Ginger is one of the most widely used spice in the world. This tasty herb is also very healthy as it is rich in many nutrients and phytochemicals. Ginger offers multiple health benefits ranging from aiding in metabolism to controlling headaches
The pungent and spicy ginger is regularly used in cooking particularly in the Chinese, Indian and Middle Eastern countries. Asian vegetable dishes usually contain the aromatic ginger. It is a herb that has both spice and therapeutic values. The flesh of the ginger is usually yellow, white or red in color, depending upon where it is grown. A thick or thin brownish skin covers the flash. Ginger has a striated texture and an aromatic, pungent and hot taste. Ginger is not allergic and doesn’t contain any oxalate or purines; therefore it is a very safe food product.
Main Health Benefits of Ginger
Ginger offers many health benefits. Top 9are described below:
1. Ginger Improves Digestion
Ginger is one of the best home remedies for digestion problems. Ginger has been used in cooking for thousands of years due to its capacity to help in digestion. Phenolic compounds such as gingerol and shogaol, and other volatile oils in ginger produces beneficial impact on digestive system. It reduces bloating and flatulence. Drink ginger tea half an hour before every meal for best results.
2. Ginger Boosts Immunity
Ginger boosts your immune system. It promotes healthy sweat. It has been found that sweat contains potent germ fighting compounds that fight fungi and candida on the skin surface. Other bacteria such as E.coli and Staphylococcus aureus etc. are also killed by the healthy sweat. The protein that is produced by the sweat glands is called dermcidin. Ginger promotes dermcidin to reach the skin surface faster.
A fresh tea made from ½ an inch of ginger root is all that is required to produce that wonderful therapeutic result.
3. Ginger Decreases Nausea and Vomiting
In various studies ginger has been found to provide superior motion sickness relief than even the Dramamine, a popular OTC and prescription drug. It reduces all symptoms related to motion sickness including cold sweating, nausea, vomiting and dizziness.
Pregnant women can really get maximum relief from the nausea and vomiting from ginger. Vomiting is common during pregnancy. Prescriptions drugs to reduce vomiting during pregnancy can cause birth defects in the children, but ginger is absolutely safe and provides but better control over vomiting.
4. Ginger Reduces Inflammations
Ginger is a very potent anti-inflammatory compound found in ginger helps pain reduction in arthritis. Regular consumption of ginger improves mobility among osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis patients. Ginger reduces swelling and pain.
Regular use of ginger as a spice in daily cooking helps arthritis related knee pains. It provides double benefits of pain reduction as well as improved mobility.
5. Ginger Relieves Muscle Pain
Exercise generally causes muscles to stretch. If you have not been regularly exercising and suddenly jump into it or if are regularly exercising but do a more strenuous exercise then muscle pain cannot be avoided.
Ginger reduces exercise induced muscle pain.
6. Ginger Diminishes Migraines
Ginger powder is used to reduce migraine. Dried ginger powder is commercially available in most grocery shops. You can consume ginger powder directly or by adding it to hot water. Keep one fourth of a teaspoon of ginger powder on your tongue and let is slowly melt and move down your throat.
7. Ginger Eases Painful Menstruation
Menstruation pain is a monthly routine for young adult females. The pain also called a period pain or dysmenorrhea can be significantly reduced by consuming ginger extracts in capsule or powder form. Even ginger tea can provide the same benefit.
8. Ginger Lowers High Blood pressure
Various studies have shown the powerful capabilities of ginger to reduce high blood pressure. In a study done at Chiang Mai University in Thailand, the researchers found that the ginger is able to reduce high blood pressure almost more than 3.5 times the prescribed prazosin hydrochloride does.
Sipping a cup of simple ginger tea everyday morning, can go a long way in controlling your high blood pressure.
9. Ginger Protects Against Cancer
Ginger provides protection against colorectal cancer. Gingerols, the compound which is also responsible for the smell and taste of ginger is the compound, which acts both as chemopreventive as well as chemotherapeutic agent to fight cancer.
Ginger extract also has been found to kill ovarian cancer cells by inducing programmed cell death. In presence of ginger extract the ovarian cancer forming cells have been found to decrease. Conventional chemotherapeutic agents also do the same job but they develop resistance quickly whereas ginger extract continues to fight and destroy those cells.
Regular use of ginger in the cooking as well as adding ginger extract to make soothing drinks will provide good protection against ovarian cancer. Most ovarian cancers are diagnosed at late stages when the cancer has spread in other parts of the body. Early detection is a real problem because it doesn’t give any symptoms. Early prevention with consumption of ginger regularly is a better option.
Different Ways to Use Ginger
You can use ginger in many different ways. Some of the most common and effective ways to use ginger to get the most benefits are as under:
- Raw ginger in foods
- Ginger Tea
- Ginger powder
- Dried roots
- Pickled Ginger
- Crystallised ginger
- Ginger essential Oil
Tips and Precautions
- add ginger to your daily food for taste and health benefits
- drink ginger tea regularly ( replace other tea and coffee with ginger tea)
- add ginger to your smoothies and juices
Ginger contain moderate amount of oxalate. So, if you are prone to oxalate types of kidney stones then keep your ginger intake to a very low levels. Otherwise ginger is a very safe and healthy spice.
Ginger has no side effects but it can interact with other herbs and medicine you may be taking. So consult your doctor if you decide to regularly consume ginger to cure one or more of the above listed conditions along with the prescribed medicine. Usually there should be no problems but you must consult your doctor.