Ginger – Healthy superfoods – by Dr. Nuwanthi Fernando
The Secret Health Benefits of Ginger
by Dr. Mariangel Leota
Ginger is an aromatic plant that has been studied for centuries thanks to its healing effects. It belongs to the family of tubers and is an underground rhizome (root) with a noticeably spicy flavor, which also makes it a good gastronomic condiment.
Since ancient times, ginger was one of the most popular and important plants of the East, especially in the Arab countries, China and India is known as the jewel of the East. The reason for its fame is due to its properties: ginger is a powerful natural anti-inflammatory that helps fight heart, digestive or respiratory diseases.
Currently have discovered more benefits of ginger, such as its antibacterial, analgesic, antipyretic, slimming, anticarcinogenic and able to delay aging.
The mode of consumption is quite versatile and can vary in many ways, it can be added to food, juices can be prepared by combining ginger with other fruits, it is also prepared infusions, it is taken in pills, among other variety of forms of consumption.
Composition of ginger
In a small root like ginger, you can find a large number of benefits and compounds, such as vitamins, minerals, amino acids or essential oils for our health, as well as powerful antioxidants capable of preventing many diseases such as cancer.
The essential oils of ginger, are responsible for giving the characteristic aroma, within the family of the oils it contains, we find some types such as citronellol, lemon, and camphene. Gingerol is another of the essential oils of the plant since it is responsible for giving it that spicy flavor that characterizes it, which is why it is a very famous vegetable.
As for vitamins, this tuber is rich in Vitamins B and C, in addition to being also rich in minerals such as aluminum, phosphorus, calcium, and chromium.
Benefits of ginger:
Improve your digestion
It is very easy to improve your digestion with the consumption of a small portion of ginger, you can eat it or drink an infusion when you feel that you are not digesting food well. The effects are really fast.
The phenolic compounds in ginger are known to help relieve gastrointestinal irritation, stimulate the production of saliva and bile, and suppress gastric contractions as food and fluids move through the gastrointestinal tract. It also has potent effects on the enzyme’s trypsin and pancreatic lipase, and to increase its transit through the digestive tract. This suggests that ginger might help prevent colon cancer and constipation.
Natural treatment is very effective for pregnant women who wish to avoid nausea. You can consume ginger as a chewable pill to naturally cure nausea.
Chewing raw ginger or drinking ginger tea is a common home remedy for nausea. Drinking ginger for motion sickness would help reduce the feeling of nausea, preventing discomfort and vomiting. Its consumption is totally beneficial for pregnant women and has no side effects. They can also be consumed by people with cancer who suffer from nausea after chemotherapy.
The best remedy for the flu
During the flu, the immune system is weakened because vitamin levels are low, the consumption of a small portion of ginger gives a strong boost of Vitamin, strengthening the immune system.
In cold weather, the habit of drinking ginger tea is a good way to stay warm and thus help prevent flu-like states. It is diaphoretic, which means that it promotes sweating, it is special to warm the body, so it also helps to reduce the symptoms of the cold. To make ginger tea at home, cut into slices between 20 and 40 grams of fresh ginger and dip them in a cup of hot water. Add a slice of lemon or a drop of honey to add flavor and additional benefits, such as lemon vitamin C and the antibacterial properties of honey.
The consumption of small portions of gingers is also beneficial to reduce pain. In Chinese culture, ginger was known as a natural analgesic, able to relieve muscle pain, especially muscle pain in the legs, back, and neck.
Special natural anti-inflammatory for arthritis
It has been proven that anti-inflammatory treatment with ginger has reasonably high effectiveness. Its use is recommended in people with cancer because, in addition to having high effectiveness, it has no side effects on chemotherapy.
The anti-inflammatory effect of ginger on inflammations of joints is totally fast and very effective, its consumption is similar to non-steroidal analgesics since it also reduces the synthesis of prostaglandins and leukotrienes. (Proteins that increase inflammation). Ginger is highly recommended in people suffering from arthritis.
