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This morning, as I got back from jogging, I proceeded to make tea (Lipton) which I usually take black. A friend approached and asked why and I told her certain benefits of tea. She had a problem with drinking bitter stuff of course and I tried to give her alternatives. I offered her options like adding lemon or lime juice, honey and ginger to the tea. On hearing ginger, she made a face which prompted this article.
Do you think Ginger is that bad?
Let us see…
Ginger is a popular ingredient in cooking. It has also been used for thousands of years for medicinal purposes.
Possible health benefits include relieving nausea, loss of appetite, motion sickness, and pain.
Gingerol is the main bioactive compound in ginger, responsible for much of its medicinal properties. It has powerful anti-inflammatory and antioxidant effects.
The root or underground stem (rhizome) of the ginger plant can be consumed fresh, powdered, dried as a spice, in oil form, or as juice. Ginger is part of the Zingiberaceae family, alongside cardamom and turmeric. It is commonly produced in India, Jamaica, Fiji, Indonesia, and Australia.
It is available fresh and dried, as ginger extract and ginger oil, and in tinctures, capsules, and lozenges. Foods that contain ginger include gingerbread, cookies, ginger snaps, ginger ale, and a wide variety of savory recipes.
The nutritional contents of ginger include:
In 100 grams (g) of a fresh ginger root, there are:
Fresh or dried ginger can be used to flavor foods and drinks without adding unnecessary salt or sugar. Since it is often consumed in such small amounts, ginger does not add significant quantities of calories, carbohydrate, protein, or fiber.
Proven health benefits of Ginger include:
Eases Menstrual Pain – Unfortunately, adverse side effects like pain, period cramps (dysmenorrhea) and headaches are commonly associated with menstruation for many women. While some turn to over-the-counter medications to provide symptom relief, natural remedies like ginger can be just as useful at easing menstrual pain.
A study published in the Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine showed that ginger reduces menstrual pain as effectively as medications like ibuprofen and mefenamic acid. Another study in 2009 had similar findings, reporting that ginger reduces both the intensity and duration of pain.
Helps Treat Nausea – Used historically as a natural remedy for seasickness and morning sickness, ginger is perhaps most well-known for its ability to treat nausea and vomiting. One review looked at the results of 12 studies comprised of 1,278 pregnant women and found that ginger was effective at decreasing symptoms of nausea with minimal risk of side effects. Plus, another study from the University of Rochester Medical Center showed that ginger helped reduce nausea severity in patients receiving chemotherapy.
Digestive Tract Protection – Ginger has also been historically used for flatulence, constipation, bloating, and other digestive complaints. In addition to these gastro-protective effects, researchers have found ginger to be effective for stress-related ulcers.
Regulating Blood Sugar – Ginger has repeatedly demonstrated powerful blood sugar balancing effects. It acts on insulin release and sensitivity and supports the metabolism of carbohydrates and lipids. In one study, insulin levels noticeably lowered with ginger supplementation. In addition to its effectiveness as a blood sugar stabilizer, ginger has also demonstrated powerful protective effects against diabetic kidney, eye and liver complications.
Tea with ginger slices.
The United States (U.S.) Food and Drug Administration (FDA) consider ginger to be a food additive that is “generally recognized as safe.”
Natural ginger will cause little or no known side effects for most people. In some, however, a high intake may worsen symptoms of acid reflux, irritate the mouth, and cause diarrhea. Taking ginger as capsules may help reduce the risk of heartburn.
The effectiveness and side effects from ginger supplements will vary by brand and formulation, but people are advised not to take more than 4 g of dried ginger a day, or 1 g during pregnancy, including food sources. Scientists urge caution when using supplements, as these are not standardized.
Anyone who is pregnant, or who has gallstones, diabetes, or a blood clotting disorder should discuss first with their doctor whether to increase their intake of ginger. Ginger supplements should not be used with aspirin or other blood-thinning medications.
Scientists note that many of the compounds in ginger have not been fully investigated, and not all of the claims for ginger have been supported by research. However, many of those that have been studied appear to show promise for medicinal purposes.
It is better to seek dietary sources of nutrients rather than supplements and to consume them as part of an overall diet, rather than focusing on one item.
Well, I will agree it has its residual smell that may come off as unpleasant but then, that is nothing. If you’re looking for a fast way to burn belly fat, ginger is one cheap answer to your problems.
Ezeani Uchechukwu, AKA Saddam Ninhor, currently undergoing B. TECH programme in Microbiology at Federal University of Technology, Owerri. Despite his science roots, he loves to dabble with words in short stories, poems and also shares knowledge of household and relationship efficiency.
He sets simple goals, working at his own pace to achieve them. This is greatly inspired by the words of Zig Ziglar; "go as far as you can see, when you get there, you will see further."
Social media: Saddam Ninhor(Facebook).