You may already have heard of ginseng, the key ingredient to countless performance-enhancing energy drinks. Yet, this mysterious perennial root has a lot more going for it…
Harvested across both East Asia and North America, traditional Chinese medicine emphasises its importance for balancing yin/yang energy. Amercian ginseng is said to help calm the body by promoting yin energy (female, negative, cold and shadow), whereas Asian ginseng energizes the body by promoting yang energy (male, positive, hot and sun).
Lesser known benefits of ginseng have been reported on a worldwide scale for hundreds of years. Let’s take a closer look at the most exciting claims, plus five revitalizing recipes for you to try out!
1. Improve Cognitive Function
The most exciting and widely reported claims involve brain-boosting qualities of ginseng. The strongest scientific support comes from a study conducted by the Medical School of Nantong University in China. It suggests that “ginseng appears to have some beneficial effects on cognition, behavior and quality of life.” Another supporting study, published in the Journal of Dairy Science, stated, “drinking 150 to 300 mL of this ginseng-enriched milk would provide the amount indicated to be effective for improving cognitive functions”.
2. Treating & Fighting Influenza
Regular ginseng consumption has been scientifically linked to the prevention and treatment of flu. If you suffer from this debilitating sickness, you should head straight to the recipes below! A report published by the International Journal of Molecular Medicine found reasonable grounds for ginseng helping to beat the flu.
3. Prevent Diabetes
This wonderful root has been linked to the prevention and treatment of diabetes by reducing the body’s insulin response. Studies have uncovered evidence of ginseng reducing blood-sugar levels, even preventing them from spiking. Korean red ginseng could be a highly beneficial supplement for Type II diabetics by reinforcing insulin and glucose regulation.
4. Reduce Risk of Cancer
American ginseng is claimed to reduce the risk of cancer (particularly colorectal) when consumed regularly. At this stage, this claim is still largely anecdotal. The American Cancer Society officially stated, “Clinical trials are still needed to determine whether it is effective in people.” Yet, a couple of experimental Asian case studies have already linked regular consumption of the root to reduced chances of cancer.
5. Reducing & Treating Effects of ADHD
One of the most surprising benefits of ginseng is linked to treating ADHD. Many have claimed it alleviates ADHD symptoms in children and teenagers. Promising results have been documented in a Korean study studying the benefits of red ginseng. If there are more studies to prove the strong correlations between Ginseng and ADHD, this implication would be profound.
6. Improve Immune System Functions
Throughout life, our immune systems have periods of highs and lows. This is largely due to changes in lifestyle, location, and other external stimuli. Luckily, many experimental studies have shown that American ginseng can reinforce and bolster immune system effectiveness. So, if you fall ill often, or need a speedy recovery, ginseng could be a highly beneficial natural supplement for you.
7. Increase Mental & Physical Energy
The most publicized benefit of ginseng is its energy boosting ability. For years, it’s been used in energy drinks, supplements, herbal teas, and more. Millions have relied on ginseng to help boost their performance. A study conducted by the Mayo Clinic found the root was successful in relieving cancer patients of extreme fatigue. The scientific community is still somewhat divided on the energy boosting qualities, yet the strong social proof is hard to ignore. After all, many athletes have been successfully using it to gain the edge during intense competitions.
8. Lessen the Effects of Erectile Dysfunction
Men with erectile dysfunction usually suffer from unprecedented mental stress. Yet, erectile dysfunction should no longer be taken as an incurable problem now. According to a 2002 Korean study, 60% of men taking ginseng supplements regularly reported significant improvement in erectile dysfunction. Similarly, a British journal found that red ginseng is effective in treating erectile dysfunction. Ginseng is a promising natural remedy for frustrated men worldwide!
Add a pinch of fire and a healthy kick using these refreshing ginseng recipes
This chicken soup uses ginseng tea, an exciting and healthy alternative to an absolute classic. Try adding your favorite vegetables to make your own version!
This extremely nutritional drink is a variation on a tea that has been consumed for hundreds, if not thousands of years. There is no better way to integrate the essential root into your daily life than this!
Perfect for cold and flu season, this tonic mixture contains a number of herbal essences and ciders to keep you warm, all season long.
Mouthwatering pork ribs delivered in a ginseng infused soup. Awaken taste buds, body, and mind with this delicious dish.
When it comes to convenience, smoothies are king. This recipe contains plenty of nutrients, anti-inflammatories, and antioxidants to help reinforce your bodily healing.
As you can see, ginseng is a joy to work into your diet. Use this unique fiery root to enhance flavors whilst fortifying both body and mind!
Featured photo credit: tarapong srichaiyos via shutterstock.com