Ginger is a flowering plant originated from South Asian countries. It belongs to Zingiberaceae family which includes cardamom and turmeric. Ginger spice comes from the rhizome or ginger root of the ginger plant.

Ginger is native to warmer parts of the Asia like China, Japan and India however due to its medicinal values it has lately been grown on other parts of the world. Its cultivation can also be observed in Arabian Peninsula.

Ginger has been commonly used as spice in South Asian region however, its medicinal contributions can’t be ruled out. Traditionally it has been used as remedies against indigestion, inflammation and cold. In addition to these it may have other medicinal contribution that’s needs recognition.

Ginger can also be used as flavouring agents in juices, mojitos, candy however it has also been known to be used for fragrance in candles and soaps and cosmetics.

Benefits of Ginger

Ginger have been proven helpful against varieties of ailments however, some have strong medical research validation, and some may require more research.

 Some of the benefits of Ginger consumption are illustrated below:

Nausea/Vomiting

Several researches established that use of ginger in reducing nausea and vomiting caused due to antiviral therapy such as HIV drugs. Daily consumption of ginger 30 minutes before taking antiviral medicine will be helpful in reducing medical induced nausea and vomiting.

Morning Sickness

Morning sickness is another form of nausea and vomiting found commonly in pregnant women. Taking ginger in diet helps in reducing the nausea and vomiting however, it may have other side effects if consumed in in parallel with existing medication.

Pregnant ladies often have varieties of complications which needs medical attention. Though me may find some relief after consumption of ginger but needs to be thoroughly discussed with medical consultants before consumption.

Menstrual Cramps

It is also known as dysmenorrhea. The studies have concluded that consumption ginger in 0.5-2 grams for three days during menstrual period will helps in reducing abdominal pain. It can also be consumed at the beginning of pain and continued for three days for better results.

It is as effective as the painkillers like ibuprofen, mefenamic acid, or Novafen. It can also be consumed in parallel with the medicine like mefenamic acid which may yield better results.

Osteoarthritis

Researches shows that the oral intake of ginger may provide relief from the pain caused by osteoarthritis. It may be as effective as some painkillers like ibuprofen and diclofenac in reducing joint pains. 

It has also been used as massage oil for reducing joint pains in knee and hip however, few studies validate this phenomenon. To understand the complete implication of ginger in reference to osteoarthritis, further research and investigation needs to be performed.

Anti-inflammatory

Traditional use of ginger against inflammation makes it an important anti-inflammatory agent. Several studies have concluded the oral intake of ginger may help in reducing inflammation at the joints caused by osteoarthritis. 

It is observed that people suffering with osteoarthritis having ginger intake required less pain releasing medications than the other group.

Improved Digestion

People with dyspepsia may find some relief after consumption of 1.5-2 grams of ginger powder. Traditionally, ginger has known to be used as remedies against in indigestion. South Asian region is known for its spicy food however, culinary use of ginger helps in the digestion of spicy foods.

Researchers have observed that consumption of ginger powder before eating might help in enhanced metabolism and helps in proper bowel movement.

Diabetes

Some studies suggest that intake of ginger might help in drastic lowering of blood sugar however more studies needs to carry out to proper understanding of ginger relationship with blood sugar.

In one of the studies carried out in 2015 helps in reducing the blood sugar of 42 participants with type II diabetes. The daily consumption of 2gm ginger powder reduced blood sugar by 12%.

Cardiovascular Diseases

Though the study being small which shows very encouraging results. The daily consumption of 2 grams of ginger powder is successful in reducing the oxidised lipoproteins by 23% which is the major risk factor for CVD.

These are the preliminary studies which are very impressive however, further studies need to be carried out for better understanding the properties of ginger in reference of heart.

Cold Flu

Traditionally ginger have been used as remedies against cold flu and throat infection. The daily consumption of ginger may prevent cold flu and prevent any sort of throat infections such as sore throat and throat irritation. It is often observed to provide relief during similar ailments and provide some relief.

Though it has been established as very effective against cold flu and throat infections however very limited medical evidences supports these claims. It may be more effective consumed in association with cold flu medications.

LDL

It is observed that the consumption of ginger regularly may help in reducing the LDL, the bad cholesterols which affects the functioning of the heart. 

In a study where 85 individuals were given 3 grams of ginger powder for 45 days. The results obtained were very impressive as it significantly reduced the all the LDL markers. These initial studies proven to be very successful however, more studies need to be carried out.

Nausea and Vomiting Caused by Cancer Therapy

The use of ginger against nausea and vomiting caused by antiviral therapy and other ailments is very impressive however, the standalone use of ginger against the nausea caused after cancer therapy doesn’t provide any relief against nausea and vomiting.

Though the consumption of ginger along with nausea and vomiting reducing medications helps in reducing the effects of caused by therapy. It suggests that ginger may be very effective when consumed along with medications rather than standalone use.

Side Effects

Although it helps against number of ailments it may have some side effects which we need to be aware of. It always better to have medical experts’ opinion before using of ginger against such ailments.

  • Hormonal imbalance in foetus
  • Miscarriages
  • Bleeding disorders
  • Heart Disease
  • Diabetes

Summary

The key takeaway here from this is ginger might help in some of the disorders however it may have some severe side effects. It always advisable to take medical opinion before inclusion of ginger in our daily diet. “Eat Healthy Stay Healthy”.