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Ginger – and Its Spicy, Almost Magical, Powers!

15 Jan

Ginger tea

The list of health benefits of ginger is never ending and even medical science is beginning to look with new eyes at how ginger works wonders in treating so many conditions. Ginger has properties rich in at least 12 anti-oxidants, as well as being anti-inflammatory, anti-cancer, anti spasmic and an aphrodisiac – it provides a natural treatment for everything from cancer to colds. This little powerhouse of a herb has essential oils, protein, calcium phosphorus, iron, vitamin C, choline, folic acid, inositol, manganese, panthotenic acid, silicon and even vitamin B3 all packed into its almost wizened rhizone appearance.

Some people find ginger to be almost too spicy but if you can get used to the taste, it might be just what you are looking for to treat that condition.

You can easily get hold of ginger in its natural form from the fresh produce aisle at your local grocery store and it will keep for a couple of weeks or more in the kitchen. You can add ginger into lots of your cooking and baking while a teaspoon of fresh ginger juice in your beverages will give you continuous heath benefits.

How many different uses can we fit into this blog

  • Allergies: ginger acts as an antihistamine and aids in the treatment of allergies.
  • Arthritis: ginger’s anti inflammatory properties can be used to treat rheumatoid arthritis, osteoarthritis, and various other muscular disorders. Ginger provides substantial relief for the pain caused by inflammation and helps decrease swelling and morning stiffness. Some have found the chemical components of ginger to be more effective in treating the inflammation that the NSAIDs that are traditionally prescribed.
  • Cancer: studies have found that ginger powder induces cell death in all ovarian cancer cells to which it was applied while another study at the University of Minnesota found that ginger may slow the growth of colorectal cancer cells in colon cancer.
  • Cholesterol: ginger has proven to help lower your cholesterol levels and prevent the formation of blood clots.
  • Coughs, colds and flu: for a ginger tea, cut up a small piece of ginger and boil it with a small cup of pure drinking water. Add some green tea leaves if you wish. Strain and drink while still hot for a fever (resulting from a cold) or if you feel a cold coming. Drink ginger juice with raw honey 3 to 4 times a day for a bad throat to soothe and help clear up phlegm. Ginger also helps to stimulate getting rid of mucus while soothing your cough and any scratchiness in the throat. Ginger can help with stomach flu too.
  • Digestive disorder: mix a teaspoonful of fresh ginger juice with one teaspoonful each of fresh lime juice and fresh mint juice with some honey to taste in a glass of water. This is a wonderful drink for relieving the discomfort of heartburn, indigestion and even flatulence.
  • Fatigue: make yourself a cup of ginger tea but add a piece of cinnamon bark, bring to boil and then cover it for about half an hour till it turns to golden color. A great pick-me-up for fatigue while relieving muscle aches and pains too.
  • Impotency: for this home remedy, mix a teaspoonful of fresh ginger juice to a half-boiled egg and a teaspoonful of honey and take on an empty stomach, every night for a month to treat impotency, premature ejaculation and for an increased sperm count but no studies conducted for this one! However, for a natural aphrodisiac, drink hot ginger tea (by mixing ginger juice, hot water and raw honey) after a not-too-heavy meal and see if it works!
  • Menstruation discomfort: as before, crush a piece of fresh ginger and boil with a cup of water and add a little honey to taste. Drink it hot two or three times a day for a month. The pain-relieving and anti-cramping compounds in ginger effectively help relieve painful cramps. In Chinese medicine, ginger tea with brown sugar is used in the treatment of menstrual cramps.
  • Morning sickness and motion sickness: a teaspoonful of fresh ginger juice with some honey will also help alleviate morning sickness, sea or motion sickness, dizziness and even nausea caused by chemotherapy or anesthesia. Studies have found that ginger is as effective as vitamin B6 for combatting morning sickness. The pungent constituents of ginger (namely shogaols and gingerols) are behind this effectiveness because of their ability to control the movements of the gastrointestinal tract. The extracts of ginger used in ginger beer and ginger ale have been used as stomach settlers for generations in many countries.
  • Pain killer: pure ginger juice can be used for headaches when applied to the forehead. For toothache, apply to the external area either on the cheek or jaw area. Ginger can also be used for migraine relief due to its ability to stop prostaglandins from causing pain and inflammation in blood vessels.

Even the medical form of ginger, popularly known as ‘Jamaica Ginger’, is used for treating dyspepsia and colic diseases and is especially recommended to people who suffer from gall stones. When you ingest ginger, it triggers the release of bile from the gall bladder so that the problem gradually heals over a period of time.

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