Daily Dose of Ginger: 1,000mg
Ginger is an herb with green stems that can grow to around a meter high. The rhizomes, or roots, can be used fresh, dried, and powdered, or as a juice for medicine. Native to Southeast Asia, ginger has been used in traditional Asian, Arabic, and Indian cultures as an herbal medicine since ancient times. It spread across Asia and and was exported to ancient Rome from India. It eventually reached the west 2,000 years ago and was imported in a preserved form. Its healing properties come from the volatile oils, such as gingerols, that are responsible for its strong taste. Young ginger plants are used in cooking, whereas the older plants, which have a very strong flavor, are harvested for medicinal use.
Ginger was traditionally used to treat a wide array of ailments. Researchers believe that the chemicals in ginger work primarily in the stomach and intestines, as well as the brain and nervous system. These are the top health benefits of ginger in modern times.
- It is a possible cancer treatment, according to a September 2011 report in “BMC Complementary and Alternative Medicine”. Researchers exposed breast cancer cells to ginger infusion and found that it killed many of the cancer cells and slowed the growth of others.
- Although only preliminary studies have been done, it is highly possible that ginger may protect the liver from liver damage.
- It may decrease cellular swelling by increasing the production of a heat-shock protein.
- It can help ensure a healthy childbirth by increasing uterine contractions.
- Some research shows that ginger can reduce menstrual pain when taken during menstruation and is as effective as ibuprofen or mefenamic acid.
- It can reduce nausea and vomiting during the first 24 hours after surgery when a gram is taken an hour before surgery.
- It can reduce symptoms of dizziness like nausea.
- It can modestly reduce pain in some people with osteoarthritis.
- It may lower blood sugar.
Some side effects of ginger may include bloating, gas, and heartburn. It may interact with some medication, like diabetes medication for example. Ginger may lower blood sugar so people who take diabetes medication may need to get it adjusted by their healthcare provider. It is not advisable to take more than 4g of ginger a day.
- Dabaghzadeh F1, Khalili H, Dashti-Khavidaki S, Abbasian L, Moeinifard A. Ginger for prevention of antiretroviral-induced nausea and vomiting: a randomized clinical trial. Expert Opin Drug Saf. 2014 Jul;13(7):859-66. PMID: 24820858.
- Khayat S1, Kheirkhah M2, Behboodi Moghadam Z3, Fanaei H4, Kasaeian A5, Javadimehr M6. Effect of treatment with ginger on the severity of premenstrual syndrome symptoms. ISRN Obstet Gynecol. 2014 May 4;2014:792708. PMID: 24944825.