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Posted on 06-17-2015

I recently had a patient email me in regard to her symptoms while going to Denver from Phoenix. I thought her symptoms and my response might help others experiencing these symptoms as well.  Here is a copy of our conversation.

I have a question about Ginkgo Biloba.
Do you recommend I take Ginko Biloba before going to higher elevations?
I believe I had a slight case of Mountain,elevation,or altitude sickness this weekend in Alamosa 8000 ft.
Had a little nausea, No appetite and energy level very low. 
Occasional shortness of breath.

When we returned home I was fine. 
BP 121/73 pulse 62 
Energy level was back to normal.

Have a flight to Denver scheduled end of July. If the Ginkgo will help what strength do you suggest.

With your hiking experience I thought you'd be the one to ask also..


Hi Eileen,

That is a very good question. Many of the symptoms of altitude sickness appear to be related to free radical activity and a number of studies have used antioxidants to decrease the effects. Also, as you mentioned, Ginkgo may work because it increases blood circulation and oxygen to the brain. 
My preference when utilizing any product is to use it with others that have similar properties since it has been found that herbs work better synergistically then they do individually. Having said that, there are two products that I feel would be very beneficial. The good news is that you are already taking one of them!  HTN, which is a formula created to help maintain normal blood pressure levels works to help promote vascular tone and therefore is beneficial when going to higher elevations by keeping blood pressure variances from occurring.  
The other product does contain Ginkgo but also other antioxidants which have similar properties as Ginkgo and therefore will enhance it's function.  That product is Flavinox by Allergy Research Group. It contains the following. 
Serving Size: 1 Capsule

Amount Per Serving:
Milk Thistle Extract ... 80mg
(Seed) (Standardized to 80% Silymarin)
Bilberry Extract ... 100mg
(Berries) (Standardized to 25% Anthocyanidins)
Ginkgo Extract ... 40mg
(Leaves) (Standardized to 24% Flavonglycosides and 6% Terpene Lactones)
Grape Seed Extract ... 100mg
(Standardized to 50% Polyphenols)
Green Tea Extract ... 80mg
(Decaffeinated, Standardized to 35% EGCG) 
Cranberry Juice Extract ... 100mg
Hawthorn Extract ... 100mg
(50% as Berry and 50% as Leaves and Flowers) (Standardized to 1.8% Vitexin-2-O-Rhamnoside)

Taking each of these products prior to your trip and certainly during the trip should definitely help. A dosage of 1 capsule three times per day a few days prior and while on your trip should be sufficient. If you are doing any extensive exercise or going to even higher elevations, then you can increase the dosage to two capsules three times per day for those days only. 

I hope this answers your question and I hope you have a great trip!

Yours In Health,

Dr. P. Scott Timko
Timko Chiropractic

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