Shop | Membership | Articles | International

Specials | Info | Site Map | Links | View Basket

Whole Body Health
AIM BarleyLife
AIM BarleyLife Xtra
AIM Just Carrots
AIM RediBeets
AIM Leaf Greens
AIM Garden Trio
AIM Fit n Fiber
AIM Cell Wellness Restorer
AIM Peak Endurance USA
AIM ProPeas
AIM Veggie D
Digestive Health
AIM Cascara Sagrada
AIM Fibre Balance
AIM FloraFood
AIM Herbal Fiberblend
AIM Herbal Release
AIM Para90
AIM PrepZymes
Cardio Health
AIM Cell Sparc 360
AIM Bear Paw Garlic USA
AIM Kyolic Garlic CAD
Immuno Health
AIM Herbal Release
AIM Proancynol
Neuro Health
AIM Composure
AIM GinkgoSense
Body Frame Health
AIM Frame Essentials
Women's Health
AIM RevitaFem
AIM Renewed Balance USA
Men's Health
AIM ReAssure
AIM GinkgoSense
Lifestyle Health
AIM GlucoChrom
AIM Cell Wellness Restorer
Senior's Health
AIM ReAssure
AIM GinkgoSense
AIM PrepZymes

  • Home  > Articles on Health  > Ginkgo Biloba

    Ginkgo Biloba

    Ginkgo Biloba - A Literature Review

    The leaf of the ginkgo biloba tree has a long history in "folk medicine." What many do not know is that it is also one of the best-researched herbs there is. Research began back in the 1950s, and continues to this day. Following is a brief summary of some of the research done in the 1990s.

    A 1991 double-blind, placebo-controlled study looked at how ginkgo biloba extract (GBE) affects mild to moderate memory impairment in elderly outpatients (Current Medical Research and Opinion 12, no. 6 (1991): 350-5). In this six-month study, 31 patients over the age of 50 received 40 mg of GBE or a placebo three times a day. The abstract notes that statistical analysis of the data suggests that GBE has a beneficial effect on cognitive function.

    Perhaps one of the first 1990s studies to gain widespread attention was that done on "ginkgo biloba for cerebral insufficiency," by Jos Kleijnen and Paul Knipschild, and published in the British Journal of Clinical Pharmacology (October 1992). This study was actually a critical review of previous studies and intended to establish whether there is evidence of GBE’s usefulness in cerebral insufficiency.

    Cerebral insufficiency

    Cerebral insufficiency is a general term for a collection of symptoms that include difficulties in concentration and memory, absent-mindedness, confusion, lack of energy, tiredness, depressive mood, anxiety, dizziness, tinnitus, and headache. These symptoms have been associated with impaired cerebral (brain) circulation and are sometimes thought to be early signs of dementia.

    The authors determined that at that time there were eight well-performed trials out of a total of 40, and, in their abstract, state, "Positive results have been reported for ginkgo biloba extracts in the treatment of cerebral insufficiency. The clinical evidence is similar to that of a registered product that is prescribed for the same indication. However, further studies should be conducted for a more detailed assessment of the efficacy."

    A 1994 study (Phytomedicine 1, 9-16) shows that regular administration of GBE has a positive influence on subjects with cerebral insufficiency. The study focused on "long-term and short-term memory, concentration power, maximum stress, mental flexibility, family problems, and general satisfaction of the patient with his or her life." None of the 90 subjects exhibited any pseudodementias (defined as dementia symptoms due to depression), nor were they using any substances that affected blood vessels. Positive effects were noted after six weeks of use.

    Another 1994 study (Human Psychopharmacology 9, 215-22) reports on the use of GBE for senile dementia of the Alzheimer’s type. A review of this study in HerbalGram magazine (34, Summer 1995) says that GBE is "one of the clinician’s most useful tools for slowing down cognitive decline in the elderly."

    In a double-blind study on memory impairment in the elderly (Clin Ther 15, no. 3 (May-June 1993): 549-58), 18 men and women with a mean age of 69.3 received a placebo or 320 mg of GBE or 600 mg of GBE one hour before performing tests that measured the speed of information processing. After taking GBE, results indicated an improvement in the speed of information processing.

    A 1995 report in the Psychopharmacol Bulletin (31, no. 1 (1995): 147-58) reports on using GBE in dementia. It notes that GBE is among the most popular over-the-counter medicines in Europe, that the European medical community has recognized it "as an effective compound in the treatment of cerebral insufficiency," and that it has earned the “approval of the German Federal Health Agency for use in the treatment of dementia.”

