Ginseng linked to better breast cancer survival
Women who used ginseng were more likely to survive breast cancer and have a better quality of life after treatment, found a new study published in the April 1 issue of American Journal of Epidemiology.
The study found that those who took ginseng before diagnosis were 30 percent more likely to survive breast cancer. Those who took ginseng after treatment were more likely to have a more active social life compared with those who did not take any ginseng.
However, the study did not mean to say ginseng is the cause of the better breast cancer survival, but to suggests a possibility. Women who used ginseng may also use some other supplements, which make it hard for scientists to separate the effect of ginseng from that of other supplements.
Previous lab studies have found that some ginseng constituents exhibit anti-cancer properties. Because of this, people tend to believe taking ginseng supplements may help women survive breast cancer.
Ginsengs commonly seen on the market include Panax ginseng also known as Asian ginseng and Panax quinquefoliu, known as American ginseng, mostly from the state of Wisconsin.
Ginseng is often used to enhance the immune system and help relieve fatigue. American ginseng is believed to be mild whereas Red Korean ginseng seems more effective in helping relieve fatigue.
Researchers caution that patients should talk with doctors about use of ginseng supplements because some constituents may potentially react with drugs.
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