Ginger – The natural remedy for HEALTH
Ginger is not only a common ingredient in cooking but also a “secret” natural remedy for our health. Let’s explore the fantastic applications of ginger in treating various everyday health issues.
Fresh ginger products of Tinimex company (illustration)
1. Improving Digestive System:
Chronic indigestion, characterized by recurring pain and discomfort in the upper abdomen, is believed to be caused by delayed emptying of the stomach. Interestingly, ginger has been proven to accelerate the emptying process of the stomach.
In a small 2011 study, individuals with functional dyspepsia, indigestion without an apparent cause, were given ginger or a placebo. One hour later, they were all given soup. Those who consumed ginger took 12.3 minutes to empty their stomachs, while the placebo group took about 16.1 minutes.
Similar effects were observed in individuals without indigestion. In a 2008 study, healthy participants were given ginger or a placebo. The ginger consumers experienced a significant acceleration in stomach emptying, taking approximately 13.1 minutes compared to 26.7 minutes for the placebo group.
In summary, ginger appears to expedite the stomach emptying process, potentially benefiting those with indigestion and stomach discomfort.
2. Cholesterol reduction:
High levels of LDL cholesterol (commonly known as “bad” cholesterol) are associated with an increased risk of heart disease. The food you eat can significantly impact LDL levels in the blood.
In a 2018 study involving 60 individuals with elevated lipid levels, those who received 5 grams of ginger powder daily experienced a 17.4% reduction in LDL cholesterol over three months. It’s important to note that the participants in this study received a relatively high dose of ginger, which some found unpleasant. In a previous study from 2008, individuals taking 3 grams of ginger powder daily also showed a significant reduction in LDL cholesterol (10%) over 45 days.
In conclusion, there is evidence, both in humans and animals, suggesting that ginger can substantially reduce LDL cholesterol, total cholesterol, and neutral fat levels in the blood.
3. Diabetes prevention:
Although this research field is relatively new, many researchers believe that ginger may possess strong anti-diabetic properties. In a 2015 study with 41 participants diagnosed with type 2 diabetes, consuming 2 grams of ginger powder daily reduced fasting blood sugar by 12% and significantly improved hemoglobin A1c levels over 12 weeks.
Another review in 2019 concluded that ginger significantly reduces HbA1c in individuals with type 2 diabetes. However, it was noted that ginger did not affect fasting blood sugar levels.
In summary, ginger has been demonstrated to lower blood sugar levels and improve various cardiovascular risk factors in individuals with type 2 diabetes.
4. Infection Prevention:
Gingerol, found in ginger, may help reduce the risk of infection. In a 2008 study, gingerol demonstrated effective inhibition of oral bacteria associated with gum inflammation and periodontal disease.
Fresh ginger may also be effective against respiratory syncytial virus (RSV), a common cause of respiratory infections. In summary, ginger may help combat harmful bacteria and viruses, potentially reducing the risk of infection.
5. Natural remedies for joint pain:
Joint inflammation is a common health issue related to the degeneration of joints in the body, leading to symptoms like pain and stiffness. A literature review showed that individuals using ginger for joint inflammation experienced significant pain reduction and improved mobility.
In another study from 2011, a combination of ginger, cinnamon, and sesame oil applied topically helped reduce pain and stiffness in individuals with knee joint inflammation.
To sum up, current studies suggest that ginger can alleviate symptoms of joint degeneration, particularly in knee joints.
6. Reducing Motion Sickness and Morning Sickness:
Ginger seems to be highly effective in preventing nausea. It can help reduce nausea and vomiting in individuals undergoing certain types of surgery. Ginger may be most effective for nausea associated with pregnancy, also known as morning sickness. According to a review of 12 studies involving 1,278 pregnant women, 1.1–1.5 grams of ginger significantly reduced nausea symptoms. However, it was concluded that ginger had no effect on actual vomiting episodes.
In summary, a small amount of 1–1.5 grams of ginger can prevent various forms of nausea, including that associated with chemotherapy, post-surgery nausea, motion sickness, and morning sickness.
7. Supporting Weight Loss:
Ginger may play a role in weight loss, according to studies conducted on both humans and animals. A 2019 literature review concluded that ginger supplementation significantly reduced body weight, waist-hip ratio, and hip ratio in overweight or obese individuals.
A 2016 study on 80 obese women indicated that ginger could also help reduce body mass index (BMI) and blood insulin levels. High blood insulin levels are associated with obesity. Participants in the study received a relatively high daily dose of about 2 grams of ginger powder for 12 weeks.
Another 2019 review of functional foods also concluded that ginger has a positive effect on obesity and weight loss. However, more supplementation studies are needed.
Animal studies support the role of ginger in more robust weight loss effects. Mice given ginger water or ginger extract consistently showed a reduction in body weight, even in cases where they were fed a high-fat diet. The impact on weight loss may be related to specific mechanisms, such as increased calorie burning or reduced inflammation.
In summary, according to studies on both animals and humans, ginger may help improve weight-related measurements such as body weight and waist-hip ratio.