Ginkgo herb supplement could prevent strokes
The herbal remedy Ginkgo could help stop the body from suffering strokes, a new study has shown.
The popular supplement – full name Ginkgo Biloba – has long been taken by people as an aid to improve memory in the brain as it increases blood flow to the area. At least 100,000 people in the UK take the supplement regularly.
Now scientists have discovered that Ginkgo supplements reduce the amount of damage caused in the brain, after tests were carried out on mice. The mice received daily doses of the herbal supplement for a week before scientists induced strokes in the animals. The group who were given a daily dose of Ginkgo had 50.9% less neurological dysfunction.
The supplement also seemed to reduce the level of paralysis and weakness in limbs.
Lead researcher Dr Sylvain Dore, from John Hopkins Institutions in Baltimore, confirmed the conclusions saying: ‘Our results suggest that some element or elements in Ginkgo actually protect brain cells during stroke.’
He added: ‘If further work confirms what we’ve seen, we could theoretically recommend a daily regimen of Ginkgo to people at high risk of stroke as a preventive measure against brain damage.’
Dr Dore admitted: ‘It’s still a large leap from rodent brains to human brains but these results strongly suggest that further research into the protective effects of Ginkgo is warranted.’