The link between ginkgo and hypertension is of lasting importance for researchers and people with hypertension. Some reliable studies show that Ginkgo biloba has certain cardioprotective properties. Ginkgo, which is sometimes spelled as Ginkgo , originates from China. The history of ginkgo, where ginkgo comes from, goes back at least 250 million years. It is considered a prehistoric tree and has always been part of traditional Chinese medicine. Today, however, the tree grows all over the world.
The cardioprotective properties of wood are due to its antioxidant, antithrombocytic and vasodilatory properties. Ginkgo in particular holds some promise for the prevention and treatment of coronary syndrome. It is clear that the treatment of hypertension is an important part of the prevention of cardiovascular disease (CVD).
Scientists suspect that patients suffering from high blood pressure may benefit from ginkgo to lower their blood pressure. For this purpose Ginkgo biloba was administered to high blood pressure rats in a rat study. As a result, both systolic and diastolic blood pressure have been significantly reduced. The systolic blood pressure was 11-21% lower and the diastolic blood pressure was 7-10% lower.
Perhaps the most surprising finding of the study is that rats with normal blood pressure, also called normotensive, do not change their blood pressure at all. Moreover, the reduction of hypertension with ginkgo seems to occur in the early stages of hypertension.
Ginkgo and hypertension in humans
If Ginkgo biloba rats would give these promising results, the natural question for many would be what to expect from humans. Our conclusion is that the word about the mentioned benefits of ginkgo in humans is currently largely unscientific and could be a product of traditional medicine folklore.
The benefits of ginkgo and hypertension in humans are not so convincing, at least not according to the results of the studies we have seen. It may also be the result of a limited number of studies investigating the effect of Ginkgo biloba on blood pressure when used in humans.
A six-week study of a group of young people with normal blood pressure showed no change in blood pressure. It appears to be consistent with a laboratory study in rats. Another ginkgo study, conducted over a period of 3 months in slightly older people in the pre-hypertension phase, showed a reduction in systolic (6%) and diastolic (21%) blood pressure.
Even with such results, the researchers could not say with certainty that ginkgo has a beneficial effect on hypertension in humans. They want the treatment period and the groups concerned by the investigation to be extended. They say the search should be more extensive and more random.
The belief that there is a link between ginkgo and hypertension in the human body may also be based on the theoretical understanding that terpenoids, such as those in ginkgo’s, have a positive influence on blood flow by dilating blood vessels and improving their ability to reduce platelet adhesion. That’s what the University of Maryland Medical School says. Other effective herbal blood pressure meters, such as celery, have the same vasodilating effect.
Does ginkgo cause hypertension or hypotension?
Contrary to some opinions, the studies mentioned here, carried out on both rats and humans, do not report that ginkgo causes high blood pressure or lowers normal blood pressure.
However, we have found information that warns about the possible negative effects of ginkgo on blood pressure. In almost all cases studied we could not find reliable scientific evidence to explain why ginkgo can cause hypertension or hypotension.
Therefore, we now consider insinuations that ginkgo causes hypertension or hypotension as mere explanations that have not yet been confirmed by some published scientific studies.
Interaction of ginkgo with antihypertensives
Although there is no convincing scientific opinion on the effect of ginkgo on human blood pressure, scientific studies can confirm that ginkgo interacts not only with drugs used to treat hypertension, but also with virtually all other drugs. This also applies to the various herbs used for the treatment of all kinds of diseases, including hypertension.
For example, the Mayo Clinic claims that ginkgo can lower blood sugar levels. This has consequences for those who take diabetes or medication to lower their blood sugar levels. The same goes for people taking medications that increase the risk of bleeding, such as aspirin.
In short, Ginkgo treats a wide range of diseases and can therefore interact with a virtually unlimited number of medications. We recommend that you seek the detailed advice of a specialist when using certain medications and if you intend to use Ginkgo.
Some known side effects of Ginkgo
- Haemorrhages (most alarming side effect)
- Sleepiness and silence
- Hypoglycaemia (low blood sugar)
- Women who are pregnant or trying to become pregnant should be treated with care.
- A strong heartbeat
- Ask for it.
- Risk of liver and thyroid cancer (at least in animals).
- Can cause seizures.
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