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Trees that are strong enough to survive an atomic bombing, guess what they could do to your body if you ate it? Ginkgo biloba happens to be one of these mighty plants and it has been around ever since the dinosaurs existed. Strongly resistant to disease, rarely inhabited by insects, ginkgo biloba is so powerful that even pollution and confined spaces didn’t stop it from flourishing. A food source that can be used for both sweet and savoury dishes, you can also gain possible medicinal benefits from it too! Originally native to China, Ginkgo Biloba’s Asian roots have now spread internationally and its advantages are getting recognized.  

Most common in Asian culture, Ginkgo Biloba can be used in soup, dessert, or alone as a snack or appetizer. One popular item you might find in Hong Kong is bean curd skin and ginkgo nut sweet soup, a dessert said to help promote youthful skin. There’s also a chance you’ll bite into one inside a Japanese egg custard appetizer known as Chawanmushi. If those sound a little too foreign or complicated to you, Martha Stewart uses Ginkgo leaves to make a nice tea!

In terms of medicinal use, Ginkgo Biloba has been linked to a number of benefits. As an antioxidant, Ginkgo Biloba can help aid in the prevention of cell damage. Studies have also shown promising results with consumption of the herb on illnesses such as dementia, anxiety, schizophrenia, and concentration. If you need a little boost in the bedroom, Biloba is also considered to be an aphrodisiac. What a plant!

Before you start buying Ginkgo in bulk or searching high and low for the tree, be careful. Some people are very sensitive to the leaves and shell of the nuts; it can be compared to coming in contact with poison ivy.  

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Crane, P. (2015). Ginkgo: The Tree That Time Forgot (p. 6). New Haven, Connecticut: Yale University Press.

Ehrlich, S. (2015, June 22). Ginkgo biloba. Retrieved December 16, 2015, from https://umm.edu/health/medical/altmed/herb/ginkgo-biloba

Del Tredici, P. (n.d.). Hibaku Trees of Hiroshima. Retrieved December 16, 2015, from http://arnoldia.arboretum.harvard.edu/pdf/articles/1993-53-3-hibaku-trees-of-hiroshima.pdf

Ginkgo (Ginkgo biloba). (2013, November 1). Retrieved December 16, 2015, from http://www.mayoclinic.org/drugs-supplements/ginkgo/background/hrb-20059541

Ginkgo Seed Poisoning. PEDIATRICS Vol. 109 No. 2 February 2002, pp. 325-327

Lydon, S. (2015, December 14). Living fossils: The plants holding the key to ancient and modern climate change. The Guardian. Retrieved December 16, 2015, from http://www.theguardian.com/science/blog/2015/dec/14/climate-change-plants-key-to-ancient-modern-fossil

Tsuji, S., & Tsuji, Y. (2012). Japanese Cooking: A Simple Art (p. 71). Kodansha.


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