While there are many herbs and spices that have been used since centuries for natural abilities to heal, ginger is one spice that is uniquely versatile and has been used in many cuisines from different cultures apart from its medical and health benefits. It is why ginger is often referred to as a ‘wonder spice’ with both culinary and medical upsides.
What makes ginger a ‘wonder spice’?
Though the actual origin of ginger is not known exactly, it is presumed that it was first used in India and South of China. It then travelled the world making its impact and adopted everywhere from Greece to Spain and Jamaica and also Florida.
Ginger has a powerful taste that works very well with a sweetener and because ginger works great in any sweet dish, it is often found in many of our favourites like cookies, gingerbread and even cakes. Ginger has a host of things like bisabolene, borneol, camphene, citral, cineole, gingerol, inositol, volatile oils, PABA, phellandrene, acrid resin, numerous B vitamins, zingiberene and zingerone. All through its days of evolution, it has been extensively used for the treatment of to treat nausea, colitis, diverticulosis, ingestion, tongue paralysis, colon circulation and its stimulation, menstrual cramps, morning sickness and even hot flashes. It is widely used in present days also to treat sore throats and common colds.
Though ginger is very spicy on the tongue, it is an excellent remedy for indigestion and is a safe and effective spice. There are many episodes that confirm its effectiveness against motion sickness as well.
Ginger is used and recommended to promote blood circulation. During colds, we are recommended t drink ginger tea. It is also claimed that ginger cleanses the blood and gives the body a vigorous shake to get started.
The reasons why it is considered a blessing for human health
Ginger is one of the healthiest and the most widely used spice around the globe. Its numerous nutrients and bioactive compounds do loads of good for the human body.
- It is very effective in reducing muscular pains and soreness
People who are involved with exercises and sports, tend to get a lot of muscular and joint pains. Though it works slowly, it has a great impact on reducing these types of muscular pains and sores, if taken regularly. It can all be attributed to its anti-inflammatory properties.
- It is a great aid in lowering blood pressure
High blood pressure or hypertension is left untreated and unattended can lead to severe damage to our eyes, heart, brain, kidneys and arteries. Although medication is often prescribed, how about curing all of it naturally.
Ginger is such a case acts to expand the blood vessels and thereby increasing the blood circulation in our body, which in turn reduces the overall pressure. The goodness of potassium in ginger helps in lowering blood pressure.
- It has anti-bacterial properties
There are many drug-resistant bacteria in clinical studies. Ginger acts as an effective anti-bacterial for them. These anti-bacterial properties of ginger work great for oral health, inhibiting the unseen growth of pathogens that leads to inflammation of the gums.
- Provides help with osteoarthritis
Osteoarthritis is not an uncommon health hazard. The joints of the body start to degenerate causing stiffness and immense joint pains. Studies conducted on people with osteoarthritis have shown that ginger has helped them in reducing pain and stiffness more than medicines.
When ginger is combined with cinnamon, mastic and sesame oil, it can be very effective in reducing pain and stiffness in people suffering from osteoarthritis.
- Provides great relief against menstrual pains
Menstrual pain is the pain that a woman experiences during her menstrual cycles. In order to treat this pain, ginger has been used since ages by women all around the world. The best way to make its impact more effective is to start having ginger at the start of the cycle.
Now that we know some of the many health benefits of using ginger let’s discover the best possible ways to use it for maximum advantage:
Ginger needs no special means and ways to incorporate it into our daily routine. Apart from being spicy, it tastes good too. There are numerous ways of using it to the best of our advantage.
- As a tea: As a tea, you can either add grounded fresh ginger to our regular tea or even buy ready to drink ginger tea bags from the market. It is best enjoyed if you have it after your meals.
- As ginger root: It is the most common and widely used way to have ginger. Ground them and add to your dink, slice them up and add in your favourite dish or even mince them and add to smoothies r even just chew them up. Ginger juicer dried ginger is considered as a great mid-day snack option.
- As oil: Ginger oil is used in many message forms. Either apply topically or administered orally, ginger oil is often used to treat pains and sores.
- Capsules: To make life easier and for them who don’t like its spicy and pungent taste, capsules are a great way t supplement it in our diet.
- Chews: These are candies and are made a little mild in taste. Always check before you buy these as many of them might have additives and other things like corn syrups to make things worse.
This article has been contributed by Dietitian Sheela Seharawat. She is a successful entrepreneur and a founder & chief mentor of Diet Clinic Health Care Pvt. Ltd.