Ginseng is the root of plants in genus Panax. There are two main types of ginseng including Panax ginseng (Asian ginseng) and Panax quinquefolius (American ginseng). This plant can be found in climates that are cool such as Northeast China, Korean Peninsula, Far East Russia, Canada, as well as parts of the United States.
History of ginseng
Traditionally, ginseng has been used for an alternative to medicine for certain ailments and chronic illness and while it has been used in Chinese medicine for centuries, modern research has yet to confirm the effect this root may have on treating issues and conditions. The American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) believes that ginseng could be selectively offered to individual patients with breast cancer to help with treatment-related fatigue under the guidance of health professionals.
The active ingredients found in the plant are called ginsenosides. These unique ingredients inside the plant were discovered sometime in the twentieth century. This discovery has created more than five thousand published clinical and research studies.
Why ginseng is so important?
Researchers discovered that ginseng has a variety of pharmacologically activities that may help with certain medical issues. Some of those issues include:
Everyone experiences a certain degree of fatigue throughout the day but if you have been dealing with more than normal, a supplement of ginseng may be the answer.
Lowering blood sugar levels
It’s not easy to get those blood sugar levels down once they climb up. Using supplements, such as ginseng can help promote healthy blood glucose levels.
Boosting immune systems
Today, more than ever, it is time to work on building your own immune system. In the past, food was the main source of vitamins, minerals, and nutrients the body needs in order to function. Unfortunately, the food today does not contain as much of the necessary nutrients needed in order to keep the immune system in tip top shape. Supplements such as ginseng can potentially play a part in a stronger immune system by regulating immune cells.
Ginseng is known to contain antioxidants that could play a role in inflammation reduction.
Supporting brain function
It’s normal for brain function to have highs and lows throughout the day however, if you feel as though yours is staying more in the lows than the highs, adding a supplement of ginseng can help catch the lows before it happens so you can stay on your game throughout the day. Ginseng is traditionally used in Herbal Medicine to help support cognitive function and reduce mental fatigue in cases of metal stress.
Improving erectile dysfunction
For those who suffer from erectile dysfunction, studies show using a supplement of ginseng can improve nitric oxide production, which happens to be the compound the body produces to relax the penis and improve overall blood flow.
Cancer prevention: Ginseng produces ginsenosides, which may have potential in helping to decrease the inflammation in the body. During the cell cycle process, the cells grow and divide as normal. Ginsenosides might help the cycle and prevent any cell production to grow abnormally to reduce the risk of developing cancer.
Types of ginseng: Panax ginseng vs. American ginseng
Panax ginseng and American ginseng are the two main types of ginseng. Panax ginseng is known as Asian ginseng used for thousands of years for alternative medicine. This type of ginseng is considered an adaptogen herb because it can help to lower the body’s sensitivity it experiences to stress.
American ginseng has history that dates back to native Americans who used it as medicine. It was once found to be growing in ample supply around areas such as Pennsylvania and New York but was later over harvested causing the plant to lose its value and eventually become rare.
Panax ginseng is mainly grown in the mountains of East Asia while American ginseng is considered native to eastern North America. Grown in the different climates and soil conditions, panax ginseng and American ginseng are composed of different ginsenosides, which leads to their different chemical bioactivities. Generally, American ginseng is considered cooler in nature and less stimulating than Asian ginseng that is considered warmer.
Is older ginseng better?
Generally speaking, the older the ginseng plant, the better it is overall. If ginseng is growing wild, it can be better than the cultivated ginseng. The reason for the older and wilder plant being better is because the root of the ginseng contains more ginsenosides.
It is interesting that studies have found that the ginsenoside content is higher in the leaf and root-hair, and lower in stem than that in other parts of Panax ginseng. The content of ginsenosides in root and root-hair increases with increase in age of Panax ginseng from one to five years. However, the total content of ginsenosides in Panax ginseng leaf decreases with the increase in age.
Korean red ginseng vs. American ginseng, which is stronger and why?
The question whether Korean red ginseng is stronger than American ginseng is frequently asked among customers. In fact, they can’t be equally compared since they belong to different angle of classification.
Comparing red ginseng to white ginseng is not difficult to do. After being harvested, fresh ginseng will be processed with different methods. White ginseng is peeled and dried to reduce water content in the air or sun. Red ginseng is steamed at a high temperature and then dried or sun-dried. The red ginseng after heating processing increases rare ginsenoside content, including rare ginsenosides Rg3 and Rg5.
Korean red ginseng cannot be compared directly with American ginseng. It is ginsenoside content that matters. Korean red ginseng that holds higher amounts of ginsenosides, is sure to be stronger than American white ginseng. However, American ginseng extract that is processed with heating method also contains favorable ginsenoside amounts.
Ginsenosides types: prototype ginsenosides vs. rare ginsenosides
Ginsenosides are found in ginseng and are considered the main medicinal components of ginseng. These compounds are the main reason why ginseng is beneficial to your health. There are over one hundred different types of ginsenosides that have already been identified. Ginsenosides like Rb1, Rg1, Rc, Rd, etc. are naturally occurring ginsenosides (known as prototype ginsenosides) dominant in ginseng. Unfortunately, these prototype ginsenosides are large molecular weight, which usually leads to poor bioactivity and absorption in the human body.
Researchers have been working on converting prototype ginsenoside into rare ginsenosides Rg3 and Rh2. For example, Korean red ginseng can be processed with heating methods to produce increased rare ginsenoside Rh3 which are converted from prototype ginsenosides such as Rb1, Rb2, and Rd.
With years of research, scientists have been able to produce more bioactive rare ginsenosides. Rare ginsenosides Rg3, Rh1, and Rh2 can be further metabolized into more bioactive ginsenosides Rk1 and Rg5, Rk3 and Rh4, and Rk2 and Rh3 respectively through acid transformation. These highly bioactive rare ginsenosides show strong bioactivity and can deliver more potent health benefits.
Which are the best ginseng extracts to buy in 2021?
There are many choices today when it comes to buying ginseng. In fact, there are so many choices that you may feel overwhelmed. When buying ginseng, you will most likely seek for a ginseng supplement with high amounts of highly bioactive metabolized rare ginsenosides.
The extraction and biotransformation of rare ginsenosides involves a series of high technologies, and only a few companies own these technologies, which is why we hardly see rare ginsenoside supplement in the current market.
What we usually see in the current market are ginseng extracts standardized with about 4%-10% of total ginsenosides. The total ginsenosides are the sum of all qualified ginsenosides, mainly composed of prototype ginsenosides and they are surely not what we intend to look for to obtain maximal health benefits. Some ginseng extracts contain rare ginsenoside Rg3 are better choices since Rg3 is a rare ginsenoside monomer with potent activity.
Among so many ginseng supplements, a Canadian rare ginsenoside brand called Redsenol stands out prominently with 20% rare ginsenoside content.
The Redsenol research team is reported to have been engaged in ginsenoside research for many years and owns core technologies in rare ginsenoside extraction, processing, transformation, and formulation, which enable the preparation of easily absorbable rare ginsenosides in large amounts.
Their product Redsenol-1 capsules feature sixteen different types of rare ginsenosides, including Rk2, Rg3(S,R), Rh2(S,R), Rg5, Rk1, Rk3, Rh1(S,R), Rh3, Rh4, aPPT(S,R) and aPPD(S,R). The rare ginsenoside content in Redsenol-1 capsules reaches 20%, far higher than its counterparts. A daily dosage of 360 mg of highly bioactive and absorbable rare ginsenosides are super potent to empower health and wellness.