What is Ginseng? 5 Properties, Advantages and Disadvantages

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A little less than 2 decades ago, ginseng became very popular in various parts of the world, although the reality is that it had already been used for many years. The main reason for its recognition was due to the capacities attributed to it, especially in the area of health.

What is ginseng? What are its most important properties? What are the advantages and disadvantages of its use? Let’s see. 

WHAT IS GINSENG?

  • Scientific name: Panax ginseng
  • Family: Araliaceae
  • Species: Panax ginseng; C.A.Mey.
  • Kingdom: Plantae
  • Class: Magnoliopsida
  • Tribe: Aralieae

The first thing to know is that the word “ginseng” does not refer to a single plant, but to a group of these. The name of this group, translated into English, is panacea. However, in Chinese medicine, the origin of its use, there is one of these plants that stands out above the others, panax ginseng. We will talk about it below.

The use of ginseng is concentrated in the root, where the greatest amount of active principles are found, ready to provide excellent benefits. As its cultivation requires a cold climate, it is more common in the Asian continent, as well as in Russia. On the American continent, Mexico is the country that cultivates and produces ginseng.

5 PROPERTIES OF GINSENG

Eliana Delgado, nutritionist, points out different properties of ginseng. Let’s see just 5 of them.

  • Antioxidants. This capacity is thanks to beta-carotenes, which help the formation of vitamin A, ideal to avoid the effect of radicals in the body.
  • Relaxing. Stress and anxiety levels can be reduced considerably. This is because it possesses paraxanes.
  • Disinfectants. Ascorbic acid is one of the most interesting disinfectants in nature. It allows to keep the skin healthy and even heal any wound.
  • Anticoagulants. It also contains citric acid. It helps the blood to coagulate much faster than normal, avoiding hemorrhages in case of wounds.
  • Laxatives. This is possible thanks to its malic acid content.

HEALTH BENEFITS OF GINSENG

Both the properties we have mentioned, and the many others that ginseng possesses, help to take care of health. In this sense, the National Library of Medicine of the United States highlights several benefits.

INCREASES MENTAL CAPACITIES

In the case of those people who, due to the work they do, need a high degree of concentration, ginseng allows them to increase their mental capacity. Similarly, those who are already mentally exhausted, whether from a strenuous day’s work or otherwise, can recover much more quickly with the use of ginseng.

PROTECTS THE CARDIOVASCULAR SYSTEM

Thrombosis is one of the most common problems in the elderly. But, the use of ginseng allows the blood, and arteries, to be kept in optimal conditions, improving health considerably. Studies are still being conducted on the effects of ginseng on other arterial ailments. So far the results are positive.

REDUCES THE RISK OF CANCER

After several years of research, it was proven that ginseng prevents the formation of tumors. Although in some cases it only delays their growth. In any case, the person can enjoy better health for many more years, compared to those who do not make use of this plant.

REDUCES STRESS AND ITS EFFECTS

Both the accumulation of stress and the effects it causes in the body are very harmful. Thanks to the adequate consumption of ginseng, stress levels are lowered. This also protects the health of the stomach, so that the acids present in it do not raise their amount disproportionately. This prevents gastritis and other similar conditions.

CONTRIBUTES TO SEXUAL HEALTH

Both for erectile dysfunction and premature ejaculation, the use of ginseng is recommended. The success in this field is thanks to the nitric oxide it produces in the body, making it able to relax much more, increasing sexual capacity in men.

HOW TO USE GINSENG?

It offers the possibility of using it in different ways. Let’s see just 4 ways in which its properties can be obtained.

  • In meals. For this use, the powder presentation is recommended. This way it can be mixed throughout the meal, providing all its nutrients.
  • Supplements. For those who want a higher dose than normal, they can make use of this presentation. The amount to be ingested should not exceed 3 pills per day.
  • Infusion. It is one of the best ways to use it. The maximum allowed per day is 4 cups.
  • Tincture. This can be obtained in naturopathic centers and some pharmacies. After diluting a little in water, it can be consumed.

In any case, it is always necessary to ask for the help and direction of an expert, be it a nutritionist or other physician. That way you will avoid any risk when using it.

ADVANTAGES AND DISADVANTAGES OF GINSENG

This plant offers many benefits, but it is always good to be aware of the risks that may be involved in its consumption. Mayo Clinic highlights the advantages and disadvantages of its use.

Advantages:

  • It is an ally for the work performed by the brain.
  • Contributes to a good functioning of the cardiovascular system.
  • Increases the body’s defenses.
  • Reduces the risk of suffering a cerebrovascular accident.

Disadvantages:

  • It is dangerous for those who are allergic to its components.
  • By increasing brain activity, it can cause insomnia.

MEASURES TO TAKE WHEN USING GINSENG

In case that, after consuming ginseng, symptoms such as bleeding, body pains or even partial loss of vision appear, it is necessary to suspend its use and go to the doctor as soon as possible.

Among the measures to take into consideration is not to combine this medicine with antidepressants, because it can cause mental problems.

The same applies to those who use heart medications, one of the side effects being an increase in heart rate, which can be very dangerous for the person.

Ginseng has been offering many health benefits for many years. If used responsibly, you can enjoy all its properties.

German Fuertes Otero
German Fuertes Oterohttps://www.google.com/search?kgmid=/g/11p5t5jsss
CEO at PharmaSalud.net. M.D. from Stanford Medicine: Stanford, California, US, M.Sc. from University of Cambridge: Cambridge, Cambridgeshire, UK and University of Oxford: Oxford, Oxfordshire, UK. PhD at Harvard University Harvard Catalyst: Cambridge, MA, US.

Aunque pueda contener afirmaciones, datos o apuntes procedentes de instituciones o profesionales sanitarios y la información contenida en PharmaSalud esté redactada por profesionales en medicina, recomendamos al lector que cualquier duda relacionada con la salud sea consultada con un profesional del ámbito sanitario.

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