Ginseng is a plant used in traditional Chinese medicine, especially for its many pharmaceutical properties: energizing, balancing but also as an aphrodisiac,
Ginseng is one of the best-known plants in traditional Chinese medicine: and for good reason, the Chinese associated it as a remedy for all ailments. This is evidenced by the etymology of its scientific name: Panax comes from the Greek word “Pan” which means “everything” and from “akos” meaning “to cure/remedy”. A meaning that further underlines the immense diversity of its benefits.
Ginseng is called “Man Root” because it has a shape that is similar to the human body. The word “Ginseng” comes from the Chinese term “renshen”, which also means “man root”.
Also called “root of life” or “root of immortality” in Asia, it is considered to be the most powerful plant there, so powerful that it could restore the vitality of even the weakest individuals. This would also explain why ginseng is so expensive: indeed, a root can reach prices that often rival those of famous works of art (a mature wild root of the best quality is estimated at around US $ 200,000 – especially since the plant is endangered).
Ginseng contains more than a hundred nutrients: vitamins (B1, B2, B3, B5, B6, B9, B12, C and E), mineral salts (iron, phosphorus, and potassium), nutrients (lipids, proteins, and carbohydrates), trace elements and enzymes.
It was introduced to the West by the Jesuits in the 18th century. The legend even tells that Louis XIV consumed it until the end of his life.
The 10 benefits of ginseng
1. Anti-stress and anti-fatigue
Ginseng is known to provide energy: it stimulates, in fact, our physical and mental activity, that is why it is recommended to those who are weak and tired.
Ginseng is also a formidable weapon against stress because it improves the ability of the body to adapt to internal or external disturbances.
2. Improves cognitive functions
Ginseng has the power to improve cognitive functions: it improves, among other things, memory and acts positively on our ability to focus.
3. A powerful anti-inflammatory
Researchers who write in BioMed Central’s open access Journal of Translational Medicine demonstrated that this superfood, that is leveraged in Chinese and Asian medicine, has anti-inflammatory virtues.
Allan Lau andhis team of researchers from the University of Hong Kong have identified seven substances in ginseng, ginsenosides, which showed immune-suppressive effects. He said, “The anti-inflammatory role of ginseng may be due to the combined effects of these ginsenosides, targeting different levels of immunological activity, and so contributing to the diverse actions of ginseng in humans”.
4. Slows the risk of developing carcinogenic cells
Ginseng contains substances that have anti-cancer properties. Some studies conducted in Asia have also shown that high consumption of this plant was associated with a lower risk of cancer.
5. Hair loss
Due to its many minerals and trace elements, ginseng acts on our body by reducing nutritional deficiencies and therefore their consequences – one of the main ones being hair loss.
6. Low libido and erectile dysfunction
Ginseng has been considered for over 4000 years as a miracle cure against the decline of libido by the Chinese. This plant would have a vasodilating effect, resulting in a better flow of blood in the penis, therefore better erections.
Many men suffering from erectile dysfunction take ginseng as a remedy. A Korean study conducted in 2002 also revealed that 60 % of men who took ginseng have noticed a considerable improvement. Another study published in the British Journal of Clinical Pharmacology confirms the evidence of the effectiveness of red ginseng in the treatment of impotence disorders.
7. Strengthens the immune system
It also has the power to strengthen the immune system of the elderly or weak, thus improving general well-being.
It has always been referred to as: “the root of immortality”! That’s because it is rich in amino acids, vitamins, and minerals. Ginseng would have the ability to slow down the aging process of our organism, notably helping to reduce wrinkles!
9. Reduces menstrual or post-menopausal disorders
Women in menopause often resort to ginseng because it would stimulate the production of estrogen, thereby reducing the symptoms of menopause (fatigue, insomnia or depression). It is also commonly used in the treatment of menstrual disorders.
10. Glowing skin
Drinking ginseng tea rehydrates the skin and promotes better cell regeneration by increasing oxygenation of the skin cells. It also stimulates blood circulation and detoxifies the blood, which makes our skin more beautiful, toxin-free, and therefore a better complexion.