Do you enjoy eating ginger? Fresh ginger is great for flavoring all sorts of dishes, especially asian inspired recipes, it packs a powerful and nutritious punch. Many people also enjoy drinking ginger tea, and then there’s the ever popular gingerbread man, made with ground or powdered ginger.
Have you ever wondered about the benefits of eating ginger - is it just to add flavor, or can eating ginger actually impact your health and wellbeing? Let’s find out.
Ginger is a part of the Zingiberaceae family related to galangal, cardamom, and turmeric. Based on science, ginger is among the most delicious and healthiest spices. Often called “ginger root” because the part that we eat acts like the root of the plant and grows underground, ginger is actually technically a rhizome.
It’s this rhizome of the ginger plant that we harvest and then turn into all sorts of wonderful creations. There are several ways of using ginger roots/rhizomes. It can be used fresh or the fresh rhizome can be dried, powdered or used as a juice or oil.
Recently, ginger has even been known to be added to cosmetic and hair care products. Below are some of the benefits of eating ginger:
1. Lowers the Severity of Osteoarthritis
Osteoarthritis is a common health issue that occurs when your joints start to degenerate - this usually happens as we age or can be from overuse. The main symptoms of osteoarthritis are stiffness and joint pain.
Some proven studies show that ginger is helpful in lowering the chances of a disability and in reducing pain. Osteoarthritis patients should combine ginger with sesame oil, cinnamon, and mastic to enhance its efficiency.
2. Assist in Weight Loss
According to scientific studies, ginger plays a vital role in weight loss. If you're obese, you should increase ginger consumption to reduce the waist-hip ratio and body weight. Ginger reduces blood insulin levels and BMI in overweight people.
Managing your weight is crucial because it lowers the risk of developing other health issues, such as type II diabetes, cardiovascular diseases, and stroke. The ability of ginger to control weight comes as a result of a reduced rate of inflammation and burning calories.
3. Treats Nausea
Ginger is an effective remedy for people struggling with different forms of nausea. It also lowers the rate of vomiting if you have undergone a certain surgery. Some studies show that ginger can help chemotherapy-related nausea.
Therefore, if you're a cancer patient and you're going for chemotherapy sessions, you should consume ginger to help lessen the nauseating side effects of your treatment. In addition, ginger can help manage morning sickness, which is a form of pregnancy-related nausea. If you're pregnant, consult a medical practitioner before consuming ginger.
4. Contains Medicinal Properties
Traditionally, ginger was used to reduce nausea, aid digestion, and fight the common cold and flu. Gingerol is an essential component of ginger and comprises a unique flavor and fragrance. Scientifically, gingerol is the major bioactive compound. It plays a significant role when it comes to medicinal properties.
According to research, gingerol is a great source of antioxidants and anti-inflammatory properties. Free radicals in your body can cause oxidative stress; therefore, you should opt for ginger to control the situation.
5. Lowers the Risk of Diabetes & Heart Problems
Studies show that ginger contains great anti-diabetic properties. If you’re struggling with type II diabetes, consume ginger to lower your blood sugar level. It improves your hemoglobin in the blood, thus controlling your blood sugar levels.
In addition, consuming ginger reduces Malondialdehyde(MDA) and Apolipoprotein B. This is among the byproducts of oxidative stress. High MDA and ApoB increase your risk of developing heart disease.
There’s ongoing research to ascertain ginger’s efficiency in reducing HbA1c in individuals who have type II diabetes.
6. Reduces Menstrual Pain
Women go through dysmenorrhea, which is a pain that occurs during the menstrual cycle. Traditionally, most people used ginger to control the menstrual pain. Some studies show that ginger is more effective than some drugs and a placebo.
7. Treats Chronic Indigestion
Indigestion causes discomfort and recurrent pain in the upper abdomen. Mostly, indigestion occurs when your body delays the rate of emptying the stomach. Ginger catalyzes the process of emptying the stomach, thus lowering the risks of chronic indigestion. Recently, people suffering from functional dyspepsia are given either placebo or ginger capsules.
8. Lower the Risk and Severity of Cancer
Ginger is used as a natural remedy for different types of cancer. Gingerol contains anti-cancer properties. Research shows that these components are high in raw ginger. For instance, people who have colorectal cancer should consume ginger to reduce inflammation in the colon.
Other studies show that ginger is an effective home remedy for certain gastrointestinal cancers like liver cancers and pancreatic cancer.
9. Keep Your Brain Healthy
Chronic inflammation and oxidative stress can catalyze the aging process. You’ll, therefore, experience age-related cognitive decline. Ginger contains bioactive and antioxidants compounds that help in reducing inflammatory responses in your brain.
There are so many advantages of eating ginger everyday, these are just some of the many good reasons to include more ginger in your diet.
It’s easy to grow at home, healthy and delicious! So, why wouldn’t you increase your ginger intake? Your taste buds and your body will thank you for it!