Is Ginkgo Biloba right for you? Ginkgo is commonly considered a brain booster for better memory. Does evidence support Ginkgo use? Are there any other uses? Before using Ginkgo Biloba, see what research indicates about this centuries-old traditional medicine remedy.
About Ginkgo Biloba
Ginkgo Biloba is a popular supplement and active ingredient in skincare products. It is a natural ingredient made from the fan-shaped leaves of the Ginkgo Biloba tree. It is also known as ginkgo, fossil tree, maidenhair tree, Japanese silver apricot, baiguo, and yinhsing.
Ginkgo Biloba is used as a natural remedy used in alternative medicine. It is best known for improving memory. There are also skin and hair benefits to topical ginkgo application. Ginkgo Biloba is available in tea, in powder form, and in supplement capsules.
Ginkgo Biloba for Skin
Ginkgo Biloba promotes better blood flow to the skin. Better blood flow provides the skin with the nutrients it requires for skin rejuvenation processes such as building collagen, cell restoration, and healing wounds.
Ginkgo Biloba contains high amounts of antioxidants which can also reduce skin discoloration.
Ginkgo Biloba For Hair Regrowth
Gingko Biloba does not directly regrow hair. But it can support hair follicle health.
Ginkgo Biloba increases blood flow to the scalp. This can enhance or even restore hair growth. Better blood flow allows for the necessary nutrients and oxygen to reach the hair follicle. This keeps hair actively growing. If a follicle is just dormant, not dead, increased blood flow can restart the hair production process.
Common Ginkgo Biloba Uses
Ginkgo contains two potentially helpful components. These are flavonoids and terpenoids.
- Flavonoids are antioxidants
- Terpenoids improve circulation by dilating blood vessels and reducing the “stickiness” of platelets.
Ginkgo Biloba Research
While safe in moderation for generally healthy younger people, research doesn’t support it enhances memory or helps other health matters. Most people are interested in taking Gingko Biloba for two main problems, memory and blood circulation.
While Ginkgo Biloba is commonly used for mental clarity or to bolster medical conditions with cognitive decline, little in the way of supporting research exists for Ginkgo supporting cognition. Some studies show mild improvement in memory. Other studies show conflicting evidence.
The Ginkgo Evaluation of Memory Study (funded by the National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health) looked at Ginkgo and cognitive decline in more than 3,000 older adults. The research study said that Ginkgo does not prevent dementia or cognitive decline, and it doesn’t prevent Alzheimer’s-related dementia from getting worse.
Ginkgo Biloba has been used for improved blood circulation, including for a medical condition called claudication. Claudication is pain caused by too little blood flow.
Research indicates that while offering some benefit, there are now better remedies than Gingko Biloba for Claudication.
Takeaway on Ginkgo Biloba
Talk to Your Doctor About if Ginkgo Biloba is right for you
Discuss with your healthcare provider to see if Ginkgo Biloba could be helpful for you.
As a supplement or powder, Ginkgo Biloba has not been FDA reviewed for safety or efficacy.
Gingko as a topical ingredient may support skin rejuvenation
- Ginkgo. National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health. https://nccih.nih.gov/health/ginkgo/ataglance.htm.
- Ginkgo biloba. Micromedex 2.0 Healthcare Series. http://www.micromedexsolutions.com.
- Ginkgo. Natural Medicines. https://naturalmedicines.therapeuticresearch.com/
- Nicolai SP, et al. Ginkgo biloba for intermittent claudication. Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews.