Traditional Chinese medicine
Chinese Herbal - Ginseng
Ginseng root has been cherished as a disease-preventive and a life preserver in traditional Chinese medicine for thousands of years. Ginseng’s primary active ingredients, ginsenosides, have been found by modern researchers to be the essencial elements to support the claimed medicinal usage of Ginseng. Some evidents have provided the support for use of Ginseng for diabetes, hypertension, resisting fatigue, increasing oxygen utilization, fighting against aging, increase memory and mental performance, and boosting immune systems.
True Ginseng is usually referred to the two main species of Ginseng, Asian Ginseng and American Ginseng. Asian Ginsend (Panax ginseng) is mainly grown in China and Korea. American Ginseng(Panax Quinquefolium) is originally found in eastern Canada and the United States. Ginseng is marketed in two basic categories: wild ginseng and cultivated. The older the ginseng plant, the more desirable it is because of the nutritional ingredient is thought to increase with age. Chinese prefer wild ginseng over cultivated one because it is usually hard to find and older in age compare to the cultivated. Wild ginseng is usually found in mountainous forests where is difficult to hunt. The average wild ginseng found is in the age of 10 to 30 years old. Ginsengs over 25 years old are scarce and very precious. Cultivated ginseng is usually harvested after three or four years or longer. Better version of cultivated ginseng is the one that is grown in the forest with a environment similar to the wild one and not harvested until 8-10 years of age.
Ginger could be further categorized by the method of processing. White Asia ginseng is the ginseng root which has been dry naturally. When the ginseng root is processed using steam and heat before it is dried, it becomes red ginseng. The heat process is to help stimulate the active properties in ginseng. Chinese regard red ginseng is ‘warmer’ than white ginseng in nature and thus suit for different remedy purpose. Korean red ginseng is a well known kind of red ginseng. Since it is ‘warm’ in nature, Chinese considered it is ‘Yang’ tonic, beneficial to spleen and lungs. It is often found in traditional Chinese remedy prescription for lethargy, impotence, and arthritis, etc. American ginseng is usually naturally dried. It is very popular in Asia for calming the mind, restoring a balance of body, stimulating the body’s own immune systems to fight against illness.
Lots of research on ginseng have been done on the most essential constituent of ginseng, ginsenosides. There are various forms of ginsenosides have been discovered in ginseng like Ra, Rb, Rc, Rd, and so on. Other compounds also have been found in ginseng to have bioactive effects, such as vitamins B, thiamin, riboflavin, niacin, and many others, which may contribute over-all benefits to human being’s health.
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