Originally from Southeast Asia, ginger is defined as a flowering plant. It is one of the world’s healthiest (and tastiest) spices.
Turmeric, cardamom, and galangal are near relatives of this plant, which is a member of the Zingiberaceae family.
Commonly used as a spice is the rhizome, which is the underground portion of the stem. Ginger root or just ginger are common names for it.
Fresh, dried, powdered, oil, juice, and other forms of ginger can all be used. It appears in recipes quite frequently. It is occasionally included in cosmetics and processed meals.
Below are a few health benefits of ginger that is supported by scientific research.
- HAS STRONG MEDICINAL EFFECTS AND CONTAINS GINGEROL
Ginger has been used for a very long time in both conventional and alternative medicine. It has been used, among other things, to help with digestion, lessen motion sickness, and fight the flu and the common cold.
The natural oils in ginger, of which gingerol is the most significant, are what give it its distinct aroma and flavour. The primary bioactive ingredient in ginger is gingerol. It is largely to blame for ginger’s therapeutic qualities.
Research has shown that gingerol has potent anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties. For instance, it might assist in lowering oxidative stress, which is brought on by the body having too many free radicals.
- MAY HELP WITH WEIGHT LOSS
Ginger may play a role in weight loss, according to studies conducted on humans and animals.
A 2019 literature review concluded that ginger supplementation significantly reduced body weight, the waist-hip ratio, and the hip ratio in people with overweight or obesity
A 2016 study of 80 women with obesity found that ginger could also help reduce body mass index (BMI) and blood insulin levels. High blood insulin levels are associated with obesity.
- CAN HELP WITH OSTEOARTHRITIS
Osteoarthritis (OA) is a widespread medical condition.
It involves the deterioration of the joints in the body, resulting in symptoms including stiffness and discomfort in the joints.
According to one literature review, persons who used ginger to treat their OA experienced notable decreases in pain and impairment
There were only a few minor negative effects, such a dislike of the flavour of ginger. However, stomach discomfort and the taste of ginger still led to the withdrawal of roughly 22% of the study subjects. Study participants received between 500 milligrams (mg) and 1 gram of ginger each day for anywhere from 3 to 12 weeks. A majority of them had been diagnosed with OA of the knee
While these findings are promising, higher-quality studies with larger numbers of study participants are still needed
- MAY HELP LOWER CHOLESTEROL LEVELS
High levels of LDL (bad) cholesterol are linked to an increased risk of heart disease.
The foods you eat can have a strong influence on LDL levels.
In a 2018 study of 60 people with hyperlipidemia, the 30 people who received 5 grams of ginger-pasted powder each day saw their LDL (bad) cholesterol levels drop by 17.4% over a 3-month period
While the drop in LDL is impressive, it’s important to consider that study participants received very high doses of ginger.
Many cited a bad taste in the mouth as their reason for dropping out of an OA study where they received doses of 500 mg–1 gram of ginger
The doses taken during the hyperlipidemia study are 5–10 times higher. It’s likely that most people may have difficulty taking a 5-gram dose for long enough to see results.
In an older study from 2008, people who received 3 grams of ginger powder (in capsule form) each day also saw significant reductions in most cholesterol markers. Their LDL (bad) cholesterol levels dropped by 10% over 45 days
These findings are supported by a study in rats with hypothyroidism or diabetes. Ginger extract lowered LDL (bad) cholesterol to a similar extent as the cholesterol-lowering drug atorvastatin
Study subjects from all 3 studies also experienced drops in total cholesterol. Participants in the 2008 study, as well as the lab rats, also saw reductions in their blood triglycerides
- IMPROVES BRAIN FUNCTION AND PROTECTS AGAINST ALZHEIMER’S DISEASE
Chronic inflammation and oxidative stress both hasten the ageing process.
They are thought to be one of the primary causes of Alzheimer’s disease and age-related cognitive decline.
According to some animal research, ginger’s bioactive components and antioxidants may be able to reduce brain inflammation.
There is some evidence to support the idea that ginger can directly improve brain function. Daily doses of the ginger extract were shown in a 2012 research of healthy middle-aged women to enhance working memory and reaction time (40Trusted Source).
Additionally, multiple animal studies demonstrate that ginger can help guard against age-related decreases in cognitive performance.
- CAN HELP FIGHT INFECTIONS
Infection risk can be reduced with gingerol.
In fact, ginger extract can stop a variety of bacteria from growing.
It is particularly efficient against the oral germs linked to gingivitis and periodontitis, according to a 2008 study. These two gum conditions are both inflammatory.
The respiratory syncytial virus (RSV), a major cause of respiratory infections, may also be successfully treated with fresh ginger.
The rich nutritional content and bioactive components in ginger have profound advantages for both your body and mind. One of the extremely few superfoods that is genuinely deserving of the term.
Various illnesses and symptoms, including irregular periods, can be helped by ginger. Consuming raw ginger regularly can help control your menstrual cycle. Gingerol, which is present in ginger, reduces inflammatory responses in the body. It promotes hormonal equilibrium and aids in uterine muscle contraction.
We’ll discuss helpful treatments for irregular periods in our upcoming publication.