Q: Dear Dr. Mao,
I am hearing a lot about ginkgo’s ability to treat Alzheimer’s. How effective is it really?
A: A recent study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association reported the results of a yearlong, double-blind trial of ginkgo in over 300 people with Alzheimer’s or non-Alzheimer’s dementia. Participants were given either 40 mg of the ginkgo extract or a placebo 3 times daily. The results showed that 27% of the treated group showed significant improvement on an overall rating scale that evaluates the severity of Alzheimer’s disease, compared to only 14% in the placebo group. Also, 40% of those given placebo worsened over the course of the study, whereas only 19% of the treated participants worsened.
The study’s authors interpret these statistics to mean that in about 20% of cases, ginkgo may slow the development of Alzheimer’s disease by 6 months to 1 year. These results do not make ginkgo out to be a miracle cure, but they do confirm that it is a useful treatment for dementia.
To help enhance your memory you may try the brain-nourishing herbal supplement “Super Clarity” by Traditions of Tao. Of course, discuss with your physician before beginning any new health regime.