Immunity is one of our key concerns, especially during the time of weather change. As the temperature changes significantly, our immune health can be compromised leading to chest infection, sore throat, cold, cough and flu-like diseases. Luckily, immunity can be boosted naturally with the help of simple ingredients found in our kitchen! Take ginger for instance - it can be an effective ingredient to keep infections at bay. It has been known for its healing properties since times immemorial, and there are so many ways we can add it to our diet for maximum benefits.
Is Ginger Good For Immunity?
According to the book 'Healing Foods' by DK, "The volatile oils found in ginger 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." Celebrity nutritionist Rujuta Diwekar also stated in her recent video, "It has many bioactive molecules, and they play a range of roles. It has high antioxidant value, and acts as an analgesic, provides pain relief."
How To Consume Ginger For Immunity
There are so many different ways that ginger can be added to the diet. Some are the ones we already knew or have been using since quite some time. Others are a little offbeat and can be tried to increase our ginger intake and load up on immunity.
1. Add It To Soups Or Tea
Ginger has a powerful flavour and can amp up practically every dish, from tea to soup and more. Use ginger extract or ginger juice and add it to your usual masala tea recipe. You will see the difference in the flavour and your healthy. Click here for a ginger-cinnamon tea recipe you can make. You can also make a rich soup to soothe your throat. Find the recipe for carrot ginger-soup here.
(Also Read: Here Are 7 Health Benefits Of Drinking Ginger Tea)
Carrot ginger soup is an excellent way to consume nutritious ginger. Image Credit: iStock
2. Use It To Flavour Gravies
This is a hack that we all are well-aware of. A sliver of ginger or a dash of ginger paste can make all the difference to the gravy's taste and also add up to its health quotient. There are also recipes like Paneer Adraki or Mutton Ginger wherein ginger is the star ingredient and the primary flavouring agent. Click here for mutton ginger recipe.
3. Drink It Up
The flavours of ginger pair well with all kinds of drinks, juices and coolers. Prepare a litchi-ginger cooler with this miracle herb, click here for the recipe. You could also prepare a detox juice with ginger, lemon juice and orange juice mixed together. If you like to keep your drinks fizzy, here's how you can make ginger ale at home. Click here for the recipe.
4. As A Garnish On Salads Or Chaat
While coriander leaves or cream are commonly used to garnish dishes, where did the humble ginger disappear? Thinly sliced ginger can make an excellent garnish for your gravies or dry vegetable preparations while also enhancing the immunity-boosting properties. You can even add raw, chopped ginger to chaats such as bhelpuri, jhalmuri, sprouts and more.
5. Add It To Dips
Ginger is a powerful ingredient, whether you use it in the form of dry ginger powder or the raw form. You can prepare ginger chutney, pickled ginger or even a sweet and sour ginger dip with this versatile condiment. Click here for the sweet and sour ginger dip recipe.
6. Flavour Desserts
A number of traditional winter desserts in India add dry ginger powder to them to enhance the immunity quotient. This includes recipes like panjiri, laddoo, chikki and more. You can also make ginger the showstopper in desserts such as ginger cookies. Click here for ginger cookies recipe.
Do not go overboard in consuming ginger and keep its quantity in moderation while making these dishes. Remember, excess of anything is not recommended. Always consult a qualified nutritionist or dietitian before making any major changes to your diet. Stay healthy, stay safe!
About Aditi AhujaAditi loves talking to and meeting like-minded foodies (especially the kind who like veg momos). Plus points if you get her bad jokes and sitcom references, or if you recommend a new place to eat at.