Ginkgo biloba, sometimes referred to as the “maidenhair tree”, is a hardy and adaptable deciduous tree that can reach a height of up to 50 feet. It has unique fan-shaped leaves that turn bright yellow in the fall. Fossilized leaves of the Ginkgo tree have been found that date as far back as 270 million years ago, earning it the reputation of being the world’s oldest living tree. The species is also distinctive because it has changed very little over all that time and has no evolutionary close relatives.
Ginkgo has played an important part in the Chinese culture for thousands of years, both spiritually and medicinally. The tree was worshipped for its longevity, vitality, and yin/yang qualities. Early uses of the Ginkgo tree focused on stewing the nutlike seeds to provide a beneficial tonic that was used for lung, cardiovascular, and kidney support.* Since the mid to late 1900s, leaf extracts have been more commonly used in western medicine, primarily for cognitive enhancement and improving circulation.* In Europe and the United States today, products containing Ginkgo biloba are among the top nutritional supplements sold in the industry.
Ginkgo is one of the most studied medicinal herbs. Bioactive components that have been identified include terpenoids Ginkgolide A, B, C, and Bilobalide, and flavonoids such as quercetin. Ginkgolides, in particular, have been clinically shown to inhibit platelet aggregation and promote increased blood flow.* Experiments show that Bilobalide has anti-oxidant and neuro-protective properties, and quercetin can may help lower corticosteroid production. The mechanisms of these and other phytochemicals support numerous in vitro and randomized clinical trials concluding the health benefits of Ginkgo biloba. Wan et al (2014) found that Ginkgo leaf extract exerted a protective effect against cell damage, blood-brain barrier disruption, and decreased amyloid-beta protein.* In 2013, Tanaka et al did a systematic review of research having to do with Ginkgo biloba and the central nervous system and concluded that the anti-oxidative and neuro-protective actions of the extract may be helpful for some people.* Another analysis of nine trial studies, published in 2015 by Tan et al, concluded that Ginkgo extract can either slow or stabilize symptoms of cognitive impairment. A 2003 study, carried out at the University of California Los Angeles Neuropsychiatric Institute, found that Ginkgo biloba significantly improved memory recall among the participants.* Ginkgo’s anti-platelet aggregation effects and potential to promote healthy bloodflow in the microcapillaries of the brain, support its usefulness in supporting optimal brain function. Additionally, ginkgo has been shown to improve memory and speed of cognitive functions in young, healthy adults.*
Ginkgo biloba extract has been determined to be safe to use at the recommended dosage, but there is some evidence that people sensitive to sumac, poison ivy, poison oak, and cashews, may have an allergic reaction to Ginkgo biloba. It is important to be under the supervision of a licensed healthcare practitioner when using any complimentary integrative medicine. BioPure’s Ginkgo extract is certified organic and contains purified water and 55-75% sugarcane ethanol.
*These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.
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