ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Does Ginseng Really Boost Energy?

Updated on December 1, 2011

What Is Ginseng?

 Ginseng is a plant that is found in Asia, particularly China, and has played an important role in Traditional Chinese Medicine for centuries. It has a variety of uses, including being used as an aphrodisiac and as a cure for sexual dysfunction in men, as well as being a supplement often found in energy drinks. There is some research on the perceived benefits of ginseng, and these findings are discussed in this hub.

What Does the Research Say?

Ginseng is believed to have a positive effect on the energy levels of people who consume it, as it contains an antioxidant, maltol, which has a structure similar to Vitamin E (Starbuck, 1999). This could be a reason why the herb has a "protective effect on brain and nervous tissue." (Starbuck).

According to Bowden, (2008), the Mayo Clinic has conducted a recent study that found that consuming the herb every day can allow a person to have more energy throughout the day. It can actually "improve performance and reduce subjective feelings of mental fatigue" (pg. 23). This study recommended that people take 1000-2000mg of the herb every day. This is just one study that suggests there is evidence for the belief ginseng helps with fatigue and energy levels.

However, there are some doubts as to whether current ginseng research is accurate and reliable. Bahrke et. al, (2009) report that although there are flaws in the current research, there is some evidence to suggest that ginseng "might improve cardiovascular and pulmonary function" (pg. 301) and as a result, may have the ability to improve physical performance. They also report, however, that studies based on North American ginseng does not provide any evidence that the herb can help people to feel more energised. Instead, it appears that Asian ginseng is the species most likely to be of benefit to people suffering from fatigue and low energy levels.

A specific group of people who could benefit from taking ginseng are cancer patients. A small study, reported by Better Nutrition, found that people undergoing treatment for cancer noticed they felt an increase in energy and wellbeing after taking ginseng. Participants who took a placebo instead of the ginseng did not notice the same results. No side effects were reported by the participants of this study.

My Recommendation

If you are considering taking ginseng supplements, I would recommend you talk to your doctor first of all to get all of the information you need. It is good to do your own research online about this herb, but your doctor is the expert!

Reference List

Bahrke, M.S., Morgan, W.P., & Stegner, A., (2009). Is ginseng an erogogenic aid? International Journal of Sport Nutrition & Exercise Metabolism. 19(3) 298-322. Retrieved March 4th, 2010, from Academic Search Premier.

Better Nutrition (2007). Ginseng: Energy tonic for cancer patients? 69(10) 13. Retrieved March 4th, 2010, from Academic Search Premier.

Bowden, J., (2008). Eating and energy: A holiday survival kit. Better Nutrition 70(12) 22-46. Retrieved March 4th, 2010, from Academic Search Premier.

Starbuck, J.J., (1999). Ginseng and the roots of energy. Better Nutrition 61(8) (Online version). Retrieved March 4th, 2010, from Academic Search Premier.

Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    • sasanqua profile imageAUTHOR

      Sophie 

      8 years ago from Sydney, Australia

      Thanks :)

    • epigramman profile image

      epigramman 

      8 years ago

      ..well if ya gotta know I tried it but ginseng dosen't work as well as frolicking through many of your fine hubs .....

    working

    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, hubpages.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://hubpages.com/privacy-policy#gdpr

    Show Details
    Necessary
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Features
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Marketing
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Statistics
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)