Panax ginseng in history
Panax ginseng is a perennial shrub, native to north-eastern China, Korea and Russia.2 It was traditionally used as a tonic to support the body in times of increased demand and to promote good health and vitality.
You may have heard of ‘ginseng’ before, but it’s important to know that not all ginseng is the same. Ginseng comprises a genus called ‘Panax’. Several species of ginseng exist within this, e.g. Panax ginseng CA Meyer, Panax notoginseng and so on. All are ginseng but Panax ginseng CA Meyer in particular is the one with a considerable clinical research base demonstrating its medical use.3
Panax ginseng was first recorded in Chinese medicine over 2000 years ago, and has reportedly been the subject of thousands of published books and scientific papers before the year 2000.2,3,17
The herb’s name comes from Panax meaning ‘cure all’ in Greek and ginseng from the Chinese (Mandarin) rén shn meaning ‘person ginseng’ because of the human like shape of the plant’s root.