Benefits of ginger root has been in culinary and medicinal use since ancient times. It is used for its spicy, pungent and zesty flavor in dishes. The numerous health benefits of ginger qualifies it to be called a super food.
Benefits of Ginger
- Relieves gastrointestinal distress: Ginger relaxes and soothes the intestinal tract.Like cardamom, it also helps in eliminating intestinal gas. Recent researches have revealed that Ginger is far better than Dramamine in prevention of symptoms of motion and sea sickness. These symptoms include dizziness, cold sweat, nausea and vomiting
- Helpful during pregnancy: Women who suffer from severe nausea and vomiting during the early phases of pregnancy benefits from ginger. A study published in Obstetrics and Gynecology journal of 2005 has confirmed the effectiveness and benefits of ginger in relieving the severity of nausea and vomiting during pregnancy. Unlike other anti-vomiting medications, ginger does not have any side effects on the growing fetus.
- Anti–inflammatory effects : 6-gingerol, an active phenolic compound present in it attributes strong anti–inflammatory and pain reducing benefits of ginger. A study published in a recent issue of Osteoarthritis Cartilage suggested using fresh ginger in daily food preparations to protect against ageing problems of knee. People suffering from arthritis should spice up their food with a dash of ginger to avail the pain relieving benefits of ginger.
- Protects against cancer: Gingerol, an active component in ginger was found to have anti-inflammatory and anti-tumor effects on cells.
Colon and rectal cancers– A study presented at Phoenix in a cancer prevention researchers meeting suggested that Gingerol possessed chemo preventive properties for colorectal cancers. Hence they may be capable of inhibiting the growth of colorectal cancer cells in humans.
Ovarian cancer – Gingerol were found to have some what same action against the ovarian cancer cells. Gingerol was found to have an ability to induce apoptosis (death of cells) and auto-phagocytosis (ability of self digestion of cells) in the ovarian cancer cells.
- Boosts immunity: A lesser known benefit of ginger is that it aids in increasing the production of both sweat and Dermicidin (a compound produced by the sweat glands). Dermicidin has antimicrobial, anti bacterial and anti fungal actions. It is secreted on the skin surface along with sweat and provides protections against these organisms.
- Improves blood circulation – The chromium, zinc and magnesium aid in better blood flow in the blood vessels.
- Helpful in respiratory problems – Ginger is a natural expectorant. Its consumption during respiratory infections helps in loosening and removal of the mucus and phlegm.
- Warming effects: Consumption of ginger can keep you warm during the cold days. It is also beneficial during cough and cold infections.
How to consume Ginger?
Gingerol is highly concentrated in ginger and hence you do not need to consume large amount to avail its benefits. Consumption of small quantity can also provide us with the health related benefit.
- Ginger tea – Just add a slice of about 1 inch to your black tea or milk tea. You can also crush this slice and add. This will help you settle down during episodes of vomiting and nausea.
- Add to your food – People who suffer from arthritis or are prone to arthritis, and those who suffer from pain and inflammation can start adding a small slice to their dishes on a daily basis to avail the anti-inflammatory benefits of ginger.
- Ginger churn – Grate ginger, add salt, a little sugar and lemon juice and let it sun dry for a few days. This can be preserved for a long period and can be used during travelling to get rid of the symptoms of sea sickness and motion sickness.
How much do I need to consume to avail the benefits of ginger ?
Although the quantity is not a matter of consideration, but in cases of severe or acute inflammation, increase the quantity of consumption of ginger for better results. Looking at the various benefits of ginger, you can rightly call it a super food.
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