Ginger is a popular spice used in Indian and Asian cuisine to flavor various dishes. While this spice is often considered savory and is used in many meat-based dishes, ginger is also used in candies, in baked goods and is popular in tea blends.
This versatile root has a lovely flavor and a tasty heat that isn’t too overwhelming. Aside from being pleasing to the palate, ginger is said to be packed with various health benefits. When it comes to herbs and spices, there is no sure thing, but ginger’s benefits have been noted for centuries so it’s worth a look.
4 Potential Benefits of Consuming Ginger
Though the health benefits of ginger has been known in many cultures dating back to ancient times, a surprising number of Americans are in the dark about why this spice is so important.
- Ginger Can Help Your Body Fight Inflammation
Ginger is anti-inflammatory in nature and is especially useful for people with arthritis or other joint issues. In a study done by the Miami Veterans Affairs Medical Center and University of Miami, participants given a ginger supplement had a significant decrease in knee pain.
- Ginger May Help Fight Nausea and Morning Sickness
You may have heard that eating some ginger snap cookies during a car trip helps with motion sickness. Ginger has been known to help some people combat nausea, whether it’s sea sickness or morning sickness, for quite some time now. This analysis of studies showed that ginger helped to relieve morning sickness-related nausea without causing any adverse side-effects.
- Ginger Can Help with Blood Sugar Management
Ginger has been shown to decrease blood sugar levels and reduce the risk of heart disease in some patients with type 2 diabetes. This study showed that participants given just 2 grams of ground ginger per day lowered their blood sugar by 12%.
- Ginger Could Have Anti-Cancer Properties
There are studies involving ovarian cancer, prostate cancer and many other types of cancer that show the benefit of the use of ginger. For example, in a study done on ovarian cancer, tumors reduced in size and slowed in growth greatly. Doctors suggest that women should take a ginger supplement to reduce the risk of getting cancer. Of course this doesn’t suggest a cure, but a suggestion that ginger could be part of an overall treatment regime for some diseases.
Ginger is also very well-known to boost the immune system, reduce symptoms of illnesses like the flu or a cold, and soothe the stomach if you have indigestion.
How to Get More Ginger In Your Diet
There are a few different ways you can add more ginger into your everyday diet. Here are 3 ideas to get you started.
- Make a Nutrient-Packed Green Smoothie with Ginger
Green smoothies should already be a part of your diet as they are a great way to get enough vegetables and fruits into your diet. Adding ginger to your green smoothies are one of the easiest ways of getting more of the spice into your diet. You can either grate fresh ginger (1/2 inch piece, peeled) or use a powdered ginger. Try about a teaspoon to start with so it isn’t too overpowering.
- Drink Ginger Tea Every Day
Ginger tea can be a great alternative to your morning coffee or tea. Otherwise, try to have a cup of this tea once a day to get its benefits. Ginger tea is extremely simple to make at home. All you need to do is mix 2 teaspoons of grated ginger in 8 oz of hot water. Use 2 teaspoons of sugar or honey to taste. This tea is great to drink if you are feeling nauseous or feel a cold coming on. You can also buy ginger tea at the store though this is more expensive and, depending on the brand, may not be very powerful.
- Use Fresh Ginger In Your Cooking More Often
The easiest way to eat more ginger is to make a serious effort to add it to your recipes more often. Ginger goes well in a huge variety of dishes so the next time you are cooking a savory dish, add some grated ginger or powdered ginger. Ginger in soups and stews is a great idea for winter time or if you have a cold as the natural heat of ginger will warm you up (it’s great in Pumpkin and Squash soups).
Ginger is an amazing root spice that is equally delicious as it is healthy. You can find ginger root and high-quality ginger powders at most any grocery store in the produce and spice section. Make an effort to eat or drink ginger more often and see if the claims make sense to you.