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When Should You Take Ginseng?

Ginseng is an ancient herbal medicine that has been used for thousands of years, primarily in Asia. It’s known as an “adaptogen”, meaning it helps the body adapt to stress and promotes balance. Today, ginseng is one of the most popular herbal supplements worldwide. But when is the best time to take it to harness its energizing and restorative properties?

Morning is Best for Energy

Research shows that for an energy boost, taking ginseng in the morning is ideal. Since ginseng can overstimulate the nervous system for some people, it’s best not to take it too close to bedtime, as it may cause insomnia.

Taking ginseng first thing in the morning on an empty stomach is ideal. The ginsenosides, the active compounds in ginseng, are absorbed faster this way. Ginseng increases circulation and alertness, giving you an energizing boost to start your day.

Some people find that ginseng gives them jitters or makes them feel overstimulated. If this happens, take a lower dose or take ginseng earlier in the day, further away from bedtime.

Midday for Mental Performance

Another optimal time to take ginseng is mid-morning or early afternoon. This can help beat the midday slump and boost your mental clarity and concentration when you need it most.

Research shows ginseng can reduce mental fatigue and keep you sharp. It also enhances memory, reaction times, and ability to process information. For demanding cognitive tasks, ginseng can take your brainpower up a notch.

Before Physical Activity

Taking ginseng about an hour before physical activity or exercise is also effective. Studies show ginseng helps increase exercise capacity, endurance, stamina, and muscle strength.

Ginseng boosts nitric oxide levels in the blood, improving circulation. It also enhances utilization of oxygen by muscles and increases metabolic energy. This creates a priming effect, allowing you to push harder during your workout.

During Menopause

For women going through menopause, ginseng can help reduce symptoms like hot flashes, mood swings, anxiety and trouble sleeping. It contains potent antioxidants that balance hormone levels.

Taking ginseng daily is effective for women in perimenopause and postmenopause. The best time to take it is early morning to help with sleep issues. Ginseng works best when taken consistently over a period of several months.

Before Sex

Ginseng has long been used in Traditional Chinese Medicine as an aphrodisiac and sexual tonic for both men and women. Science backs this up – several studies have shown it boosts libido and sexual performance, especially in people with erectile dysfunction.

For men, ginseng relaxes the muscle tissue and improves blood flow to the penis. It also contains compounds that stimulate testosterone production. Taking ginseng about an hour before sex can boost energy, stamina and arousal. Women also report increased sexual desire and satisfaction.


In summary, ginseng is a powerful herbal supplement that can provide an array of benefits. The optimal timing depends on your needs – whether it’s an energy lift, mental edge, physical stamina, help with menopause or better sex. Pay attention to your body’s response and avoid taking ginseng close to bedtime if it disrupts your sleep. Harness the power of this ancient medicinal root by being mindful of when you take it.

About the author

Holden Desalles is a journalist in the new wellness space, covering topics such as CBD, adaptogens, and nootropics. He was formerly a staff writer at the millennial lifestyle website Thought Catalog.

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