When I turned 37 I said to my mother, “Well ma, I guess I’m middle aged now.” She answered testily: “You’re not middle aged, I’m middle aged!”. However you define middle age, there is a time in our lives when we notice that we can’t recall things as easily as we used to. Brain fog, a senior moment, if you are past a certain age you know what I’m talking about. The old synapses are just not poppin’ the way they used to.
So what can we do about it? Struggle on impaired? There are actually some solutions readily available. Most holistic healers will tell you that illness generally can be attributed to decreases in circulation. Memory problems are one of the symptoms of aging which is defined in part by decreased circulation. That’s why old folks in cold weather tend to get cold hands and feet and have a hard time staying warm generally. So anything we can do to increase our circulation will help us to not only stay warm but also have a better memory and a whole laundry list of additional benefits.
There are many things we can do like exercise more and decrease the fat in our diet, but the focus of this article is on one little herb. By simply adding it to our daily regimen we can significantly help memory problems and all the other symptoms of decreased circulation.
Americans love the pill popping solution, so here it is. But this is not some expensive drug cooked up by big pharma; it is a simple, relatively inexpensive herb that is widely available without a prescription.
BTW, if we’re not vigilant, we will soon lose the privilege of buying herbs like these over the counter but that is a subject for another article, read more from here.
I first heard of Ginkgo when I was a kid growing up and there was this very unusual tree in our back yard in Oak Park, IL. It had unusual fan shaped leaves and the amazing thing about it was, in the fall it would drop all its leaves overnight, not gradually like other deciduous trees. I saw this happen again and again. One day it would be full of leaves and the next day in the fall it would be totally naked. Amazing! That was a ginkgo tree.
This is a very ancient tree whose origin is in China. It is the fan shaped leaf that contains the useful ingredients. It is one of the mostly widely used herbs globally and is one of the most widely proven in all kinds of good, double bind scientific tests. It has been proven to work. There is an extract that is made from the active ingredients that is combined with the leaf to create a reliable dosage.
As with all self-medication, it is wise to do your own research. My intent here is just to pique your interest. I was just reading today in Dr. Weil’s newsletter about new research into Ginkgo that shows that it may extend life and decrease anxiety.
My own personal experience is that it has been helpful in the memory department. The results, as with most herbs, are not instant. You need to make taking Ginkgo a regular part of your daily regimen, and usually you will notice a difference within a few weeks to a month. It is subtle. Memory function is something we take for granted until it doesn’t work, so it takes some measure of self-awareness to notice the difference. I did, and you will too if you try it.
It also helps sexual function; there are all kinds of benefits of increased circulation!
I also recall a time when my dentist, who is very nutritionally aware, asked me if I was taking Ginkgo. He was working on my mouth and noticed by my bleeding. I was impressed and amazed. He says that he usually advises his patients to stop taking Ginkgo for several weeks before any kind of operation. So that is something to keep in mind.
There is lots of information freely available on this highly useful herb, so check it out.