Chinese red ginseng root is widely believed to enhance mental concentration, increase stamina, heighten endurance and improve sexual performance. In China, it is also believed to replenish a person's qi, or vital energy. Ginseng root was also a popular healing herb among Native Americans.
Modern herbalists cite the root's effectiveness as a whole body tonic which can be used to treat fever, cough, cold, swelling, breathing issues and feminine issues. Scientific studies have also shown that ginseng is useful to treat other symptoms as well. It is effective in boosting the immune system by stimulating disease-fighting white blood cells.
Ginseng can also help those with high cholesterol by maintaining levels of good cholesterol and reducing levels of bad cholesterol. For diabetics, ginseng root can help lower blood sugar. This herb is also effective at protecting the liver from damage caused by alcohol and other drugs.
Always consult a doctor before beginning any herbal treatment, as ginseng root may interact with other medications, vitamins or supplements. Chinese red ginseng root should not be used by children, pregnant women or those who have blood clotting difficulties. Possible side effects include allergic reactions, insomnia, breast tenderness, asthma-related problems, high blood pressure or irregular heart beat.