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Ginkgo Biloba's potential benefits for dementia

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Ginkgo Biloba 10,000mg

 

A recent study published in Neuropsychiatric Disease and Treatment shows that Ginkgo Biloba supplements may be effective in reducing common dementia symptoms.

Ginkgo and dementia study

 

The 24 week trial included 410 patients with mild to moderate dementia who were randomly split into two groups. Patients in the first group took a daily 240mg Ginkgo Biloba tablet, whilst patients in the second group took a daily placebo. None of the participants took dementia medications during the trial.

Throughout the trial, all patients completed questionnaires about the frequency and severity of the dementia symptoms they experienced. Each of their carers was also asked to record their distress levels during the trial.

Findings show potential benefits

 

Findings showed that patients supplementing with Ginkgo Biloba experienced small but statistically significant improvements in dementia symptoms when compared to the placebo group. These symptoms included irritability, sleep deprivation, depression, and motor behaviours.

The average level of distress experienced by caregivers also reduced for those in the Ginkgo Biloba group. Researchers suggest that this could be due to the symptom improvements experienced by patients in this group.

The future

 

Experts have welcomed these initial findings, but stress that further long term studies are now necessary to confirm Gingko’s potential as an effective treatment for dementia.

Please note, if you are considering taking a Ginkgo Biloba supplement, it can interact with certain blood-thinning medications such as warfarin. If you are currently taking any blood-thinning medications, or have any other health concerns, please consult with a qualified health care professional prior to supplementation.

 

Sources

N. Bachinskaya, R. Hoerr, and R. Ihl (2011) ‘Alleviating neuropsychiatric symptoms in dementia: The effects of Ginkgo biloba extract EGb 761®. Findings from a randomized controlled trial.’ Neuropsychiatry Disease and Treatment. 2011; 7: 209–215.