One of the oldest living tree species, ginkgo (Ginkgo biloba) produces a herb known as the ‘living fossil’. A single ginkgo tree can live for 1,000 years and reach a height of 120ft.

Traditionally been used for treating blood disorders and enhancing memory, ginkgo improves blood circulation by opening the blood vessels. It’s rich in flavonoids that protect the heart muscle, nerves, retina and blood vessels from damage. Antioxidants found in the leaves (flavonoids and terpenoids) destroy free radicals and prevent them from damaging the DNA and other cells.

Ginkgo protects nerve cells that are damaged in Alzheimer’s disease and dementia, and improves learning and memory.[1,2,3,4,5,6] 

Why Is It Effective
Gingko biloba’s antioxidant properties provide relief from symptoms of depression such as sleep impairment and weakened memory.[7] In a study published in The Journal of Pharmacy and Pharmacology, kaempfero (an active ingredient in Ginkgo biloba leaves) was found to be a potential neuroprotectant and a powerful antidepressant.[8] Gingko also helps relieve anxiety.[9]

How To Take It
1. You can take a 12omg ginkgo supplement, once a day for 8 weeks to see a difference. To buy them, click here.

2. Alternatively, make a soothing tea by steeping one ginkgo teabag in a cup of boiling water for 10 mins. Have it twice a day. To buy the tea bags, click here.

For more interesting stories, visit our Health page and read about other Natural Remedies here.

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Ginkgo Biloba: A Powerful Herb

1. Christen Y. Oxidative stress and Alzheimer disease. Am J Clin Nutr. 2000 Feb;71(2):621S-629S. Review. PubMed PMID: 10681270.

2. Andrieu S, Gillette S, Amouyal K, Nourhashemi F, Reynish E, Ousset PJ, Albarede JL, Vellas B, Grandjean H; EPIDOS study. Association of Alzheimer’s disease onset with ginkgo biloba and other symptomatic cognitive treatments in a population of women aged 75 years and older from the EPIDOS study. J Gerontol A Biol Sci Med Sci. 2003 Apr;58(4):372-7. PubMed PMID: 12663701.

3. Amieva H, Meillon C, Helmer C, Barberger-Gateau P, Dartigues JF. Ginkgo biloba extract and long-term cognitive decline: a 20-year follow-up population-based study. PLoS One. 2013;8(1):e52755. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0052755. Epub 2013 Jan 11. PubMed PMID: 23326356; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC3543404.

4. Birks J, Grimley Evans J. Ginkgo biloba for cognitive impairment and dementia. Cochrane Database Syst Rev. 2009 Jan 21;(1):CD003120. doi:
10.1002/14651858.CD003120.pub3. Review. PubMed PMID: 19160216.

5. Wang BS, Wang H, Song YY, Qi H, Rong ZX, Wang BS, Zhang L, Chen HZ. Effectiveness of standardized ginkgo biloba extract on cognitive symptoms of dementia with a six-month treatment: a bivariate random effect meta-analysis. Pharmacopsychiatry. 2010 May;43(3):86-91. doi: 10.1055/s-0029-1242817. Epub 2010 Jan 26. PubMed PMID: 20104449.

6. Vellas B, Coley N, Ousset PJ, Berrut G, Dartigues JF, Dubois B, Grandjean H, Pasquier F, Piette F, Robert P, Touchon J, Garnier P, Mathiex-Fortunet H, Andrieu S; GuidAge Study Group. Long-term use of standardised Ginkgo biloba extract for the prevention of Alzheimer’s disease (GuidAge): a randomised placebo-controlled trial. Lancet Neurol. 2012 Oct;11(10):851-9. doi: 10.1016/S1474-4422(12)70206-5. Epub 2012 Sep 6. Review. PubMed PMID: 22959217.

7. Hemmeter U, Annen B, Bischof R, Brüderlin U, Hatzinger M, Rose U, Holsboer-Trachsler E. Polysomnographic effects of adjuvant ginkgo biloba therapy in patients with major depression medicated with trimipramine. Pharmacopsychiatry. 2001 Mar;34(2):50-9. PubMed PMID: 11302564.

8. Sloley, B. D., Urichuk, L. J., Morley, P., Durkin, J., Shan, J. J., Pang, P. K. T. and Coutts, R. T. (2000). Identification of Kaempferol as a Monoamine Oxidase Inhibitor and Potential Neuroprotectant in Extracts of Ginkgo Biloba Leaves. Journal of Pharmacy and Pharmacology, 52: 451–459. doi: 10.1211/0022357001774075

9. Kuribara H, Weintraub ST, Yoshihama T, Maruyama Y. An anxiolytic-like effect of Ginkgo biloba extract and its constituent, ginkgolide-A, in mice. J Nat Prod. 2003 Oct;66(10):1333-7. PubMed PMID: 14575433