Herbal remedy does not prevent people developing Alzheimer's, large study shows
Published 6 September 2012
Ginkgo biloba does not significantly reduce older people’s risk of developing Alzheimer’s, according to research published in Lancet Neurology.
The study by University of Toulouse, involved 2,854 people in France aged 70 years old or older who had gone to their GP with memory problems. 1,406 people were given 120mg of ginkgo biloba twice a day for five years while 1,414 people were given a placebo. After five years, 61 (four per cent) of people in the ginkgo biloba group had been diagnosed with Alzheimer's compared to 73 (five per cent) of people in the placebo group.
Alzheimer's Society comment:
'It is understandable that people would want to hear that an over-the-counter herbal remedy could be the answer to preventing Alzheimer's. For a while it was hoped that ginkgo biloba could be the wonder drug. However, in recent years evidence - including a previous study by Alzheimer's Society - has repeatedly shown that it does not have any benefits in preventing the disease or slowing down symptoms.
'One in three people over 65 will develop dementia. The best way for people to reduce their risk is to eat a healthy diet, exercise regularly, not smoke and keep their cholesterol levels in check.'
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