Ginkgo is a beautiful deciduous conifer, known as maidenhair tree, is among the oldest plants on the planet, dating back at least 200 million years. These long-lived trees, sometimes living a thousand years, have a special affinity for the aged.
Students, scholars, and thinkers of all sorts find ginkgo leaf's ability to improve memory nothing short of astounding. Use of this powerful herb results in increased learning power, better concentration, and sharper mental skills.
Extensive studies show use of ginkgo leaves increases blood flow to the brain and helps prevent damage due to oxygen deficiency. Ginkgo also improves peripheral blood circulation and eyesight if due to poor circulation. It enhances one's mood and sociability, and helps ease anxiety and tension. Several elderly friends have told me their memory and mood improved after taking 40 drops of ginkgo tincture twice a say for several weeks. An ally for those suffering with Alzheimer's or senility ginkgo is used to treat and prevent geriatric dementia.
Ginkgo helps boost the transmission of signals through deteriorating nerves. It contains antioxidants which neutralize free radicals and slow aging.
Ginkgo's ability to decrease the formation of blood clots helps minimize strokes. Any condition that can be eased by improved blood flow will be helped by consistent use ginkgo. Ginkgo increases walking distance for elderly patients with leg pain brought on by poor circulation. An excellent ally for those dealing with impotence, ginkgo enhances blood flow of penile arteries and veins, without any change systemic blood pressure. A dose of 20-30 drops of tincture, twice daily, gets results.
Ginkgo leaves contain flavonoids, glycosides, lactones, proanthocyaniines, nonflavonoid terpenes, bilobalide, ginkgolides, sitosterol, essential oil, and tannins. They are high in chromium, niacin, calcium, phosphorus, selenium, and zinc, and contain iron, potassium, sodium, thiamine, and vitamin A.
The ginkgolides are as effective treating irregular heartbeats as standard pharmaceutical drugs. Ginkgo tincture (40drops three times daily) strengthens the cardiac system by increasing arterial tone, reducing inflammation in blood vessel walls, and retarding blood cell clumping.
In cases of auditory nerve damage, ginkgo is an excellent ally. A 13-month study of 103 chronic sufferers of tinnitus showed improvement in every patient after about six weeks.
Ginkgo can be safely used when taking most medications, including prescription pharmaceuticals. There has been no report of any serious side effects, or any known drug interaction. However, when initially using ginkgo, there is some chance of transient headache or dizziness. If this should occur, reduce the dosage by half and then gradually increase over the next four to six weeks to the recommended dosage level.
Although extremely rare, other possible side effects form the use of ginkgo include dermatitis, irritability, restlessness, diarrhea, and vomiting. If you experience any of these side effects, reduce the dosage.
Ginkgo is an easy, but slow, tree to grow. It prefers full sun. At maturity, ginkgoes are as wide as they are tall. The tree is a beautiful addition to the landscape, with unusual lacy leaves looking like miniature Chinese fans. There are make and female ginkgo trees, but I've heard it takes twenty years before you can tell the difference. The medicinal properties of ginkgo leaves are the same whether male and female, although only the female produces the nut, which is a tan-orange color and shaped like a plum. The fleshy nut covering stinks as the nut ripen and fall off the tree, making quite a mess.
Ginkgo is among the last trees to bring out their spring leaves. I think they tell a secret about survival through time and changes: curbing impatience and impulsive action. Graceful ginkgo reminds me to hold tight until the moment is right.
Although they resist disease, pollutants, and insect damage, ginkgo trees do need protection from kids and farm animals.
I gather ginkgo leaves form summer through fall, using both green and yellow leaves. I dry them on screens, or tincture them fresh in alcohol or vinegar.
•Absentmindedness • Anxiety • Confusion • Depression
• Difficulty concentrating • Dizziness • Headache • Lack of
Energy • Memory loss • Tiredness • Tinnitus • Weakness
We offer ginkgo as a simple extract. You'll also find it as an ingredient in our Adaptogen Blend - Clarity, Focus & Concentration.