Here’s a list of 11 scientifically confirmed ginger properties.
1. Ginger Contains Gingerol, a Substance with Potent Medicinal Properties:
Ginger is a flowering plant from China. It belongs to the Zingiberaceae family and is closely related to turmeric, cardamon and galangal. The rhizome (underground part of the trunk) is the part that is normally used as a spice, usually known as ginger root or simply ginger. Ginger has a long history of use in various forms of traditional / alternative medicine.
It has been used to facilitate digestion, reduce nausea and help fight the flu and the common cold, among others. Ginger is available in different forms: fresh, dried, powdered or as an oil or juice. Sometimes, it is also added to processed foods and cosmetics and is a very common ingredient in recipes. The unique aroma and flavor of ginger come from its natural oils, of which gingerol is the most important. Gingerol is the main bioactive compound of ginger, responsible for many of its medicinal properties. In addition, it has potent anti-inflammatory and antioxidant effects.
In short: ginger, a very popular spice, is rich in gingerol: a substance with potent anti-inflammatory and antioxidant effects.
2. Ginger Can Treat Many Forms of Nausea, Especially Morning Sickness:
Ginger seems to be very effective against nausea: it has a long history of use as a remedy for dizziness and there are indications that it can be as effective as prescription medications.
“Ginger can also calm nausea and vomiting after an operation, and in cancer patients with chemotherapy treatment”.
It can be even more effective in treating morning sickness. According to an analysis of 12 studies that included 1278 pregnant women, 1.1-1.5 grams of ginger can significantly reduce the symptoms of nausea. However, during this study ginger showed no effect on vomiting episodes. Although ginger is not considered dangerous, if you are pregnant, it is recommended that you go to your doctor before taking large amounts. Some believe that ginger in large quantities may increase the risk of abortion, but there are currently no studies to support it.
In summary: 1-1.5 grams of ginger can help prevent various types of nausea: dizziness, nausea caused by chemotherapy, nausea after an operation and morning sickness.
3. Ginger Can Reduce Muscle Aches and Pains:
Ginger has been shown to be effective against muscle pain caused by exercise. In one study, the consumption of 2 grams of ginger per day for a period of 11 days significantly reduced muscle pain in people who developed elbow exercises. Ginger does not have an immediate effect, but it can be effective in reducing the daily progression of muscle pain. It is believed that these effects are due to their anti-inflammatory properties.
In summary: ginger seems to be effective in reducing the daily progression of muscle pain and can reduce muscle discomfort caused by exercise.
4. Anti-Inflammatory Effects Can Improve Osteoarthritis:
Osteoarthritis is a common health problem that involves the degeneration of the joints of the body, causing pain and joint numbness. In a controlled trial of 247 people with osteoarthritis of the knee, those who took ginger extract had less pain and needed less medication. Another study revealed that the combination of ginger, lentisk, cinnamon and sesame oil can reduce pain and numbness in osteoarthritis patients when applied topically.
Summarizing: There are studies that show that ginger is effective in reducing the symptoms of osteoarthritis, a very common health problem.
5. Ginger Can Dramatically Reduce Blood Sugar and Improve Risk Factors for Heart Disease:
This area of research is relatively new, but it is believed that ginger can have potent antidiabetic properties. In a recent study in 2015 conducted on 41 people with type 2 diabetes, 2 grams of ginger powder per day decreased fasting blood sugar by 12%. In addition, HbA1c (an indicator of long-term blood sugar levels) improved, causing a 10% reduction over a 12-week period. There was also a 28% reduction in the ApoB / ApoA-I ratio and a 23% reduction in oxidized lipoprotein indicators: both important risk factors for heart disease. However, this was a very small study. The results are incredibly surprising, but they need to be confirmed in more extensive studies before making any recommendations.
In summary: Ginger has been shown to reduce blood sugar levels and improve several risk factors for heart disease in patients with type 2 diabetes.
6. Ginger Can Help Treat Chronic Indigestion:
Chronic indigestion (dyspepsia) is characterized by recurrent pain and discomfort in the upper stomach. It is believed that delayed gastric emptying is a major factor of indigestion. Interestingly, it has been shown that ginger accelerates gastric emptying in people with this disease. After eating soup, ginger reduces the time the stomach needs to empty from 16 to 12 minutes. In a study of 24 individuals without health problems, 1.2 grams of ginger powder before eating accelerated gastric emptying by 50%.
In summary: Ginger seems to accelerate gastric emptying, which can be beneficial for those suffering from indigestion and stomach upset.
7. Ginger Powder Can Significantly Reduce Menstrual Cramps:
Menstrual pains (dysmenorrhea) are the pains that appear during the menstrual cycle of women. One of the traditional uses of ginger is as a pain reliever, including menstrual pain. In one study, 150 women were ordered to take 1 gram of ginger powder a day during the first 3 days of the menstrual period. As a result, ginger was able to reduce pain as effectively as mefenamic acid and ibuprofen medications.
In summary: Ginger seems to be very effective against menstrual cramps when taken at the beginning of the menstrual period.
8. Ginger Can Reduce Cholesterol Levels:
High levels of LDL lipoproteins (the “bad” cholesterol) are related to a risk of heart disease. The foods you eat can have a big influence on LDL levels. In a 45-day study of 85 people with high cholesterol, 3 grams of ginger caused significant reductions in most cholesterol indicators. This is supported by a study in hypothyroid rats, where ginger extract lowered LDL cholesterol to the same extent as atovastatin, a drug to reduce cholesterol 1. Both studies showed reductions in total cholesterol and blood triglycerides.
Summarizing: There are indications, both in animals and in humans, that ginger can cause significant reductions in LDL cholesterol and triglyceride levels in the blood.
9. Ginger Contains a Substance That Can Help Prevent Cancer:
Cancer is a serious disease that is characterized by uncontrolled growth of abnormal cells. Ginger extract has been studied as an alternative treatment against various types of cancer. The anti-cancer properties are attributed to gingerol 6, a substance found in large quantities in pure ginger. In a study of 30 people, 2 grams of ginger extract per day significantly reduced proinflammatory signaling molecules in the colon. However, a follow-up study in individuals at high risk for colon cancer did not confirm these results. There are indications, although limited, that ginger can be effective against pancreatic, breast and ovarian cancer. More research is necessary
In summary: Ginger contains a substance called gingerol 6 that can have protective effects against cancer. However, further studies are necessary.
10. Ginger Can Improve Brain Function and Protect Against Alzheimer’s Disease:
Oxidative stress and chronic inflammation can accelerate the aging process and are believed to be one of the key factors of Alzheimer’s disease and cognitive impairment associated with age. Some animal studies indicate that antioxidants and bioactive compounds of ginger can prevent inflammatory responses that occur in the brain. There are also indications that ginger can directly improve brain functioning. In a study of 60 middle-aged women, it was shown that ginger extract improved reaction time and functional memory. In addition, there are numerous studies in animals that show that ginger can protect against the deterioration of brain function associated with age.
In summary: Various studies indicate that ginger can protect against brain deterioration caused by age. It can also improve brain functioning in elderly women.
11. The Active Ingredient in Ginger Can Help Fight Infections:
Ginger is one of the few “superfoods” that deserves to be nicknamed with this term. Gingerol, the bioactive substance found in fresh ginger, can help reduce the risk of infections. In fact, ginger extract can prevent the growth of many different types of bacteria. It is very effective against oral bacteria related to inflammatory gum diseases, such as gingivitis and periodontitis. Fresh ginger can also be very effective against the RSV virus, a common cause of respiratory infections.