• Improves cognitive performance and enhances memory. [2]
  • Shown to increase one’s overall quality of life. [7]
  • Effective in the treatment of erectile dysfunction. [4][6][2]
  • Known to have anti-carcinogenic and antioxidant properties.  [5]
  • Helps regulate blood sugar levels in patients suffering from diabetes. [8]
  • Helps women with menopause symptoms. [1]

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What Is Ginseng?

The name “ginseng” itself is used to describe various herbs that have been used medicinally for many centuries. There are many types of ginseng but this article will cover Panax or Asian ginseng. Panax ginseng is considered one of the “true” ginsengs and is one of the more commonly used types. Each type of ginseng is thought to have unique healing properties. Panax ginseng in particular began to gain recognition for its “heating” properties meaning that it is thought to help improve circulation. However, recent studies have indicated that Panax ginseng has a wide array of positive effects far exceeding just that of improved circulation.

Ginseng Dosage Information

Dosages of Ginseng differ depending on the intended usage and methodology of the drug. Standardized extracts are usually taken at a rate of 100-200mgs daily. As a dried rood, 500-2000mgs are generally taken daily. When using ginseng as a mental booster generally 200-600mgs are taken of the extract or 500-2000mgs of the dried root. When being taken for erectile dysfunction a dosage of 1,000mgs of the dried root is taken 3 times daily. For those suffering from diabetes, doses of 200mgs daily of the extract have been shown to help regulate blood sugar levels. When taking ginseng to produce a synergetic effect the recommended dosage is 400mg of ginseng along with 360mg of ginkgo.

It is always best to start with the lower range of these dosages and move up if you experience no side effects but feel as though you aren’t getting the desired benefit.

How Does Ginseng Work?

The active ingredient in ginseng is ginenosides. Ginenosides are only found in ginseng and can be split into two categories, Rb1 and Rg1. The Rb1 group contains a steroid molecule which is known to have an assortment of positive effects including boosts in stamina and energy. The Rg1 group has been shown to protect against memory loss. Ginseng also interacts with the human body on a hormonal level. It has been shown to introduce artificial hormones to the body which can be used by the body in place of natural hormones. For example, ginseng is known to treat menopause symptoms in women by introducing an artificial hormone that can be used instead of estrogen for certain functions.

Safety and Side Effects of Ginseng

Even though ginseng is considered very safe, even in large amounts, at higher levels certain overdose symptoms are known to occur. Symptoms of mild overdose include dry mouth, excitation, fidgeting, irritability, insomnia, headache, blurred vision, increased body temperature/blood pressure, decreased appetite, increased sexual desire, dizziness, itching, and early morning diarrhea. Symptoms of severe overdose may include red face, seizures, convulsions, delirium, increased respiration, fever, cyanotic facial complexion, and bleeding.

However, it is possible to treat these overdose symptoms with 120 grams of gan cao. Persons whom experience these side effects are recommended to discontinue usage and seek any needed medical treatment.

Ginseng FAQ

Below are some of the most commonly asked questions about Ginseng. If you have a question that’s not on this list, send it to us at [email protected] and we will answer it for you.

Should I Use Ginseng?

If you are suffering from diabetes or experience erectile dysfunction then ginseng should be heavily considered for your nootropic regimen. It is very proven to enhance cognitive abilities alone so if that is the your only goal it might be best to skep over this nootropic; especially because of the list of possible side effects. However, if you are currently taking ginkgo this herb is known to have a strong synergetic effect. [3] These synergetic effects will help you improve cognitive abilities to a greater extent than just ginkgo alone. The bottom line is that if you don’t use ginkgo and don’t suffer from diabetes or erectile dysfunction it may be best to just leave this nootropic be.

What Are Some Notable Ginseng Studies?

A study referenced on conducted in 2005 published in the Journal of Psychopharmacy concluded that ginseng can improve cognitive abilities during prolonged periods of mental activity. In addition, a study conducted in 2000 which was also published in the Journal of Psycopharmacy concluded there was a strong synergetic effect between ginseng and ginkgo that leads to enhanced memory in healthy individuals. [2]

A second study referenced on suggested ginseng is effective in the treatment of erectile dysfunction. A 2002 study published in the Journal of Urology tested 45 men with erectile dysfunction. Those who took the Panax ginseng for eight weeks had improved much more than those who were given the placebo. An earlier study showed a 60% improvement rate among those taking ginseng and only a 30% improvement rate among those taking the placebo. [2]

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Buy Ginseng at Amazon

Cited Studies




4. Hong B; Ji YH; Hong JH; Nam KY; Ahn TY A double-blind crossover study evaluating the efficacy of korean red ginseng in patients with erectile dysfunction: a preliminary report. J Urol. 2002; 168(5):2070-3 (ISSN: )Department of Urology, University of Ulsan College of Medicine, Asan Medical Center, Seoul, Korea

5. Davydov M, Krikorian AD. (October 2000). “Eleutherococcus senticosus (Rupr. & Maxim.) Maxim. (Araliaceae) as an adaptogen: a closer look”. Journal of Ethnopharmacology 72 (3): 345–393. doi:10.1016/S0378-8741(00)00181-1.PMID 10996277

6. Murphy and Lee Ginseng, sex behavior, and nitric oxide, Ann N Y Acad Sci. 2002 May;962:372-7 PMID

7. Caso Marasco A, Vargas Ruiz R, Salas Villagomez A, Begona Infante C. (1996). “Double-blind study of a multivitamin complex supplemented with ginseng extract”. Drugs Exp Clin Res. 22 (6): 323–329.

8. Vladimir Vuksan, PhD; John L. Sievenpiper, BASc; Vernon Y. Y. Koo, MSc; Thomas Francis, PhD; Uljana Beljan-Zdravkovic, MD, MSc; Zheng Xu, MD; Edward Vidgen, BSc, 2000, Arch Intern Med, 160:1009-1013.