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Panax: Short term effects

by Paul Bergner

Medical Herbalism 2(3):5

Ginseng is usually taken for thirty days or more before the full benefits can be judged. Research demonstrates that ginseng also has an immediate stimulant effect, even from a single dose. One study found an effect equivalent to that of caffeine. Ginseng may preferable to caffeine for appropriate individuals in situations such as night work, or driving long distance.

All 133 subjects in Siegel’s study of habitual users reported an immediate stimulant effect. (Siegel)

Ginseng or a placebo were administered to one hundred Russian soldiers before a 3 km race. Soldiers who had taken ginseng completed the course in an average of 53 seconds faster than the others. (Fulder)

Wireless operators and telegraphists made fewer mistakes on tests for mental concentration and coordination after taking ginseng. (Fulder)

Thirty-three young students were tested for psychomotor and intellectual function in a double blind study. A single-dose of ginseng had similar anti-fatigue effects to caffeine. (Sandberg)

Night duty nurses in a London hospital who took ginseng for three successive days reported feeling more tranquil and alert during their work and performed better during a test for speed and coordination than the placebo group. (Fulder et al.)

References

Siegel, RK. “Ginseng abuse syndrome.” JAMA 241:15;1614-1615. (1979)

Fulder, S. The Tao of Medicine: Ginseng Oriental Remedies and the Pharmacology of Harmony. Inner Traditions Int. New York. 1982.

Sandberg, F. “Clinical effcts of ginseng preparation. In: Proceedings of the International Ginseng Symposium. Seoul. Korean Ginseng Research Institute. 1974.

Fulder, S; Hallstrom,C; Carruthers, M. “The effects of ginseng on the performance of nurses on night duty. In: Proceedings of the International Ginseng Symposium. Seoul. Korean Ginseng Research Institute. 1974.
 
Copyright 2001 Paul Bergner            240