5 Go-To Uses For Ginger
Written by: Justin Cowart
Did you know that ginger is one of the healthiest spices on the planet?
Spicy, pungent and aromatic, ginger has added its flavor and benefits to many dishes. With fresh ginger root being available all year round in your local produce section, it’s easy to keep yourself stocked up!
Ginger has been used for thousands of years by Asian, Arabic and Indian healers as both food and medicine as it was used to effectively relieve vomiting and nausea. This root is considered a tropical plant from the same botanical family as cardamom and turmeric.
The ginger that is used is the underground rhizome of the plant itself. It’s colors can range from red to yellow to white (this depends on the variety). The skin of the ginger root can either be thin or thick, depending on when the root was harvested. Younger harvest means a thinner skin while harvesting at a mature age means a thicker skin.
It has been known for a long time that ginger holds medicinal properties, but it wasn’t until the sixteenth-century that it was used in Europe. Ginger was confirmed later by modern research to be an effective agent in a number of ways beyond just nausea; it proved to be effective with motion sickness, morning sickness, postoperative upset and chemotherapy treatments as well.
But ginger doesn’t stop there! Beyond helping an upset stomach, it holds even more properties that can aid in several areas of your everyday life!
5 Go-To Uses For Ginger
1. Gastrointestinal Relief: Recent double-blind studies have confirmed that ginger is extremely effective in the prevention of motion sickness symptoms. Ginger has even been shown to be for more effective than Dramamine (an over-the-counter drug for motion sickness).
2. Relief For Muscle Soreness And Pain: If you suffer from exercise-induced muscle pain, try eating ginger. There was a study conducted that showed how, after consuming 2 grams per day for 11 days, participants were able to effectively reduce muscle pain from elbow exercises. Though it may not have an immediate impact, it is effective in reducing the progression of day-to-day muscle pain.
3. Anti-Inflammatory: Gingerols are highly potent anti-inflammatory compounds found in ginger. It is believed that these substances are responsible for the increase in mobility and reduction of pain for those who suffer from rheumatoid arthritis or osteoarthritis when they have consumed ginger on a regular basis.
4. Lower Blood Sugar Levels: Though this research in somewhat new, it is believed that ginger contains powerful anti-diabetic properties. In a study conducted last year (2015), 41 participants who had type 2 diabetes were given 2 grams of powdered ginger every day, which effectively lowered their fasting blood sugar by 12%.
5. Boosting Immune System: You wouldn’t think it, but ginger can actually help combat a cold or the flu by promoting healthy sweating. Researchers from Germany have found that there is a germ-fighting agent in your sweat that can help fend off infections. The protein has been named dermcidin and it is naturally produced in your sweat glands.
All in all, ginger is a spice that should be included in everyone’s spice cabinet – even if it is just for an upset stomach. You owe it to yourself to look after your health and to try and relieve any kind of pain you may be experiencing. I keep a bag of crystallized ginger in my fridge for when my stomach decides it wants to be a nuisance.
There are many forms ginger that you can buy: crystallized, tea, minced for cooking, or even just raw. Give some a try the next time you feel nauseous and let us know how it goes!
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Justin Cowart is a writer and researcher that loves to learn more about health, life, consciousness and making the world a better place. He loves music, traveling, meditation, video games and spending time with family and friends. He believes in baby steps and lifestyle changes in order to live a full life. In 2014, he lost around 40lbs from baby steps and emotional detoxing.
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