What is Ginkgo? | The (Scientifically Proven) Benefits of Ginkgo Biloba | Blog | Alovitox Organic Superfoods

by Kirsten Ahlmark January 23, 2019 3 min read

What is Ginkgo? | The (Scientifically Proven) Benefits of Ginkgo Biloba | Blog | Alovitox Organic Superfoods

Ginkgo biloba, sometimes known as Maidenhair tree, dates back to at least 270 million years ago. Crazy, right? This tree is actually the last living species of its kind. All others in the Ginkgophyta division have gone extinct. 270 million year old fossils confirm the mighty ginkgo’s existence for all these years. [1]

 

It all started in China, where the tree is native to. Traditionally used for medicine and food, people were cultivating ginkgo early on in human history. [1]

 

Ginkgo seeds, often called ginkgo nuts from their nutty-characteristics, are a favorite in Asia. It’s often used in congee (a traditional Chinese healing dish) or for special occasions like weddings and Chinese New Year. Ever heard of the veggie dish, Buddha’s Delight? That’s traditionally made with ginkgo nuts. The seeds have also been used in Japanese dishes, as well as Thai desserts

 

COGNITIVE FUNCTION

Ginkgo leaves are what is used in many supplements on the market today for cognitive function - particularly, ability to pay attention, memory and overall focus. While evidence isn’t complete, it’s also been studied as a possible treatment for Alzheimer’s disease. Some research shows that taking ginkgo for up to one year can somewhat improve the symptoms of Alzheimer’s or other dementias. [3] There has been a study showing ginkgo biloba extract as a efficacious treatment for working memory deficits in the elderly [2]

 

ANXIETY

It hasn’t been marketed much in the supplement world for anxiety, but maybe that should change!? Research has shown that taking ginkgo extract for only 4 weeks has the ability to reduce symptoms of anxiety. [3] Maybe we should be replacing our morning coffee with morning ginkgo…who are we kidding, why can’t you have coffee AND gingko? YOU CAN - WE SUPPORT. 

 

VISION

There is some evidence linking ginkgo leaf extract consumption for 6 months to improved color vision for those suffering from retinal damage caused by diabetes. [3] Down for taking ginkgo long term? Evidence shows consuming ginkgo for up to 12 years seems to improve pre-existing visual damage from glaucoma. However, you’ve got to be in for the long run, because the evidence shows that taking it for only 4 weeks doesn’t show any improvement. [3]

 

PMS - Premenstrual syndrome

Ginkgo leaf extract, taken orally beginning the 16th day of the menstrual cycle and ending on the 5th day of the following cycle, sees to relieve breast tenderness associated with your period. Who knew? Apparently, it can help with other symptoms related to PMS as well. 

 

SCHIZOPHRENIA

Research has shown that over a 8-16 week period, daily administration of ginkgo biloba can reduce the symptoms of schizophrenia. Not only that, but taken with antipsychotic medication, haloperidol, it can also reduce the negative symptoms associated with the medication, such as constipation and dehydration. [3]

 

Depending on what you’re taking ginkgo biloba for, the dosage will vary. The minimum dosage for most studies seems to be about 80mg a day of the leaf extract. For all uses, start at a lower dose of no more than 120 mg per day, to avoid gastrointestinal effects, and you can work your way up in dosage from there. To find out what amount is right for you, consult with your doctor or herbalist. 

 

SOURCES

Kirsten Ahlmark
Kirsten Ahlmark


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