Here is My Question:
Is it safe to use Ginseng to boost energy and fight MS fatigue? If yes, which variety?
Not much is really known about ginseng in this regard; however, there was a published study from Iran that looked at this issue. They performed a double-blind study among 60 women with MS who were either randomized to taking ginseng 250mg twice a day or a placebo pill twice a day. They measures a couple patient report surveys (one on quality of life and the other on fatigue). After 3 months of taking the study medicine, the women taking the ginseng reported less fatigue (just barely statistically significant) and much improved quality of life.
They didn't report any adverse events over the short 3 month study period (although it is not clear if there are long-term safety concerns. Among the 60 patients 52 actually completed the study.
If interested, the study/paper can be found:
Int J Neurosci. 2013 Jul;123(7):480-6. doi: 10.3109/00207454.2013.764499. Epub 2013 Feb 11.
Ginseng in the treatment of fatigue in multiple sclerosis: a randomized, placebo-controlled, double-blind pilot study.
A. Scott Nielsen MD MMSc
Neurologist and MS Specialist at Kaiser Permanente
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