Ginseng root is a powerful herb. You may have taken it to fight off a cold, increase your energy levels, or manage stress. But it can do much more, especially for men’s sexual health. Ginseng might not be the first herb you might think of turning to for sexual issues, but it might be among the most potent.
It can be difficult to talk about sexual health problems and fertility. You might feel embarrassed or ashamed. There’s no need. It’s estimated that around 52% of men deal with erectile dysfunction at some point in their lives. And it’s important to address the problem, since it may indicate another health concern, like heart disease, chronic stress, or depression, and it can take a toll on your relationship.
The smart move is to consult a trusted health professional — and if you want, add an herbal remedy to your routine.
This article reveals 5 ways ginseng root can improve men’s sexual health from both a Western and Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) point of view. As a bonus, there are additional herbal remedies that also might improve your sex life.
What is Ginseng Root?
Ginseng comes from the root of the ginseng plant. It has been used for many centuries for medicinal purposes, including in TCM. Ginseng has a sweet and slightly bitter taste. The genus of the plant, Panax, means all healing. It’s an apt description of this multipurpose herb.
Senior TCM Physician Brandon Yew from Real Health Medical clinic in Singapore describes the best uses for the three types of ginseng. Each type of ginseng has different purposes and is suitable for different body compositions and health concerns. Some people have excess heat in the body or a yin (body fluids and cooling energy) deficiency. Others have a yang deficiency, i.e. not enough warming energy in the body. Consult a TCM practitioner who can diagnose your personal body constitution.
Korean ginseng is the warmest of the three, due to its processing methods. In TCM, this means that it is the most stimulating option. Physician Yew recommends this option for those who are yang-deficient and yin-excess, but not for those with yin-deficient and yang-excess body constitutions.
Chinese ginseng is also stimulating, but milder than Korean ginseng. Again, Physician Yew does not advise ginseng for those of yin-deficient and yang-excess body constitutions. It is instead suitable for those of yang-deficient and yin-excess body constitutions.
American ginseng comes from a different plant, the Panax quinquefolius plant. Unlike its Asian counterparts, American ginseng is cooling in nature, hence it is suitable for those of yin-deficient and yang-excess body constitution. Physician Yew does not recommend it for those with yang-deficient and yin-excess body constitution.
How to Take Ginseng Root
Ginseng comes in many forms including capsule, powder, and chews. Physician Yew strongly recommends consulting a TCM physician for guidance on how much ginseng to take as there is no one universal dose.
You can take ginseng in a number of ways. One popular option is to drink it as tea. You can either slice ginseng root and steep it in water, or use a product in convenient teabag form. If you’re looking for something even more soothing you can make a soup with ginseng.
Benefits of Ginseng Root
Ginseng has many benefits. In TCM, ginseng is prescribed to tonify qi, which helps to:
- Increase energy levels to alleviate fatigue
- Strengthen lungs to relieve cough and breathlessness
- Improve digestion and alleviate nausea and vomiting
Improves sexual performance
Sex can bring couples closer together, strengthen your bond and keep the relationship fun. But if sexual performance issues like sexual stamina are keeping you from pleasuring your partner, it can put undue stress on your relationship.
Ginseng root can help improve sexual performance.
While the exact reasons for the effects of ginseng root are unknown, ginseng is used to improve circulation, and better circulation and cardiovascular health mean better blood flow to the penis. As a result, you can maintain an erection longer. In addition, the protective effects of ginseng may help keep the tissues of the penis in better working order. Ginseng also works great as a stress relief, which can leave you feeling more relaxed.
If you’re looking for an aphrodisiac, forget oysters! If you find that you are rarely “in the mood” for sex, ginseng can help increase your desire. Ginseng is a well-known aphrodisiac and has been used for thousands of years to boost sexual desire.
You can also take cordyceps alongside ginseng. Cordyceps is thought to help the production of ATP, which our cells use for energy. Many athletes take cordyceps to improve their performance during competition, so why not try it for sexual performance?
Reduces erectile dysfunction
There are many underlying causes for erectile dysfunction (ED). Health issues like heart disease, high cholesterol, diabetes, and mental health disturbances can contribute to erectile dysfunction.
In TCM, imbalances in the body can lead to a reduced flow of qi, or vital energy and life force. Studies have shown the positive effects of ginseng on vital energy and erectile dysfunction. Participants in one study who took ginseng had higher levels of testosterone.
Increases sperm motility
If you and your partner are trying to conceive, having healthy, active sperm is essential. Ginseng shows promise in helping overcome infertility: One study showed that ginseng helped with sperm motility, or the ability to move towards an egg.
Prevents premature ejaculation
This might be a problem you thought only happened during puberty, but many men continue to experience premature ejaculation throughout their lives. Ginseng can help by prolonging the time it takes to ejaculate.
If you’re experiencing problems with sexual arousal, performance, or fertility, work with both your doctor and TCM physician to address any underlying health concerns and avoid potential undesirable drug-herb interaction. Essentially, using ginseng as a part of your daily routine can have a positive effect on your overall health, and your relationships. Save this article and bring it with you to your next medical appointment to see if your healthcare provider recommends using ginseng root.
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- Evidence-based complementary and alternative medicine. 2019. Brain Cortical and Hippocampal Dopamine: A New Mechanistic Approach for Eurycoma longifolia Well-Known Aphrodisiac Activity and Its Chemical Characterization. [Accessed 30 December 2021]
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