Objective: The aim of this study was to evaluate the effects of red ginseng (RG) on menopausal symptoms and cardiovascular risk factors in postmenopausal women.
Methods: A randomized, placebo-controlled, double-blind clinical trial was conducted with postmenopausal women between the ages of 45 and 60 years. A total of 72 women were randomly assigned to either an RG group (supplemented with 3 g of RG, including 60 mg of ginsenosides, per day) or a placebo group for 12 weeks. We analyzed changes in menopausal symptoms (the Kupperman index and the menopause rating scale), cardiovascular risk factors (lipid profiles, high-sensitivity C-reactive protein, and carotid intima-media thickness), and serum estradiol levels from baseline to 12 weeks.
Results: Significant improvements in the Kupperman index (P = 0.032) and in the menopause rating scale (P = 0.035) scores were observed in the RG group compared with the placebo group. Total cholesterol (P = 0.009) and low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (P = 0.015) significantly decreased in the group receiving RG. The RG group also showed a significant decrease in carotid intima-media thickness (P = 0.049). Serum estradiol levels were not influenced by RG supplementation.
Conclusions: RG could be an attractive herbal dietary supplement for relieving menopausal symptoms and conferring favorable effects on markers of cardiovascular disease in postmenopausal women.