Ginseng Leaves

franc(z5IND)February 27, 2005

Im wondering if American Ginseng has some of the same properties as the roots maybe just in smaller amounts.

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Herbalynn(Oregon, 7-8)

I have no personal experience with it, but in a websearch, there is alot of information. Maybe try re-doing the search with the Latin name and leaves. Heres the results of Ginseng leaves:

Here is a link that might be useful: google

    Bookmark   March 1, 2005 at 12:37PM
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An old trick for getting good ginseng was to count the scabs
i.e.every year the perennial leaves die back and leave a small stump or scab. Seven scabs or more was good ginseng (seven years old). You asked about American ginseng (Panax quinquefolium or Panax trifolium) I'm hoping the Chinese reference to Panax schinseng help you here.
They consider the leaves to be gentle and cooling while the root is warming to hot. The adjectives are similar to physical effects of the herb.The Chinese import american ginseng ROOT as a calming cooling herb. I don't think they import the leaves of the American ginsing.
They would not use the leaves and root at the same time because of the differing properties. They didn't go out and harvest just the leaves.

    Bookmark   March 1, 2005 at 2:58PM
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Thanks for the Info. it seems the leaves do have some value.
Thanks,Vee about 20 years agoI dug up a wild ginseng root that was over 45yrs old.The bud scars started from the main root which wasn't really that large and went for about 25 yrs until a new root formed still married to the old root by the bud scars.The bud scars kind of told a story/history of the forest it was dug in.The whole root probably weighted less than 4oz.

    Bookmark   March 1, 2005 at 3:51PM
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I know you can eat Indian Ginseng leaves...I do every day fresh of the plant.

This has helped me to sleep a lot better after a car accident...and for a few other problems.

Have a look at this web page for info on Indian Ginseng.

    Bookmark   March 5, 2005 at 2:56PM
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lundpix(Southern Cal)

Hi Franc,
Without going into specifics, the molecules of interest in Ginseng species are the ginsenosides. They are mainly of two types, differing upon which carbon has attached sugars. They are denoted as PPD or PPT types. (Protopanaxadiol, sugars at carbon 3 and 20, or protopanaxatriol, sugars at carbons 6 and 20.)

Current research shows the presence of interesting ginsenosides in the leaves and the berries of Panax quinquefolia, the American Ginseng. Preliminary work with the berries indicates an effect on blood sugar. It is possible, but not proven, that the use of the berries may aid in control of blood sugar.

This effect is probably of a mild nature and even if proven, may just moderate blood sugar that is a little high, as opposed to treating a disease like diabetes. I know of one ginseng growing company in Wisconsin that has introduced a dried berry product. Perhaps you live in the right part of the world to harvest your own.

Some of the variability in human trials of the effects of ginseng may be due to the work of the bifidophilus bacteria in our gut that removes the attached sugar molecules. With these sugars removed, absorption is facilitated. Population samples using ginseng in trials to date have not established the presence of these helpful bacteria in the test subjects. As a result, absorption, and therefore, effects, have varied.

For personal use, it might be wise to consider the population of bifidophilus at home in your gut before you send in the ginseng. You may find the effect to be noticably different.


    Bookmark   June 7, 2005 at 3:42AM
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" Perhaps you live in the right part of the world to harvest your own.'

That's become increasingly unlikely.

    Bookmark   June 7, 2005 at 9:37AM
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Thanks for that info. I did not know the variable of bifidophilus in ginseng absorption. In your knowledge about Chinese herbs, do you know about Gynostemma? I've heard that the leaves have ginseng-like properties, but it is a much faster grower, a vine. In light of Panax's slow growth, this might be a better option for leaf teas. Any insight?

    Bookmark   June 14, 2005 at 9:43PM
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" Perhaps you live in the right part of the world to harvest your own.'

Yes I live in a area where it can be harvested and its actually pretty common,to the trained eye.The average person would have difficulty finding it even if they were standing in the middle of a patch unless the berries were present.Actually from the warnings Ive read Ginseng should be avoided if you have high blood pressure.Ive personally eaten pounds of the stuff and other than increased endurance and a general more healthy feeling theres been no other affects that Ive noticed.

    Bookmark   June 19, 2005 at 12:19AM
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How can you tell Ginseng from Virginia Creeper?

    Bookmark   July 2, 2005 at 3:37AM
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lundpix(Southern Cal)

Hi to Phylla,
Gynostemma pentaphyllum contains similar structures to the ginsenosides. They are technically called gypenosides, I believe. We can get a few varieties of herbal teas in bags in our Chinatown here in LA. The one from Japan is the one that tastes best. I think the biological effect is pretty much the same.

If I remember correctly, the number of gypenosides identified is fairly high, maybe around 80. Content in leaves is significant, so the leaves are harvested for tea. It is sometimes called seven leaf ginseng.

It is reported that Chinese people will drink it before going to work and at the end of work as well. I have tried it many times. I find it to have a gentle lift, not unlike chewing on a ginseng root piece. Of course, the taste is a little better as a tea. Usually priced moderately, you will find it in asian markets. Online, it might be a little higher. I think it is also available in powder or extract form, sometimes for a high price.

I am not sure of heavy metal content, but I don't expect it to be high. Also the tea form is pretty cheap, so switching species is not likely.

Two papers were published on it last year in Journal of Natural Products. So it is still being investigated. I see quite a few in Chinese as well. I do not know the growing conditions for it, but I think it grows in warmer climates than does the Panax ginseng because it is sometimes called southern ginseng.

I also don't know the pattern of gypenoside content in terms of age of the plant. So I don't know if you would need to harvest it from a mature plant or a young one. I do see one paper noting a peak in gypenosides in July.

Another paper notes the high Germanium content. This is also noted for Panax ginseng and Ganoderma lucidum. Herbalists usually believe that this has a positive effect on the available oxygen in the tissues. They sometimes report increased mental clarity from Germanium ingestion. Of course, it is important to note that inorganic Germanium is toxic. We must be sure to use only plant based Germanium in supplementation.


    Bookmark   July 2, 2005 at 12:50PM
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Thanks much for the Gynostemma info, lundpix. I've had commercial tea from a Chinese herb shop. I now have two plants growing here in NC, bought from a gentleman in the mountains who has been growing Chinese herbs here for a long time. It's a fast-growing vine, easy to grow, and, as said, holds a lot of promise as a ginseng alternative.

    Bookmark   July 5, 2005 at 8:27PM
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