Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Does Ginkgo Protect Against Stroke?

news you may not know

Yeah - Older's Better...

Medical advances evolve at a dizzying pace these days. Today's medical miracle quickly becomes yesterday's outdated protocol. But, sometimes, the old reliable treatments are still the best. That being the case, it doesn't get much better than ginkgo biloba.

It's true - ginkgo biloba trees have been around for 270 million years. Maybe that's why they're so popular in the alternative health field, with ginkgo outselling all but four other medicinal herbs.

Now, new research shows ginkgo may also play a key role in the treatment and prevention of stroke. Researchers from Johns Hopkins University studied the impact of ginkgo on mice that had suffered strokes. Those mice given the ginkgo extract within five minutes following the stroke had a 60 percent reduction in neurological damage. Even mice that were not treated with ginkgo until four and one-half hours following the stroke had one-third less damage.

"It's still a large leap from rodent brains to human brains but these results strongly suggest that further research into the protective effects of ginkgo is warranted," says lead researcher Sylvain Doré, Ph.D., an associate professor in the Department of Anesthesiology and Critical Care Medicine. "If further work confirms what we've seen, we could theoretically recommend a daily regimen of ginkgo to people at high risk of stroke as a preventive measure against brain damage."

So, keep your eyes open. The next new thing may be a 270 million year old newcomer.

To read more about the study, see this from Reuters. To read more about ginkgo biloba, see this from the Mayo Clinic.


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