Endothelial cells line the walls of all blood vessels. Normal function of these
cells is needed for good blood flow, maintaining healthy blood pressure readings,
and appropriate blood clotting mechanisms, as well as regulating the amount
of mineral electrolytes in body tissues and in the blood. Damage to this endothelial
carpet is an early occurrence in hardening of the arteries and the development
of heart disease/ Endothelial damage occurs well in advance of clinical signs
of coronary artery disease,. Endothelial dysfunction is prognostic of cardiovascular
events (stroke and heart attack). Smoking, diabetes, uncontrolled high blood
pressure, high cholesterol, and inflammation all can damage this lining. Aging
also affects the lining and decreases endothelial function. This can damage
the control of blood flow to the heart muscle.
Ginkgo biloba extract (GBE) has well-documented anti-ageing effects. However,
little is yet known about the pharmacological actions of GBE on endothelial
dysfunction and coronary blood flow in healthy elderly adults. We designed the
study to test the effects of GBE on left coronary artery (LAD) blood flow and
on blood flow in the extremities (brachial artery of the arm) of healthy elderly
adults. Sixty healthy elderly adults were randomly assigned to either GBE or
control groups. Blood flow was measured using high-resolution ultrasound before
and after administration of GBE or placebo. GBE significantly increased LAD
blood flow in diastolic and systolic beats compared with the placebo group.
Blood flow in the arm also increased by 56.03%. Our data demonstrate that GBE
treatment in healthy elderly adults leads to the increase of blood flow to the
heart, and the increased response might relate to the improved endothelial function
allowing the blood vessels to relax (dilate) and open with an improved capacity.
This study implies an important future therapeutic strategy of using GBE to
counteract the detrimental effects of ageing. The study is published in the
February 5th, 2008 issue of the journal Phytomedicine; the International
Journal of Phytotherapy and Phytopharmacology.
Phosphatidylserine supplement reduces stress and improves mood
These researchers report that previous studies show that Phosphatidylserine
supplements blunt the release of cortisol; a problematic stress hormone and
improve mood during stress (due to exertion). In this study young, mildly neurotic
adults were supplemented with Phosphatidylserine 300mg a day (always take this
with meals) for a month. The supplement improved their mood and decreased their
stressed out feeling. The study performed at the Department of Psychology, University
of Wales Swansea in the UK was published in the journal Nutritional Neuroscience,
Ginkgo biloba may help alleviate anxiety in young patients and in elderly
patients with cognitive decline
Ginkgo biloba is an anti-dementia drug. It enhances cognitive function and stabilizes
mood in the cognitively impaired elderly. Ginkgo biloba has been found to relieve
anxiety in people with mental decline. In this study 107 younger patients with
anxiety disorder (or adjustment disorder with anxiety). The subjects were randomly
given 480mg of Ginkgo biloba, 240mg of Ginkgo biloba or a placebo daily for
4 weeks. Anxiety improved significantly over placebo in both Ginkgo groups with
the higher dosage having a better effect (both dosages provided significant
relief). The study is published in the June 27th issue of the Journal of
*These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. These products are not intended to treat, diagnose, cure, or prevent any disease.
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