Maybe you should try some ginseng this flu season

The government has issued a warning about this year’s flu season, indicating it will be serious and potentially deadly for many people. Fifteen children have died already, and the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) feel more deaths are inevitable due to the fact the current influenza vaccine offers little to no protection against the current strain. SEE ALSO: Why this could be a deadly flu season for children Though good hygiene (frequent hand washing) and avoidance are the best ways to ward off the flu, it may not be possible, especially if you work around around a variety of people or are in an environment where medical care for the flu is provided. There may be ways to boost your immune system, however, and adding some red ginseng to your diet could be one of them. Research in 2014 from Georgia State University suggests red ginseng, a form of Asian ginseng from Korea, is effective in the treatment and prevention of type A influenza as well as respiratory syncytial virus (RSV). Type A influenza is one of the most common types of the flu identified during flu season, and is the only flu type that can infect other animals in addition to humans. H3N2, the particularly virulent strain of the virus circulating this season, is a type A subtype. According to The Georgia State University research, headed up by Sang-Moo Kang, red ginseng extract administered to laboratory mice improved the survival of human lung epithelial cells infected with influenza virus. What’s more, treatment with red ginseng extract reduced the expression of genes that cause inflammation, and long-term administration showed multiple immune modifying effects, such as “stimulated antiviral production of proteins important in immune response and fewer inflammatory cells in their bronchial wall.” This is not the first time ginseng has been proven beneficial as an antiviral. The University of Maryland Medical Center states: “It’s been said that Asian ginseng boosts the immune system, which might help the body fight off infection and disease. The best evidence is that it may help reduce your risk of getting a cold or flu. Studies have found that ginseng seems to increase the number of immune cells in the blood, and improve the immune system’s response to a flu vaccine. In one study, 227 people got either ginseng or placebo for 12 weeks, and got a flu vaccine after 4 weeks. The number of colds and flu were two-thirds lower in the group that took ginseng.” SEE ALSO: 5 exotic superfoods and their unique health benefits So how much ginseng should you take if you are looking for antiviral benefits? The collective research suggests 400 mg of ginseng daily for 4 months is the standard dose for cold and flu prevention. Because ginseng can cause side-effects, especially if paired with caffeine, consult your doctor before adding ginseng to your regular daily wellness program.The post Maybe you should try some ginseng this flu season appeared first on Voxxi.
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Red ginseng has proven itself an effective antiviral herb. (Shutterstock)

The government has issued a warning about this year’s flu season, indicating it will be serious and potentially deadly for many people. Fifteen children have died already, and the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) feel more deaths are inevitable due to the fact the current influenza vaccine offers little to no protection against the current strain.

SEE ALSO: Why this could be a deadly flu season for children

Though good hygiene (frequent hand washing) and avoidance are the best ways to ward off the flu, it may not be possible, especially if you work around around a variety of people or are in an environment where medical care for the flu is provided.

There may be ways to boost your immune system, however, and adding some red ginseng to your diet could be one of them. Research in 2014 from Georgia State University suggests red ginseng, a form of Asian ginseng from Korea, is effective in the treatment and prevention of type A influenza as well as respiratory syncytial virus (RSV).

Type A influenza is one of the most common types of the flu identified during flu season, and is the only flu type that can infect other animals in addition to humans. H3N2, the particularly virulent strain of the virus circulating this season, is a type A subtype.

According to The Georgia State University research, headed up by Sang-Moo Kang, red ginseng extract administered to laboratory mice improved the survival of human lung epithelial cells infected with influenza virus. What’s more, treatment with red ginseng extract reduced the expression of genes that cause inflammation, and long-term administration showed multiple immune modifying effects, such as “stimulated antiviral production of proteins important in immune response and fewer inflammatory cells in their bronchial wall.”

woman sick in bed
Don’t let the flu get you this season; consider taking ginseng. (Shutterstock)

This is not the first time ginseng has been proven beneficial as an antiviral.

The University of Maryland Medical Center states: “It’s been said that Asian ginseng boosts the immune system, which might help the body fight off infection and disease. The best evidence is that it may help reduce your risk of getting a cold or flu. Studies have found that ginseng seems to increase the number of immune cells in the blood, and improve the immune system’s response to a flu vaccine. In one study, 227 people got either ginseng or placebo for 12 weeks, and got a flu vaccine after 4 weeks. The number of colds and flu were two-thirds lower in the group that took ginseng.”

SEE ALSO: 5 exotic superfoods and their unique health benefits

So how much ginseng should you take if you are looking for antiviral benefits?

The collective research suggests 400 mg of ginseng daily for 4 months is the standard dose for cold and flu prevention. Because ginseng can cause side-effects, especially if paired with caffeine, consult your doctor before adding ginseng to your regular daily wellness program.

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The post Maybe you should try some ginseng this flu season appeared first on Voxxi.