Wild ginseng is known to provide many health benefits. It boosts immunity, lowers disease risk, improves blood sugar, boosts energy and mood, and more. However, the herbs and supplements on the market are highly unregulated. So how do you know if the ginseng you are purchasing is high quality?
This article will serve as a ginseng buying guide. It will tell you what to look for when you purchase ginseng.
What Type of Ginseng Should I Buy?
There are two main types of ginseng – Asian or Korean ginseng (Panax ginseng) and Wild American ginseng. They differ in the amount of ginsenosides (active ingredients) they contain. However, they both provide similar benefits.
Some say Asian ginseng is more energizing. Others say the two taste different. However, these characteristics are up for debate.
Ginseng can be further classified as fresh, white, or red. Fresh ginseng is harvested at the four-year mark or earlier. White ginseng is harvested between 4 and 5 years. Red ginseng is harvested after 6 years.
Red ginseng is more biologically active than other types of ginseng. Its time on the earth allows it to become more powerful. It also has a richer taste and fewer side effects than dried white ginseng and fresh ginseng.
What Form of Ginseng Should I Buy?
Ginseng comes in various forms. Examples include:
- Ginseng extract
- Ginseng powder
- Ginseng capsules
- Ginseng root
- Ginseng slices
Extracts, powders, and capsules are easy to take, and they give you a better idea of the dose you are consuming. But some people prefer to make meals and beverages with ginseng root and ginseng slices. They give buyers more control over the ingredients they are consuming.
What Dosage Should I Take?
There is no standard dosage for ginseng. However, experts recommend a dosage of 200 mg a day. Most studies have shown beneficial effects at daily doses of 200 to 400 mg. Dry root doses are .5 to 2 grams a day.
Most consumers want products that give them the most bang for their buck. But if you’ve never used ginseng before, it can be difficult to do comparison shopping.
Quality ginseng usually goes for $15 to $20 for a one-month supply of 200 mg per day doses. Field-grown dry ginseng sells for $10-$25 per pound.
Buy from the Right Companies
Purchase ginseng products from companies you trust. Here are some factors that will tell you if a company is reputable.
- Reputation: A trustworthy company will have good customer reviews. It will have been in business for a long time. It will back up its claims with studies published by established medical databases.
- Look for Labels: Labels like US Pharmacopeia, NSF International, Underwriters Laboratory, or Consumer Lab tell you that the product contains the ingredients listed on the bottle and is not made with harmful components.
- Beware of Product Claims: Beware of companies that sell products that claim to cure a disease or advertise money-back guarantees. Manufacturers that sound too good to be true usually are.
- Look out for supplements made outside of the U.S. They are often unregulated and may contain toxic ingredients.
Look Out for Defects
If you are buying whole ginseng, you may see signs of defects that tell you not to eat it. These include:
- A ring of red dots around its circumference
- Dark green or black patches
- A nasty, sour, or bitter taste
Ginseng plants are beneficial herbs that contain antioxidants. But it’s essential to buy a product you can trust. This ginseng buying guide will help you find reliable companies that make affordable, potent, convenient products. Good luck finding the ones that are most beneficial to your health, including your immune function, blood pressure levels, and more.
To learn more, read our blog article about selecting the best ginseng supplement.