The History of Gynostemma

Gynostemma is a herb which is also known as Southern Ginseng and Miracle Green. It is currently the most popular herb in Asia as it has several medicinal properties and no side effects. It is a natural remedy for many ailments and a precautionary solution to prevent you from any major health problem. A lot of studies by experts and scientists are still under process to explore more about this herb.

Origin of Gynostemma

Gynostemma originated in an isolated village in Southern China. Gynostemma plant naturally grows in the wilds of this village of Gynostemma. For almost the last 50 years, research has been going on around Gynostemma leaves due to the high concentration of photochemical present in the leaves. They are known to have several antioxidants, anti-inflammatory, and anti-tumor properties.

In the 1970’s, it was discovered that Gynostemma is a potential substitute for sugar as it has a naturally sweet taste. Masahiro Nagai found that it has higher saponin content as compared to the active ingredient, Ginseng roots. Later, Tsunematsu Takemoto discovered that Gynostemma contains four saponins which are similar to what are present in Ginseng roots and seventeen additional saponins. In the following decades, it was found that Gynostemma has 82 saponins whereas Ginseng roots have only 28.

Apart from Southern China and Thailand, Gynostemma has grown in other parts of the world also but those are not considered as authentic and powerful. They are known to be produced in the natural environment in America and other western countries but the source of water and the soil they grow on is not as natural and fresh as what it is in Southern China.

Why did the Herb become popular so late?

This herb was first noticed by a physician Zhu Xiao in the year 1406. In a medical text – Material Medica for Famine, he suggested Gynostemma as a cheap dietary supplement for poor people. Again in the late 1500’s, Li Shi Zhen confused Gynostemma with some other herb and mentioned in a medical text – Compendium of Material Medica that this is a herb which is supposed to heal cuts and bruises. This confusion was clarified much later by Wu Qi-Ju in a book – Textual Investigation of Herbal plants where all the benefits and advantages of having Gynostemma were clearly mentioned and elaborated. It also mentioned the application of this precious herb.

Earlier, there was more focus on the herbs available in North and Central China and this confusion further led to the usage of Gynostemma never becoming so popular in China back then. It just remained known and popular amongst the villagers in Southern China. These villagers loved the taste of it even better than that of Tea. It was also abundantly available and it was easy and cheap for them to get it.

When the China Census actually happened in 1970’s, the story came out and everyone was startled seeing the results. This led to the discovery of the benefits and usage of Gynostemma in the modern world. Since then, this herb has become very famous and in demand all around the world.

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