Famed as the king of herbs, and used for hundreds of years, is Panax ginseng the be-all and end-all when it comes to herbal medicine? Panax ginseng takes its name from the Greek word panacea meaning to ‘cure all’, and with this kind of reputation, we couldn’t help but put the famous root under the spotlight.
Here at MEDA we are fascinated by the power of nature’s herbs and plants, and one of our favourites is Panax ginseng (included in MEDA Focus). Known for its plethora of astounding healing properties, Panax ginseng (also called Asian ginseng or Korean ginseng) is a traditional Asian plant that can be eaten raw, steamed, dried into a powder, taken in capsules or used in tea.
WHY TRY PANAX GINSENG
Going back to ancient times, Panax ginseng was used to increase energy, stamina and boost the immune system. Today, although human research on Panax ginseng is limited, there’s some interesting evidence that the herb may offer certain health benefits:
The active compounds found in ginseng, ginsenosides, act as natural pesticides that protect the ginseng plant from insects and bacteria – and potentially help protect us from the stresses of daily life.
When consumed, ginseng can help regulate the release of stress hormones such as cortisol, which helps to bring balance to our HPA axis (hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal), which is susceptible to stress.
Panax ginseng has been touted as a natural stimulant and is famed for its ability to boost attention and focus. Small-scale studies have shown that ginseng can potentially help with memory, calmness and learning, and it is believed that this could be thanks to the ginsenosides found in ginseng.
We chose to add ginseng into our MEDA Focus drink for this very reason. Paired with rosemary, it can be a fantastic fuel for focus.
In traditional Chinese medicine, the herb is considered an aphrodisiac and is basically Instagram-famous for its suggested influence on men’s sexual…. function. According to one of the world’s leading medical research centres, the National Institutes of Health, Panax ginseng can moderate the symptoms of erectile dysfunction, provide men with firmer, longer-lasting erections and potentially help with impotence. However before you order boundless boxes of MEDA’s Focus, the NIH reports that more well-designed studies are needed to establish Panax ginseng’s safety and efficacy as a treatment for this common sexual dysfunction.
And ladies don’t feel left out. A small number of studies have shown that Panax ginseng may help women’s libido while going through the menopause. We don’t yet know the exact mechanism as to how Panax ginseng works its magic on our sex drive, it is believed that it works by enabling the body to adjust to stress, which in turn means fewer variations in our sex drive.
HOW TO TAKE PANAX GINSENG?
Panax ginseng can be consumed in many ways. If you can get your hands on the real deal, it can be eaten steamed or raw — be our guest and let us know how it tastes!
For the majority of us, the simplest way would be to take it as a supplement, in a tincture, tea or in MEDA Focus.
There are no reported side effects of taking Panax Ginseng, however those on diabetes medications should be mindful of their blood sugar levels in case of interactions. Always inform your health care provider before adding herbs or supplements to your regime.