This herb promotes vasodilation and improves blood flow both in the arteries and capillaries. It may also have antioxidant benefits. Ginkgo is claimed to help with short-term memory loss, dementia, and a condition called intermittent claudication*.
Studies on ginkgo biloba extract have been done in Europe, and almost all used a standardized extract. Some improvement in concentration and ability to remember were noted in elderly patients. No changes in intermittent claudication were seen.
Side effects reported include: gastrointestinal disturbances, headaches, and allergic skin reactions.
* Intermittent claudication is a severe pain in the calf muscles that occurs during walking but subsides with rest. It is caused by inadequate blood supply to the muscles.