A research done by Dr. Krishna C. Srivastava, from Odense University (Denmark) confirmed the analgesic effects of ginger in arthritis. The doctor administered small doses of ginger daily for three months to patients with arthritis and most responded with a decrease in pain, swelling and morning stiffness.
Many researchers have been interested in ginger’s ability to lower cholesterol, function as a natural anticoagulant and reinforce the quality of the arteries. For centuries ginger has been used to protect against cardiovascular diseases, nowadays it is known that many benefits are real and it has been sought to produce heart drugs based on ginger.
Improves absorption of nutrients
When we consume this root, we guarantee a better absorption of essential nutrients in the body. This is because it stimulates the secretion of enzymes from the stomach and pancreatic enzymes. Also, if we have problems with appetite, we can chew some ginger before meals to stimulate it.
Its consumption is totally recommended in people with nutritional problems such as people with cancer, anemia, gastritis or other associated diseases.
It is also advisable to accompany supplements to gain muscle mass, decrease weight, vitamins, minerals or proteins with a portion of ginger. Ginger should be consumed before consuming the supplement.
Special to relieve migraines
Its anti-inflammatory effect and analgesics help to combat migraines. Migraine is a very disabling pain that can cause fatigue, stress, nausea, photosensitivity, among another long list of symptoms that are really uncomfortable.
The ginger phytochemicals are able to reduce the synthesis of prostaglandins and leukotriene, proteins responsible for inflammation and pain.
It is advisable to take a ginger tea at the time of feeling the pain. Its effect may take 30 minutes or 1 hour.
Antistress natural treatment
Thanks to the properties it contains in cineole, ginger helps to reduce levels of anxiety and accumulated stress. This chemical compound called terpene is found in many special medicinal herbs to reduce stress such as chamomile, eucalyptus, and valerian. Its effect is really fast and causes a deep sensation of relaxation.
Cineole is responsible for releasing the amount of serotonin, increasing the feeling of well-being and relaxation, decreasing anxiety and stress. Its use is also recommended for people suffering from depression.
Relieves muscle overload
It is food especially recommended for those who practice sports consistently and high performance. It will help to relax the muscles after putting them under a lot of pressure.
Lifting high amounts of weight can cause great pressure on the muscles, causing muscle fiber breakage and deep pain sensation. Ginger acts as a powerful anti-inflammatory, in addition to stimulating the formation of muscle fibers by their proteins. Raw ginger has more concentrated properties to function as an anti-inflammatory.
Soothes menstrual pains
For those women who suffer from ovarian pain, it is very important to drink liquid ginger, it is the only natural remedy that does not have significant side effects.
Ginger is a natural hormone regulator, the essential oils contained in ginger regulate the effects of hormones that increase during menstruation, decreasing pain and inflammation caused by hormones.
Muscle cramps caused by hormonal changes during menstruation disappears quickly. The properties of ginger are currently being investigated to regulate the menstrual cycle.
Prevents colon cancer
The properties of gingerols are beneficial to prevent colon cancer. The antioxidant effects prevent the change of pH and the degeneration of DNA in the cells of the intestine, preventing the formation of cancer cells.
How to use ginger
The used parts of ginger are its roots to make tea or too spicy foods.
- Ginger tea for cold and sore throat: place 2 to 3 cm of ginger root in a pot with 180 ml of water and boil for 5 minutes. Strain, let cool and drink up to 3 times a day;
- Ginger compress: grate the ginger and apply to the painful region, cover with gauze and leave on for 20 minutes. These compresses can be used to place in cases of rheumatism or in some inflamed region such as the belly when you have menstruation, in the forehead for the headache or in a tooth to relieve toothache, this because it has action stimulant that makes the blood capillaries dilate, thus relieving pain
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Recipe of ginger lemonade
For the hottest days, an excellent option is to make a ginger lemonade, which has the same benefits to lose weight.
- 4 lemons;
- 5 grams of grated or powdered ginger;
- 1 liter of water.
Squeeze the juice of 4 lemons in a jar with water and ginger. Allow resting in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes. Drink the lemonade throughout the day, replacing 1 liter of water.