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Herb Highlight: Ginkgo Biloba

Herb Highlight: Ginkgo Biloba

Parts Used: Leaves, fruits
Benefits: This herb is among those on the top of my list for longevity and well-being. In fact, I suggest it to everyone over 40, recommends it highly to everyone over 50, and prescribes it diligently to those over 60.

The active ingredients of ginkgo leaf improve circulation and vasodilation. Though this action is evidenced throughout the entire body, it is most noted in the cerebral region. It is a promising remedy for age-related declines in brain function such as Alzheimer’s, strokes, and short- or long-term memory loss. Ginkgo is also an antioxidant and is useful against free radicals, substances that damage cellular health and accelerate aging.

While most of the literature written about ginkgo focuses on its great memory-enhancing qualities, some of its other outstanding features are overlooked. One of the best herbs for the circulatory system, it serves as a cardiac tonic by increasing the strength of the arterial walls. It also reduces inflammation in the blood vessels, and helps prevent platelet aggregation and blood clotting that can lead to blocked arteries. it is one of the best herbs available for promoting blood flow and oxygenation throughout the entire body.

Suggested uses: Regular use of ginkgo improves mental stability and memory function and increases mental vitality. It is also an excellent herb for vertigo and is an effective remedy for tinnitus, or ringing in the ear. To be effective, ginkgo must be used with consistency for two to four months. Though the effects of ginkgo are not sudden or dramatic, if taken over a period of time there is a noticeable increase of memory and vitality.

Preparation tips: Some studies suggest that ginkgo doesn’t break down in water, but I have found it wonderfully effective as a tea. And since the ancients used it primarily in a water base, I’m unsure where that conclusion comes from. As a tea for memory it blends well with sage, rosemary, and gotu kola. As a circulatory tea, blend it with hawthorn and lemon balm. For stress and anxiety, especially when it’s mental worry, blend it with oats and nettle. Ginkgo is often sold in tinctures and capsules too. Both are very effective when using good-quality products.

Read more: Health, Natural Remedies

Adapted from Rosemary Gladstar's Herbs for Longevity & Well-Being by Rosemary Gladstar.Copyright (c) 1999 Rosemary Gladstar. Reprinted by permission of Storey Books.
Adapted from Rosemary Gladstar's Herbs for Longevity & Well-Being by Rosemary Gladstar

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Annie B. Bond

Annie is a renowned expert in non-toxic and green living. She was named one of the top 20 environmental leaders by Body and Soul Magazine and "the foremost expert on green living." - Body & Soul Magazine, 2009. Learn Annie's latest eco-friendly news on, a website dedicated to healthy and green living.

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Rosemary Gladstar's Herbs for Longevity and Well-Being

With Rosemary Gladstar's holistic wellness program you can find the harmony of body and mind that brings health and vitality - whatever your now


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8:02AM PST on Mar 9, 2013


7:53AM PST on Mar 9, 2013

I've taken GB, but I not sure if it's a good brand. I wish the author had recommended some...

9:39PM PDT on Sep 9, 2011

Interesting. It'd be great if it works.

10:55PM PDT on Apr 17, 2011


9:01AM PST on Jan 24, 2011

my mother use it for about 10 years for cerebral blood circulation...some studies only showed its good placebo efect...

11:55AM PST on Dec 27, 2010

Thanks for the good news!

5:46PM PST on Nov 20, 2010

Thanks for the info.

12:16PM PDT on Jun 15, 2010

Ginko and Gotu Kola are the best remedy for regeneration of cerebral region. I can recommend them from m own experience.

7:16AM PST on Feb 3, 2010

I have heard of Gingko...

11:33AM PST on Jan 10, 2010

Hmmmmm very interesting, I didn't know the benefits for the heart as well. I used to take the Gingko in caps. before but stopped doing it ....... I am starting all over again but this time I'll be buying the tea. the gum and cookies - if so -

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Disclaimer: The views expressed above are solely those of the author and may not reflect those of
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