9 Incredible Uses and Health Benefits of Ginger - From Digestion to Flu and Cold

   |  Updated: October 24, 2017 21:55 IST

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9 Incredible Uses and Health Benefits of Ginger - From Digestion to Flu and Cold
Highlights
  • Ginger is a herb native to India and China known as Zingiber officinale
  • Often referred to as a root, ginger is actually an underground stem
  • Ginger is replete with multiple medicinal properties and benefits
You may have heard your parents and grandmothers recommending a cup of ginger tea for so many of your health woes, be it an upset tummy, joint pain, nausea or cold and flu, and they may not be entirely wrong in showing such strong faith in the tuber and the umpteen benefits of ginger. Ginger is a perennial herb native to China and India known as Zingiber officinale. Often referred to as a root, ginger is actually a stem which grows underground. Indians have particularly used ginger in their culinary preparations for about 4000 years, but that’s not all. Ginger is also replete with multiple medicinal properties and health benefits. According to Ayurveda especially, the multiple uses of ginger, makes the tuber on of the most significant herbs in the ancient practice. 
 
ginger

Often referred to as a root, ginger is actually a stem which grows underground.


According to the book Healing Foods by DK Publishing, its active constituent “Gingerol has analgesic, sedative, antipyretic and antibacterial effects, another component zingerone is an antioxidant.”  
 

Uses and Health Benefits of Ginger


Here are some amazing ginger benefits you may not have known about:

1.Settles Upset Stomach and Aids Digestion


The pungent root is known for its ability  to settle an upset stomach. Ginger can work wonders for digestive health. The book Healing Foods says that ginger “protects and heals the gut, hastens the movement of food through the gastrointestinal tract, and reduces wind, bloating and cramps. It also awakens the taste buds, and gets digestive juices flowing.” 

According to The Complete Book of Ayurvedic Home Remedies by Dr. Vasant Lad, “The first key to prevention of indigestion is to enhance the digestive fire. One of the best herbs to kindle agni is ginger. Before each meal, chop or grate a little fresh ginger, add a few drops of lime juice and a pinch of salt, and chew it up."

Dr. Ashutosh Gautam, Clinical Operations and Coordination Manager, Baidyanath, and Ayurvedic expert, says, “Ginger is a great digestive tonic, which improves gastric motility. So it alleviates constipation, vomiting, acidity, and protects gastric lining against acidity.” 

(Also Read: 7 Miraculous Benefits of Ginger Juice: From Better Digestion to Beautiful Hair​)
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One of the best Ginger benefits is a great digestive tonic abilities which improves gastric motility.

2.Fights Inflammation


According to the book Healing Foods by DK Publishing, “Its volatile oils have anti-inflammatory properties similar to those of  NSAIDs (non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs), which makes it an excellent remedy for flu, headaches and menstrual pains. It can also lower medication intake in osteoarthritis.” 

(Also Read: Why You Should Have a Glass of Ginger Water Every Day​)
fever

The incredible benefits of Ginger makes for an excellent remedy for flu

 

3.Traditional Remedy for Cold


As per Ayurveda, one of the best remedies for cold is ginger. Dr. Vasant Lad in his book mentions a couple of effective remedies like 
“combining  ginger (1 part), cinnamon (1 part) and lemon grass (2 parts). Steep 1 tsp of the formula for about 10 mins in 1 cup of hot water, strain it and add honey if you like. This tea  will help reduce symptoms of cold.”

Another remedy you can try is ginger cinnamon cardamom tea. Mix ginger (2 parts), cinnamon (3 parts), cardamom (just a pinch) and add honey for taste if you like. 

(Also Read: Grocery Shopping Guide: How to Buy and Store Ginger)
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As per Ayurveda, one of the best benefits of ginger is its ability to combat cold. 

 

4. Alleviates Nausea


The active compounds in ginger can ease morning sickness and nausea caused by cancer chemotherapy and after surgery, according to the book, Healing Foods.  
car sickness motion sickness

The active compounds in ginger can ease morning sickness, motion sickness and nausea

 

5. Can Treat Loss of Appetite


According to Dr. Ashutosh Gautam, chewing some ginger with lemon and black salt may help recover lost appetite. 
anorexia

The incredible ginger benefits  can also treat loss of appetite 

 

6. Can Reduce Menstrual Pain


Ladies take note! Intake of ginger powder may help significantly to reduce menstrual cramps, also called dysmenorrhea. Ginger is one of the traditional remedies used to alleviate menstrual pain. You can also take a hot cup of ginger tea to bring relief from the pain. 
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Intake of ginger powder may help significantly to reduce menstrual cramps

 

7. May Lower Cholesterol Levels


Experts have also linked ginger to lower levels of Low Density Lipoproteins  or "bad" cholesterol, which are known to increase risk of heart disease.
cholesterol

Experts have also linked the benefits of ginger to lower levels of bad cholesterol

 

8. Can Help Fight Infections


Gingerol, the bioactive compound in fresh ginger, can help lower the risk of infections. According to the book Healing Foods, “its active constituent gingerol has analgesic, sedative, antipyretic and antibacterial effects.” Ginger extract has abilities to inhibit the growth of different types of bacteria, especially oral bacteria linked to inflammatory diseases in the gums, such as gingivitis and periodontitis.
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Ginger extract can inhibit the growth of different types of bacteria, especially oral bacteria

 

9. Eases Joint Pain


According to Dr. Ashutosh Gautam, the high anti inflammatory properties of ginger can ease joint pain to a great extent. “It can be used in food, as  medicine , dry powder or fresh root slices.” 
joint pain 625

High anti inflammatory can ease joint pain, making it one of the best benefits of ginger 



One little stem and so many benefits! What are you waiting for? Load up on the many medicinal and healing benefits of ginger right away.  
 

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