Ginger, with its origin in China, is not only considered as a spice used in Asian and Indian cuisines; it is used in many beverages too. For instance, Ginger-Tea and Ginger-Sugarcane juice are commonly used as beverages at workplaces across the globe. It is commonly grown in India, Jamaica, Fiji, Indonesia, and Australia. Ginger’s medicinal properties were well known to our ancestors and also, Ginger is classified as one of the super-foods by dieticians due to the presence of Gingerol – a bioactive compound that plays a key role in making ginger the queen of medicinal plants. Here are a plethora of health benefits to justify the same:
- Rich in Anti-inflammatory & Antioxidant Property
A significant quantity of gingerol works as both an anti-inflammatory and antioxidant agent thus nourishing both the brain and the body.
- The panacea for different types of nausea
Nausea comes in different types— motion/travel sickness, sea sickness, allergy to food, morning sickness and surprisingly any type of nausea can be eradicated by regular intake of Ginger.
- Fitness Freaks Darling
People who exercise a lot often get pains in joints and muscles. It is proven that intake of Ginger can relieve those who indulge in excessive elbow-exercises. All in all, it can relieve us from muscle soreness and pain. Again this property of Ginger is due to abundant antioxidants present in them.
- Soothes from Osteoarthritis pain
Joint pains and stiffness are two major symptoms of Osteoarthritis. It is a common ailment amongst the older generation. By using ginger oil in combination with cinnamon, mastic, and sesame oil, joint pains can be subsidized in arthritis patients.
- Anti-Diabetic and Pro-Cardiovascular agent
Though research is in a nascent stage, ginger consumption has proven to lower blood sugar levels. HbA1c is a parameter used to measure long-term blood sugar levels and experiments have proved that intake of 2 gram of ginger per day lowered fasting-blood sugar by 12%. Also, observations have shown a 23% reduction in oxidized lipoproteins (bad cholesterol) that induce heart diseases.
- Healer of Chronic Indigestion
Chronic indigestion results in severe discomfort in the upper part of the stomach and is also identified by recurrent pain. The main culprit of chronic indigestion is delayed passing of bowels. Ginger has proven to speed up the process of emptying the stomach among patients suffering from chronic constipation. Even amongst healthy individuals, 1.2 grams of ginger powder consumption accelerated the stomach emptying process by 50%. Also, gastrointestinal irritation is relieved by phenolic compounds available in ginger. It stimulates saliva and bile production easing the digestion process.
- Natural Painkiller during Menstrual cycles
Many women suffer from severe pains during menstrual cycles. Studies have proven that consumption of 1 gram of ginger powder per day during the menstrual cycle relieved women of the trauma they had to undergo. It works as a natural painkiller and can be a replacement for drugs like ibuprofen and mefenamic acid kind.
- Improves Memory and Prevents Alzheimer’s Disease
Premature aging occurs due to inflammatory cells active in the brain. This often leads to premature aging and also can end up with Alzheimer’s disease. But regular intake of ginger can supply antioxidants that can inhibit inflammatory cells in the brain, thus slowing down the aging process. In addition, it is proven in many studies that ginger extracts can improve memory power.
- A Natural Antibiotic
Bacterias, Viruses that invade our body and induce various types of diseases can be fought by the intake of ginger. As gingerol— a bioactive substance available in abundance in fresh ginger works as a natural antibiotic killing RSV virus that infects the respiratory tract.
- Ginger helps to fight cancer
Ginger has the ability to induce cancer cells death, it has the ability to sensitize cancer cells to radiations, inhibits the growth of new blood vessels that spread cancer, inhibits cancer cell migration.
- Fights against common cold and flu
Ginger tea is good to take during the cold season. It has the ability to keep the body warm from within and adapt to cold weather conditions. Ginger tea taken with a slice of lemon or a drop of honey also helps us to fight cold and flu. It also exhibits characteristics to fight asthma and other respiratory disorders
- By-products of Ginger
Also, ginger extract and ginger oil are used in medicines like tinctures, capsules, and lozenges. The ginger can be consumed fresh, powdered, dried as a spice, in oil form, or as juice.
- Ginger Protects Liver
Liver toxicity happens in Tuberculosis patients due to high intake of anti-tuberculosis drugs. Such patients can rely upon supplements of ginger to subsidize toxicity of liver. Ginger fights non-alcoholic fatty liver disease and related metabolic diseases.
- Ginger protects DNA cells
A mold toxin called aflatoxin B1 is known to damage DNA cells and ginger has proven its ability to reduce DNA damage and even it has the ability to protect sperm DNA from oxidative stress. Thus it helps to improve fertility in men.
Though ginger has no side effects as such, extensive consumption can lead to diarrhea, mouth irritation and acid reflux. So be aware of the amount of ginger you are consuming and stay healthy!