American Ginseng


American ginseng (Panax quinquefolis) is an herb that grows mainly in North America. Wild American ginseng is in such high demand that it has been declared a threatened or endangered species in some states in the United States.

People take American ginseng by mouth for stress, to boost the immune system, and as a stimulant. American ginseng is also used for infections of the airways such as colds and flu, for diabetes, and many other conditions, but there is no good scientific evidence to support any of these uses.

You may also see American ginseng listed as an ingredient in some soft drinks. Oils and extracts made from American ginseng are used in soaps and cosmetics.

Don't confuse American ginseng with Asian ginseng (Panax ginseng) or Eleuthero (Eleutherococcus senticosus). They have different effects.


Is a Form of:


Primary Functions:


Also Known As:

Anchi Ginseng, Baie Rouge, Canadian Ginseng

How Does It Work?

American ginseng contains chemicals called ginsenosides that seem to affect insulin levels in the body and lower blood sugar. Other chemicals, called polysaccharides, might affect the immune system.


  • Diabetes. Some research shows that taking American ginseng by mouth, up to two hours before a meal, can lower blood sugar after a meal in patients with type 2 diabetes. Taking American ginseng by mouth daily for 8 weeks might also help lower pre-meal blood sugar levels in patients with type 2 diabetes.
  • Infection of the airways. Some research suggests that taking a specific American ginseng extract called CVT-E002 (Cold-FX, Afexa Life Sciences) 200-400 mg twice daily for 3-6 months during flu season might prevent cold or flu symptoms in adults. In adults older than 65, a flu shot at month 2 along with this treatment is needed to decrease the risk of getting the flu or colds. In people who do get the flu, taking this extract seems to help make symptoms milder and last for less time. Some research shows that the extract might not reduce the chance of getting the first cold of a season, but it seems to reduce the risk of getting repeat colds in a season. It does not seem to help prevent cold or flu-like symptoms in patients with weakened immune systems.

Recommended Dosing

The following doses have been studied in scientific research:


  • For diabetes: 3 grams up to 2 hours before a meal. 100-200 mg of American ginseng has been taken daily for up to 8 weeks.
  • For infection of the airways: A specific American ginseng extract called CVT-E002 (Cold-FX, Afexa Life Sciences) 200-400 mg twice daily for 3-6 months has been used.

American Ginseng Supplements Frequently Asked Questions

What is the best American Ginseng?

  • Nature's Answer American Ginseng.
  • B+ Solgar Korean Ginseng.
  • B Auragin Korean Ginseng.
  • B Buddha's Herbs Panax Ginseng.
  • B Puritan's Pride American Ginseng.
  • Nature's Way Korean Ginseng.
  • Sundown Naturals Korean Ginseng.
  • B- Woohoo Natural Pure American Ginseng.

Why is growing ginseng illegal?

Because the slow-growing plant is destroyed to harvest the root, those who illegally harvest ginseng can face stiff fines or imprisonment.

How much American ginseng should I take?

When taken by mouth: American ginseng is LIKELY SAFE when taken appropriately, short-term. Doses of 100-3000 mg daily have been used safely for up to 12 weeks. Single doses of up to 10 grams have also been safely used.

What are the side effects of American ginseng?

In general, ginseng use is well tolerated, but some patients experience side effects when taking it. Side effects associated with both Asian and American ginseng include nervousness, insomnia, changes in blood pressure, breast pain, vaginal bleeding, vomiting, diarrhea, and mania.

Is American ginseng better than Korean ginseng?

American ginseng (Panax quinquefolius)

American ginseng is considered cooler in nature and less stimulating than Asian ginseng. Its use is suitable for young and middle aged people and can be used long term. American ginseng is known to help boost the immune system and balance blood sugar levels.

Is American ginseng safe?

When taken by mouth: American ginseng is LIKELY SAFE when taken appropriately, short-term. Doses of 100-3000 mg daily have been used safely for up to 12 weeks. Single doses of up to 10 grams have also been safely used.

Does American ginseng raise blood pressure?

An early observational study suggested that ginseng could elevate blood pressure. This caused concern because 4.5% of American adults use ginseng, with a popular choice being North American ginseng.

Is American ginseng a blood thinner?

American ginseng can lower blood glucose levels and could create problems for patients fasting before surgery. In addition, American ginseng may act as a blood thinner, increasing the risk of bleeding during or after the procedure.

What is American ginseng good for?

Both American ginseng (Panax quinquefolius, L.) and Asian ginseng (P. Ginseng) are believed to boost energy, lower blood sugar and cholesterol levels, reduce stress, promote relaxation, treat diabetes, and manage sexual dysfunction in men.

Is American ginseng the same as Panax ginseng?

There are two main types of ginseng: Asian or Korean ginseng (Panax ginseng) and American ginseng (Panax quinquefolius). Studies have found that the different types have different benefits. In traditional Chinese medicine, American ginseng is considered less stimulating than the Asian variety.

Does ginseng cause blood clots?

"With too small a dose, the risk of clots increases -- but too much can cause serious bleeding," Yuan warns in a news release. "So a substance, such as ginseng, that alters [Coumadin's] effects -- even slightly -- can have significant consequences." Ginseng is a popular herbal remedy.

Clinical Studies