Korean ginseng, also known as Panax Ginseng or Asian Ginseng is adaptogenic and according to Traditional Chinese Medicine a “hot stimulant” to the system so good for people who suffer from the cold and “damp” conditions in the body.
Ginsengs vary according the the quantity of the active compounds called ginsenosides. Differences in levels of the eight major ginsenosides are thought to account for the plants' varying characteristics. For example, Asian ginseng contain similar quantities of the ginsenosides Rb1 and Rg1, while American ginseng has very little Rg1. Rg1 is regarded as a central nervous system (CNS) stimulant, fatigue fighter, enhancer of mental performance. This is why Asian Ginseng is used to combat fatigue and improve energy and American Ginseng has a more calming effect on the body.
Ginseng shows promise for improving heart health, including anti-hypertensive effects and protection against heart failure.17 Asian ginseng, in particular, may protect against symptoms of heart disease and support healthy cholesterol levels.
Evidence is accumulating that Asian ginseng may have neuroprotective properties, including maintaining homeostasis and anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, anti-apoptotic, and immune-stimulatory activities.
Ginseng is potentially useful for Parkinson's disease, Alzheimer's disease, Huntington's disease, multiple sclerosis, and other neurological disorders.
Asian ginseng's antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties appear useful as a promising neuroprotective strategy in stroke.
According to a study published in Frontiers in Cellular Neuroscience, "It can prevent neuronal death as a result of stroke, thus decreasing anatomical and functional stroke damage.”
Ginseng is a powerful stimulant to the immune systmem and useful to help prevent illness. Asian ginseng stimulates the immune system. In one study, those who took 400 mg of Asian ginseng daily for four months had fewer colds, and those they did come down with were shorter in duration. Perfect when cold and flu season comes around.
And the most common use for taking ginseng is to increase both mental and physical energy. Asian ginseng also appears to boost alertness as well as thinking and learning. So if you’ve got a big exam coming up or work is getting crazy it’s time to get Ginseng’d up!
So how do we use it? Ginseng is best taken in the morning as it will increase your energy levels for the day and may lead to insomnia if taken at night. You can add it to your smoothie or just take the capsules with food.
Short-term use of ginseng is considered to be safe among adults. It is best taken in cycles, such as every day for two to three weeks, then taking a break for two to three weeks. You should use caution using ginseng if you're pregnant or breastfeeding, or if you're taking certain medications, including:
Blood-thinning medications such as warfarin
Antidepressants called MAOIs (monoamine oxidase inhibitors)