Ginkgo (Ginkgo biloba)
Ginkgo is the oldest living tree species. A single specimen can live up to 1,000 years and grow as tall as 120 feet. Its distinctive fan-shaped leaves have been found fossilized from the Jurassic period. The fruit of the tree is inedible and rather foul-smelling.
Key Medicinal Uses
Internally Ginkgo is used frequently to treat dementia, Alzheimer's symptoms and memory. Patients who have used the herb as an herbal remedy for these ailments have experienced an improvement in thinking, learning, memory, social behavior and ability to take part in everyday activities. It may also be effective against eye problems like macular degeneration. It is also helpful for increasing blood circulation in problems like intermittent claudication, where the patient experiences pain in the legs due to lack of circulation. It is also working well with tinnitus, which is a ringing of the ears.
It is also showing promise in relieving menopausal symptoms as well as eliminating risk factors for osteoporosis and cardiovascular disease.
Externally Not used externally
Leaves The leaf of the ginkgo tree is used medicinally in the form of tablets, capsules, tincture and herbal tea.
Ginkgo biloba extract is considered a safe herb and very few have reactions to it. Reactions to look for include stomach upset, headache, dizziness and skin reactions. The herb decreases clotting and some people who have used it have reported bleeding complications. It is not understood however if these complications are due to the herb alone or if these situations were a combination of ginkgo and blood thinning medications.
Pregnant and nursing mothers should not use this herbal remedy. If you're going to have surgery, stop taking it at least 36 hours prior to your procedure.
Ginkgo may interact with other medications. If you are taking anticonvulsants, antidepressants, antihypertensives, anticoagulants (blood thinners), diabetic medications, cyclosporine, thiazide diuretics or trazadone, consult your physician before taking.
Do not give to children under 12.
Preparation and Dosage
Ginkgo works somewhat slowly, so expect to wait 4 to 6 weeks for results. 120 mg per day is usually given for memory and cardiovascular treatment. Up to 240 mg separated into smaller doses may be required in dementia cases.
Ginkgo Herbal Remedies Top