Latin: Gingko biloba
Parts Used: Leaves primarily, nuts
Taste/Energetics: Sweet, sour, bitter, neutral
Properties: Nootropic, anti-inflammatory, analgesic, circulatory stimulant, hypotensive, anxiolytic
Actions: Gingko is one of those “miracle herbs” that have become very popular as an anti-aging and memory enhancing supplement but really this ancient plant has a wide variety of uses. Gingko is not only an ancient tree species, it also tends to live for many hundreds- if not thousands- of years. Besides improving cognitive abilities such as improved memory and focus, gingko is also useful for reducing the potential for dementia and Alzheimers. It also improves blood circulation, is mildly analgesic, calming, and hypotensive. There is some evidence that it improves vision and decreases the potential of macular degeneration and optical neuropathy.
Gingko is a tree that has become popular as an ornamental and is grown commonly in cities. I think of this plant for those who feel cloudy, dull, confused, scattered and aging too quickly. It tones and sharpens people up in a gentle way and is nicely preventative of aging related health problems.
Dosage: Per Thomas Easley (see his book The Modern Herbal Dispensatory) , Gingko is not really effective unless it is concentrated. That means its best to take this in capsules containing 100-250 mg of a 50:1 standardized extract.
Contraindications: Avoid with blood thinners.