March #57 : Herb Of The Month - by Michael Onstott

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Woman on the Verge

The River Runs Through It

The Jelly Revolution

Let's Dance

Publisher's Letter


Catching Up With...

Call The Cops

Say What?

Big Bro

Chew the Stat


Trade Route To Riot

Bookmark This

Nana’s Natural Remedy

Underground Railroad


The Body Politic

High Crimes

Low Blows

Trip The Light Magnificent

Relatively Speaking

A Tricky Combination

Beat The Blues

Down But Not Out

Comfort Zone

Tendergroin District

The Matrix

Beyond Eradication

Herb Of The Month


3.29.89: Fine Toon

Most Popular Lessons

The HIV Life Cycle


Herpes Simplex Virus

Syphilis & Neurosyphilis

Treatments for Opportunistic Infections (OIs)

What is AIDS & HIV?

Hepatitis & HIV

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March 2000

Herb Of The Month

by Michael Onstott

Panax Ginseng

Whole or chopped root, liquid extract, capsules, granules, powder
Treats mental and physical fatigue, low sexual energy and stress
1 to 3 grams of root or powder (as tea), 1 to 4 capsules or tabs, 1 or 2 packets of granules (as tea), all daily; 20 to 30 drops of liquid extract, twice daily
Cost: $16–$110 (roots), $7–$40 (capsules, tabs or powder), $16–$40 (extract), $7–$25 (granules), all monthly
Asian herb shops or specialty markets, health food stores
Before taking, consult a qualified practitioner. Not recommended for pregnant women or people with high blood pressure or serious heart conditions.

Panax ginseng—a hairy root curiously resembling the human body—is so highly regarded in Asia as an energizer and aphrodisiac that it’s dubbed the King of Herbs. Not to be confused with Siberian ginseng, Panax ginseng is a potent tonic used to treat people with deficient chi—Chinese for vital life energy. But in contrast to the monotherapy common in the U.S., Asian herbalists usually balance the root’s stimulating effects by prescribing it together with soothing and restorative herbs. Many (non-HIV) studies have found that Panax ginseng can benefit people experiencing consistent weakness and fatigue or recovering from acute illness. Ginseng enhances physical and mental capacity by improving muscular absorption of oxygen and helping boost production of certain adrenal hormones. Dried roots (at least four years old) and extracts are often chosen for their greater potency, but granules can also make an invigorating tea. (In any form, the Korean variety is often recommended as the most uniform in quality.) But herbalists caution that Panax is generally inappropriate as a long-term daily tonic—especially without diagnosis and monitoring—because such use can cause side effects. So, once again, you can have too much of a good thing.

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