    In October 1997 came the "groundbreaking" study on GBE—groundbreaking not because of new information but because it was published in the prestigious and mainstream Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA). JAMA reported that GBE may be beneficial in the treatment of Alzheimer’s disease.

    This was followed up by a 1998 meta-analysis (an analysis of all studies available on a subject) that attempted to identify all English and non-English-language research in which GBE was given to subjects with dementia or cognitive impairment. In the abstract to this study, the authors note that "...there is a small but significant effect of three- to six-month treatment with 120 to 240 mg of G. biloba extract on objective measures of cognitive function in Alzheimer’s disease." (Archives of Neurology 55, no. 11 (November 1998 ): 1409-15.)

    Also in 1998, Psychopharmacol Bulletin (34, no. 3, 391-7) released a study on the pharmacological effects of ginkgo biloba on the brains of dementia patients in comparison with tacrine, a drug approved for use in Alzheimer’s disease. Previous studies indicated that both GBE and tacrine are "cognitive activators." The study reported here attempted to determine whether these two substances have any noticeable pharmacological effects on elderly subjects diagnosed with possible or probable Alzheimer’s disease.

    Data from 18 subjects at an average age of 67 years with light to moderate dementia were analyzed, and each subject was randomly administered either 40 mg of tacrine or 240 mg of GBE in two separate sessions. The results indicate that both GBE and, to a lesser degree, tacrine induce pharmacological effects similar to those previously established in healthy, young subjects.

    Several studies were published in 1999, adding to ginkgo’s reputation. The abstract on a broad overview of the current data on ginkgo (Ann Pharm Fr, 57, Suppl 1 (July 1999): 1S8-88) noted that

    "Numerous well-controlled clinical studies, realized in Europe and in USA, have revealed that EGb 761 [a type of ginkgo extract] is an effective therapy for a wide variety of disturbances of cerebral function, ranging from cerebral impairment of ischemic vascular origins (i.e., multi-infarct dementia), early cognitive decline to mild-to-moderate cases of the more severe types of senile dementias (including Alzheimer’s disease) or mixed origins (i.e., psychoorganic origin).

    "Improvement of signs and symptoms have been demonstrated for cognitive functions, particularly for memory loss, attention, alertness, vigilance, arousal, and mental fluidity. Some clinical studies have showed that EGb 761 treatment may improve the capacity of geriatric patients to cope with the stressful demands of daily life..."

    "...The future of EGb 761 is undoubtedly in the promise in slowing the progression of Alzheimer’s disease. Indeed, two recent American clinical studies have shown the efficacy and safety of EGb 761 in patients with mild to severe Alzheimer’s disease and multi-infarct dementia. In clinical terms, progression of symptoms was delayed by approximately six months."

    In another 1999 paper, published in the Journal of Pharmacy and Pharmacology (May 1999), the authors briefly review past studies, and then go on to detail their own. When evaluating past studies, they note that “ … in an assessment meta-analysis of 40 clinical studies, it was reported that ginkgo was able to improve the 12 different symptoms comprising ‘cerebral insufficiency,’ all of which are manifest in the elderly. These were supported in a second major study. … However, in both instances, the evidence was largely based on the results of self-assessment questionnaires."

    Finally, in a study published in Phytother Res (13, no. 5 (August 1999): 408-15), ginkgo, memory, and psychomotor performance were evaluated, using different amounts of ginkgo. The authors note that the results confirm GBE’s effects on aspects of cognition, that a 120 mg per day serving produces the most evident effects, and that the cognitive-enhancing effects of GBE are more likely to be apparent in individuals aged 50-59 years.

    Cell Food: For our cells to be healthy, they must have pure, whole, natural, fresh foods. The best foods are raw foods, as their elements remain intact as they were created by nature. Raw foods are not modified by cooking or processes that subtract from the natural substances found in them. If we eat well, we do much toward achieving and maintaining health.

    This article is reproduced from Partner's Magazine with the permission of AIM International

    AIM Ginkgo Sense - a high quality ginkgo biloba supplement
    Combines ginkgo biloba with the essential fatty acid DHA, the herb bilberry, and the carotenoids lutien and zeaxanthin.
    Size: 30 capsules
    Code: 2733-USD
    Retail: USD$ 33.00
    Add to cart to see special price


If you have any questions, please send an email to

Prices and offers are subject to change without notice. This page contains copyrighted materials and/or trademarks of AIM International, Inc. and is reprinted with permission.

All articles and information on this website are for educational purposes only. They are not to be regarded or relied upon as medical advice. The articles and information have not been evaluated by the FDA. Consult your health practitioner if you have health problems.

AIM products are not intended to diagnose, cure, treat, mitigate, or prevent a disease or illness. Results may vary per person.