National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health (NCCIH)
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Health Topics A-Z

Most Used Natural Products

0.7% of U.S. adults (1.8 million) used
ginseng

There was a large decrease in the percentage of adults using ginseng between 2007 and 2012, from 1.5% to 0.7%, or about 1.6 million fewer adults.

People have used ginseng root for a variety of health concerns; however, there’s no strong evidence it helps for any health condition. There are different species of ginseng and the side effects of the species and formulas may vary. Ginseng is generally safe, but it may affect glucose levels and also be unsafe for people with blood pressure disorders. Some experts recommend that women who are pregnant or breastfeeding not use ginseng.

Read more about ginseng.

Adults

4 Citation: Clarke TC, Black LI, Stussman BJ, Barnes PM, Nahin RL. Trends in the use of complementary health approaches among adults: United States, 2002–2012. National health statistics reports; no 79. Hyattsville, MD: National Center for Health Statistics. 2015. (240KB PDF)

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Most Used Natural Products

0.1% of U.S. children (63,000) used
ginseng

People have used ginseng root for a variety of health concerns, including to boost immune function and for attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder. However, there’s no strong evidence it helps for any health condition.

There are different species of ginseng, including wild American ginseng and Panax or Asian ginseng. Panax ginseng should not be given to children because of possible side effects.

Read more about ginseng.

Children

5 Citation: Black LI, Clarke TC, Barnes PM, Stussman BJ, Nahin RL. Use of complementary health approaches among children aged 4-17 years in the United States: National Health Interview Survey, 2007-2012. National health statistics reports; no 78. Hyattsville, MD: National Center for Health Statistics. 2015. (229KB PDF)

* Note: PDF files require a viewer such as the free Adobe Reader.

This page last modified September 24, 2017