Traditionally, American Indians as a general tonic and natural restorative consumed the wild root of American ginseng. It was often given to their weak and wounded warriors to stimulate healing..
Chemistry and Pharmacology
The active ingredients of ginseng are saponins in this case, ginsenosides. As with Chinese ginseng, there is an array of actions best described as adaptogenic. A term indicating a non-specific increase in resistance to stress or other adverse conditions.. American ginseng has a predomination of Rb-1 ginsenosides, which accounts for its sedative effect on the central nervous system.
Ginsenosides acts on the adrenal glands via the hypothalamus and pituitary glands. The hormones produced play a significant role in the adaptive ability of the body.
Rb-1 ginsenosides have
anti-fatigue properties and has been used in the past for weakness and convalescence. Rb-1 ginsenosides are also useful in individuals with poor immunity and chronic disease. Rb-1 ginsenosides sedative effect is in contrast to the arousing and stimulating effect of Chinese or Korean ginseng that contains a high concentration
Ginseng is advantageous to athletes by increasing endurance and in recovering from the prolonged stress of exercise. Ginseng improves the metabolism of lipids and glucose, and provides free radical quenching in the brain. American ginseng consumption offers relaxation in addition to the above-mentioned effects.