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NK cell booster Siberian ginseng working well for anxiety and depression. NK cells fight cytomegalovirus — linked to various mental health symptoms

Hip

Senior Member
Messages
17,976
In an earlier thread, I detailed how reactivated cytomegalovirus has been linked to several mental health symptoms, including anxiety, depression, bipolar and psychosis.

That thread also mentions how natural killer (NK) cell functioning is considered important in keeping cytomegalovirus suppressed.

So I decided to try an experiment, taking daily 2.5 grams of a 70:1 Siberian ginseng (Eleutherococcus senticosus) bulk powder extract that I bought from China some years ago.

I believe Siberian ginseng is a good booster of NK cell functioning / activity.

Well since starting daily Siberian ginseng one month ago, I found my mental health has substantially improved. Symptoms that I was getting — such as generalised anxiety disorder, depression, stress and emotional sensitivity, and psychosis-like symptoms — have almost entirely disappeared since starting on daily Siberian ginseng.


So for anyone with these sorts of mental health symptoms alongside their ME/CFS, and who also has high cytomegalovirus antibody titres like I do, Siberian ginseng might be an interesting experiment. I found the improvements in mental health manifested within days of starting Siberian ginseng.

I think Siberian ginseng is preventative of mental health symptoms appearing, rather than a treatment for these symptoms once they have appeared.

I am guessing that my mental symptoms may have been driven by an active cytomegalovirus infection, and that Siberian ginseng has suppressed this infection, leading to improved mental health. My cytomegalovirus titres have been persistently high for years, around 32 times higher than the lab reference for negative.


I bought this Siberian ginseng a long time ago as a bulk powder from China. If the specifications can be believed, it is a pretty strong 70:1 extract. And I have been taking 2.5 grams (1 level teaspoon) of this power daily.

I could not see any extract quite as strong as this for sale when I Google just now, but you can buy bulk Siberian ginseng bulk powder online reasonably cheaply (for example, 500 grams for $30).


There are other NK cell function boosters that might be used instead of Siberian ginseng. This post lists a number of these boosters. Perhaps the strongest NK cell booster is BioBran / MGN-3, but this is very expensive. Aged garlic also appears quite a strong NK booster.


Note that this article advises that Siberian ginseng can be taken for 3 months, followed by 3 to 4 weeks off.
 
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Hip

Senior Member
Messages
17,976
For those interested, note that Siberian ginseng is not a real ginseng, the plant's name is Eleutherococcus senticosus.

Yes, Siberian ginseng has no relation to the regular Panax ginseng species (often called Korean ginseng).

Siberian ginseng is a completely different species, and I believe the "Siberian ginseng" label is just a marketing name.
 

Mary

Moderator Resource
Messages
17,527
Location
Texas Hill Country
I've had good results with this product (Eleuthero Root (Wu Jian Shen) Siberian Ginseng) from Modern Herb Shop on-line - https://www.modernherbshop.com/For_Adrenal_and_Endocrine_System_Health_p/eleutheroroottablets.htm

the recommended dose is 3 to 4 tablets, twice a day. I found that 2 tablets total gave me a (small) noticeable boost in energy. I'm afraid to take more, afraid it might cause insomnia! But it's a very good product and cheap. My sister (who does not have ME/CFS) takes it whenever she gets sick and likes it.
 

Hip

Senior Member
Messages
17,976
After my success with Siberian ginseng, which I think might be due to its NK cell activation boosting, I'd really like to try what it considered a very potent NK booster supplement, BioBran.

BioBran was developed in Japan, but seems to be sold at rip-off prices: 30 sachets costs around $150.
 

L'engle

moogle
Messages
3,256
Location
Canada
I've had mood improvements from a turmeric supplement, a curcumin with chaga and ashwagandha supplement, and a turmeric tea with tulsi. Reishi mushrooms also improve NK cells.

Would be interesting to try the Siberian ginseng as well.
 

Cipher

Administrator
Messages
1,001
Well since starting daily Siberian ginseng one month ago, I found my mental health has substantially improved. Symptoms that I was getting — such as generalised anxiety disorder, depression, stress and emotional sensitivity, and psychosis-like symptoms — have almost entirely disappeared since starting on daily Siberian ginseng.
Yeah! So happy to hear this!
 
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heapsreal

iherb 10% discount code OPA989,
Messages
10,131
Location
australia (brisbane)
After my success with Siberian ginseng, which I think might be due to its NK cell activation boosting, I'd really like to try what it considered a very potent NK booster supplement, BioBran.

BioBran was developed in Japan, but seems to be sold at rip-off prices: 30 sachets costs around $150.

Is BioBran the mushroom extract AHCC?
I used ahcc several years back and it was promising but was expensive. I remember the first night I took it, I broke out in a fever/sweats etc but no more after that. So it seems it does something for the immune system. I wish it wasn't so expensive as I think long-term use like a year, would probably get the most effects from it.

With adaptogens like ginseng etc, I wonder how much they effect neurotransmitters and dopamine specifically, as many of them are said to be aphrodisiacs, which I think maybe working through dopamine. I'm not convinced they do much for increasing total testosterone but it's possible it may increase free testosterone through lowering shbg???

Good news siberian ginseng is helping👍
 

Hip

Senior Member
Messages
17,976
Is BioBran the mushroom extract AHCC?

BioBran is different to AHCC, though they are both immune stimulants and related to shiitake mushrooms.

BioBran is made from rice bran which is broken down using enzymes from the shiitake mushroom. Whereas AHCC is made from an extract of shiitake mushroom.



With adaptogens like ginseng etc, I wonder how much they effect neurotransmitters and dopamine specifically, as many of them are said to be aphrodisiacs, which I think maybe working through dopamine.

Yes, with Siberian ginseng, it is known to be an anti-stress and anti-fatigue adaptogen. In rat studies, it was shown to increase dopamine, noradrenaline and serotonin (see this article).

So it could be that the mental health benefits derive from these effects on neurotransmitters, rather than working through the NK cell boosting mechanism I have assumed it works by.


I've used Siberian ginseng in the past though, without noticing much benefit, except perhaps a very slight improvement in energy levels. However, in the past, I did not have the mental symptoms triggered by acquiring COVID, and this herb seems to work well for those psychiatric symptoms.
 

L'engle

moogle
Messages
3,256
Location
Canada
An update: I feel some energy from the turmeric, but it increases potassium loss so I can only take small amounts.

Also definitely a good energy incrase from reishi but... as mushrooms have vitamin d it can cause me to need more magnesium, vit k etc.

Chaga seems very different from reishi. I started taking it in the mornings and realized it was somewhat sedating while also providing a pleasant mood and a generally nice feeling. If I take it in the evening its a good destress. I think it also causes potassium need and possibly magnesium. Less is more it seems.

The chaga actually tastes nice and the powder is pleasant to have in tea or cocoa. I only take 1/4 tsp.

Just adding onto here rather than starting an extra thread as people who are interested in ginseng are also likely to find this worthwhile.
 
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