991. Individuals who consumed Ginseng regularly were compared with similar individuals who did not. It was reported that in that time, those who used Ginseng had a 60 percent lower incidence of death from Cancer, especially lung and stomach Cancer. Experiments in China found that when Ginseng therapy was combined with traditional radiation and chemotherapy for small cell lung Cancer, longevity was extended by three to seventeen years."
BENEFITS OF GINSENG
The many benefits of Ginseng are shown in the following:
- Many studies have shown that ginseng can improve memory, increase concentration and physical endurance. Combined with ginkgo, Ginseng’s ability to improve mental function seems to increase.
- Ginseng is also an immune system booster and natural detoxifier for it helps keep the liver, adrenal glands, and thyroid healthy.
- Ginseng is an adaptogen for it adapts itself as necessary to treat imbalances in the body. It has been shown to help balance blood pressure, blood sugar, triglyceride and cholesterol levels, and hormones in both men and women.
- Studies in South Korea and China both showed that people who regularly consumed ginseng were less likely to get lung cancer, and that ginseng also seemed to enhance the effects of both radiation and chemotherapy. Studies suggest that two compounds in ginseng, ginsan and polyacetylinic alcohol help destroy lung cancer cells and slow tumor growth.
- Ginseng is thought to have a mild stimulant effect, which may sharpen mental awareness and relieve symptoms of chronic fatigue. Tests have also shown that ginseng can help prevent a heart attack by lowering the heart rate and blood pressure.
- Research has supported the traditional belief that ginseng acts as an aphrodisiac by stimulating the hypothalamus to produce sex hormones that stimulate cell growth and healing in the sex organs.
- It is particularly helpful to men experiencing fertility or erectile dysfunction; it increases testosterone levels and blood flow to the penis. Women experiencing hot flashes may also benefit from ginseng supplementation, because ginseng has been found to stimulate the ovaries to produce more estrogen.
- Ginseng’s ability to improve brain function and act as a stimulant may be helpful to people suffering from depression, stress, and some drug dependencies.
The usual dosage is 250 to 500 milligrams in capsules or 1 teaspoon of liquid extract daily. You can also buy fresh or dried ginseng root at some health food stores to make a potent, home-brewed tea—use ½ teaspoon of dried root in a cup of hot water once or twice a day.
Some people may be sensitive to this herb, and may get diarrhea or upset stomach. The phytochemicals in ginseng may cause breast tenderness or irregular periods in some women. Other side effects include allergic reaction, heart palpitations, insomnia, rash and mood swings. Make sure to follow the recommended dosage instructions.
It is recommended that ginseng should not be used continuously for periods of time longer than three months. The recommended period of use is one month followed by a rest period of two months.
Avoid this herb altogether if you are suffering heart disease, and should consult your cardiologist before taking ginseng supplements.
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