Guest Blog Post: Health Benefits of Ginger
Here’s one in a series of post’s we’ll be doing on the health benefits of the ingredients we use in Fire Cider®. Let’s start with one of my favorites, GINGER!
This guest Blog post is by David Novak from Healthline.com:
Ginger is widely used in different culinary cuisines and has numerous therapeutic health qualities. It is a rhizome, or mass of roots, from the plant Zingiber officinale, and with the numerous members of this plant family, all have their own uses as a delicacy, medicine and spice. Ginger can be served in solid form as fresh, dried or powdered, and in liquid form such as juice, extract or oil. It has been found to be highly effective in fighting a variety of diseases and conditions because of its ability to relieve excessive inflammation, which is a notable underlying cause of many illnesses. Here are several areas where ginger has been shown to be very effective:
Ginger has been known to have tremendous anti-inflammatory effects. It contains gingerols, which is a potent anti-inflammatory compound that is believed to reduce pain for people who have arthritis. Ginger also aids in improving the mobility of arthritic patients, particularly those who are suffering from osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis.
In studies conducted in patients who responded to conventional drugs and those who didn’t, researchers found that 75-percent of arthritis patients and 100 percent of patients suffering with muscular discomfort experienced relief from swelling and pain. Other neurodegenerative diseases can also be aided by ginger’s ability to inhibit the production of nitrous oxide and proinflammatory cytokines.
Gingerols, which is the main active component in ginger and responsible for its distinctive taste, can also help in inhibiting the growth of cancer cells. In a colorectal cancer research study, mice were injected with cancer cells, and only 4 tumors were found in those treated with gingerol, compared to the 13 tumors found on those without gingerol. An ovarian cancer study and ginger also produced positive results. The cancer cells were exposed to a ginger powder solution, and these cells either died due to apoptosis, in which they commit suicide, or autophagy, where they digested or attack themselves. According to the researchers from the University of Michigan Comprehensive Cancer Center, the ginger solution can also prevent the cancer cells from building up a resistance when it comes to cancer treatment.
Ginger also has the innate ability to ease gastric distress and it does more than simply relieving pain. In a study conducted for those suffering from dyspepsia, they were instructed to take ginger capsules, and the study found that ginger was indeed helpful in stimulating the emptying of the stomach without any negative effects. Ginger contains an antispasmodic agent that has been shown to be very beneficial for the digestive tract. It also inhibits H. Pylori, which is a bacterium found in the stomach that causes several types of stomach ulcers.
Ginger has been found effective in preventing toxic effects from a wide array of substances. This includes doxorubicin and excitotoxin monosodium glutamate or MSG. The cancer doxorubicin has been found damaging to the kidneys, however, ginger is found effective in alleviating it. MSG has been widely used as a food additive and although its effects are still controversial, it has been approved by the Food and Drug Administration or FDA. Ginger extract has been shown effective in protecting the nerves against damage caused by MSG.
Nausea, vomiting and motion sickness
Ginger has been found effective in nausea in all kinds of situations. It has been long used for sea sickness and motion sickness prevention. Ginger can also be used effectively for pregnant women, even for those who suffer from hyperemesis gravidarum, which is an acute form of nausea and vomiting that often requires hospitalization. In a randomized controlled trial published in 2005 by Obstetrics and Gynecology, ginger was found effective in relieving the severity of nausea and vomiting during pregnancy. The review also confirmed that ginger has no side effects or adverse effect during and after pregnancy.
Based on a study conducted in young women suffering from menstrual pain, ginger has been found as effective as other nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs such as Ponstel and ibuprofen. It is one of the safest alternative medicines you can use instead of over-the-counter drugs.
Immune boosting action
Ginger has been found very effective in promoting healthy sweating, which can be helpful for colds and flu. It assists in detoxification by removing toxins thru sweat glands. According to German researchers, sweat carries a potent germ-fighting agent that aids in fighting off infections.
David Novak’s is a nationally syndicated columnist, and his byline has appeared in newspapers and magazines around the world. He’s an avid health enthusiast, and frequently is featured in regional and national health publications. He is also a weekly writer for Healthline. To visit his other features, visit http://www.healthline.com/.