Mountain Sickness: Gingko

Dear Friends:

Several of us have mountain sickness when we go to Lama, and I do not find chlorophyl helpful. Some of us still experience mountain sickness while taking it. So, I was very interesting while watching the National Geographic channel a couple of weeks ago. I was watching a program on mountain climbing. What was intriguing to me especially was that the show was documenting and replicating a previous study to monitor the effects of the herb Gingko Biloba on Acute Mountain Sickness (AMS). The visual results were remarkable. What was more remarkable was that almost all the people were experiencing mountain sickness at 14,000 ft. And THEN, they took the Ginkgo. And they stopped having symptoms.

Scientific literature is mixed as to validation. However, some of the results are impressive with as few as 17% of participants experiencing the symptoms of AMS when taking ginkgo biloba. Precautions with this herb are  that it can inhibit platelet clotting , so don’t take it if you are on a blood thinner.. And someone experience more high blood pressure when they took this and a thiazide diuretic (like hydrochlorothiazide), so don’t take this herb if you are on a medicine like this.
When to take it varies in the literature–1-5 days before ascent to the mountain.
doses vary as well– 60 mg three times a day or 160 mg per day. Maximum recommended dose is 240 mg unless advised by your health practitioner.

Hope this is helpful, and if someone tries this, I would be interested in hearing about it. I will be doing this when I go to Lama this year.

Love, Farishta Shafiya Angela Amundsen