American ginseng (Panax quinquefolius) is an herb native to the eastern United States and Canada. Some of its properties include an adaptogen for adrenal gland support, antioxidant properties for cellular health, a bitter tonic, a mild central nervous system stimulant, impacts blood sugar, and acts as an immune modulator.
Like other forms of ginseng (such as Korean ginseng, or Panax ginseng), American ginseng has also been found to promote energy levels.
Active Constituents in American Ginseng
The active constituents in American Ginseng include triterpene saponins, known as ginsenosides or panaxosides. The bitter taste comes from its sesquiterpene content, and the ginseng leaves contain more ginsenosides than do the roots.
Three of American Ginseng's Health Benefits
Here's a look at three key benefits of American Ginseng:
1) American Ginseng and Blood Sugar Support
American ginseng may help regulate blood sugar, according to a 2000 study published in Archives of Internal Medicine. In a small experiment involving nine diabetes patients and 10 people without diabetes, researchers found that taking American ginseng supplements prior to eating helped keep post-meal blood sugar levels in check.
2) American Ginseng and Immune Support
American ginseng is often taken for daily immune support. It works as an immune modulator so it also used to help with occasional or seasonal allergies. One way in which American ginseng impacts immune health dysfunction is as a result of its positive affects on the HPA axis (hypothalamus >> pituitary gland >> adrenal glands). When the body is depleted because of stress, this impacts immune strength.
3) American Ginseng and Digestive Support
American Ginseng can be used as a digestive bitter. It's shown to support healthy digestion and absorption of nutrients. Chewing on a small bit of hte root can help stimuate the production of stomach acid and other digestive juices.
American Ginseng Dosage and Safety
Recommend using American Ginseng in small doses.
Tincture (1:5): 30% alcohol, 3-5 ml, three times per day
Decoction: take 1-2 tsp dried cut/sifted root to 12 oz water. Drink 4 oz three times per day.
Avoid if pregnant, breastfeeding, or taking a blood thinning medication such as Warfarin (Coumadin).
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