Ginkgo Biloba Benefits as Blood Thinner and Circulation Booster
Ginkgo biloba is one of the most popular supplements all over the world. It has been used medicinally for literally thousands of years and is attainable only from the ginkgo tree. Since the leaves of the tree can be toxic, the only safe way to take gingko is in supplement form. And, many people do just that. The plant is best known for its ability to promote good cognitive health and a healthy brain. But, there are so many other ginkgo biloba benefits to consider. In terms of an herbal remedy, gingko can quite possibly be considered a super supplement.
Anti inflammatory herbs are numerous and they are useful in combating the symptoms of certain conditions like fibromyalgia and osteoarthritis. They can be useful in place of medications when deemed safe to relieve inflammation from everyday irritants. Gingko is considered to be one of many anti inflammatory herbs and works by interfering with inflammatory compounds when they are released. In fact, it is the very same blocking mechanism of action that provide the blood thinning ginkgo biloba benefits.
Flavonoid glycosides found within ginkgo as well as ginkgolide B may be responsible for the herb’s blood thinning effects. For people with thickened blood as a result of certain health conditions or lifestyle factors, an herbal supplement of ginkgo may reduce the risk of blood clots similarly to the way that garlic blood thinner supplements do, by blocking the platelet clumping action of the blood. There are many natural blood thinning herbs and while they are all potentially effective at turning thick blood into thin blood, there are some risks associated with their use. People with medical conditions who are taking blood thinner medications should not use ginkgo biloba. Even if the use of the supplement is for other reasons such as cognitive function, the body does not know which ginkgo biloba benefits the supplement is for and the blood may become too thin if ginkgo is used with medications designed for the same purpose. In otherwise healthy people however, ginkgo may be used in safe dosages for a multitude of health benefits, including a potentially reduced risk of blood clots.
Cardiovascular health can take advantage of gingko biloba benefits in other ways as well. The herb is thought to be a natural means to increase circulation. This happens in two ways. The herb’s place amongst natural blood thinners is one, as thinner blood is more easily able to move throughout the body, delivering healthy oxygen and removing wastes. But, ginkgo can also increase circulation in another way, by improving blood flow. In fact, ginkgo has been shown to be effective in people suffering from the symptoms of intermittent claudication in the lower legs, thanks to its ability to increase circulation.
Recent studies have also shown that ginkgo biloba benefits may also be effective at lowering blood pressure. It is quite possible that the herb’s ability to potentially reduce elevated blood pressure may be due to its circulatory benefits. Like many other purported uses for ginkgo, more study is needed to determine whether or not the herb does in fact reduce blood pressure, but initial studies have shown some promise.
It is very important to remember that although there are many gingko biloba benefits to the body, there are some side effects that may occur with its use and a wide variety of potential drug interactions, most notably any on the blood thinners list of prescriptions. Although it is normally considered safe for use (although it should never be given to children and should be avoided by pregnant women) some people experience dizziness or headaches when using the herb. And, heart palpitations have been encountered by some using ginkgo. Gastrointestinal troubles like nausea, gas and diarrhea have also occurred in people taking ginkgo. Additionally, the herb may interact with medications like blood thinners, NSAIDS, antidepressants and several others. This is why it is always imperative to discuss gingko biloba benefits and risks with a health care provider before use. Serious interactions with medications and conditions can and have occurred.
As with all herbal therapies, the use of gingko should not occur in place of medical advice or treatment. It can however be useful in healthy people to stave off certain illnesses or conditions. When used as directed, it is generally safe and ginkgo biloba benefits are plentiful – adding a supplement can potentially contribute to better cardiovascular health, reduced symptoms of some everyday ails and greater cognitive capacity.