14 Medicinal Remedies of Ginger Spice to Prevent Multiple Health Problems
Ginger (scientific name: Zingiber officinale) is an incredible modified stem, which is used as a spice and Ayurvedic medicine for treatment against various diseases since ancient times in India. Known for its multipurpose usage and benefits, it holds an important place as a crop with high medicinal values. According to Charak Samhita and Shushruta Samhita, the ginger herb is very effective for protection against various diseases. Originated from Southeast Asia, its usage spread as a warm delicious spice to other parts of the world through ancient Greek and Roman rulers, as well as traders. Now, it is widely acknowledged as a crop containing vitamins, proteins, minerals, including iron, potassium, magnesium, phosphorus, sodium, and zinc, and bioactive compounds with high nutritional values and healing properties.
Ginger (family name: Zingiberaceae) has anti-inflammatory, aphrodisiac, antiviral and analgesic properties that make it the most commonly used spice in the kitchens all over India. It is used to improve digestion, cure cough, and the common cold, prevent nausea, provide relief from joint pain, and for several other health benefits. Dry ginger is rich in anti-oxidants and promotes the digestive fire. It is used as an appetizer for improved digestion and aphrodisiac for various sexual disorders.
Applying ginger paste on the body helps in alleviating foul smell, heaviness, drowsiness, itching, and anorexia. It is a great appetizer and its juice is very beneficial in constipation.
1. Ginger has Anti-Emetic Properties
Grind a few pieces of ginger and onion and take their juice to prevent vomiting and relief from nausea. Similarly, chewing ginger post-surgery can help overcome nausea. It is equally effective for pregnant women and cancer patients undergoing chemotherapy to get rid of nausea.
2. Provides Relief in Cough and Common Cold
Grind a few pieces of ginger and take its juice with honey. It could also be taken with jaggery and is very effective against dry or wet cough. It could also be boiled with water and sugar to make ginger tea, which is a common practice in India in the winter season.
3. As an Appetizer and for Regulating Alimentary Canal
Regular intake of a few pieces of ginger with salt before eating helps in increasing the appetite. The enzymes in ginger are very helpful in treating gastric problems. It also kills the harmful bacteria present in the alimentary canal and aids in digestion. A mixture of ginger, ajowan caraway, lemon juice and rock salt taken after eating helps in improving digestion. The improved digestive system also helps in reducing diabetes.
4. For Glowing Skin
Boil few pieces of ginger with water and take regularly. It softens the skin and leads to a glow in the skin. Similarly, a mask of ginger with honey and lemon juice applied on the face enhances the skin texture.
5. For Improved Memory and Healthy Heart
Ginger is very effective against various cardiovascular conditions, as it has a bioactive compound gingerol, which is an anticoagulant (a blood thinner). Thus, it reduces cholesterol and maintains blood pressure that keeps the heart healthy. Regular intake of ginger with boiled water improves blood circulation and keeps the brain active and healthy.
A Note of Caution: As ginger has anti-coagulant property, people with hemophilic conditions or other bleeding disorders are advised not to take it without consulting a medical professional.
6. Reduces Muscle Pain
Eating 2-3 small pieces of ginger with salt on a regular basis for 2 weeks helps in alleviating muscle pain. In case of pain in a tooth, a piece of ginger with salt should be placed in the tooth for 2-3 weeks. It will help reduce the pain. Similarly, taking ginger with ghee helps strengthen bones and provides relief from joint pain.
7. Anti-Inflammatory in Nature
Ginger is also anti-inflammatory due to the presence of gingerol. A mixture of sugarcane juice with ginger juice and mint juice in small quantities helps reduce chest and stomach inflammation.
8. Improves Vocal Cord/Sore Throat
Regular intake of ginger ground with green chili in small quantity sharpens larynx for improved speech. Similarly, a tea of ginger with honey and lemon cures the problem of sore throat.
9. Reduces Mouth Odour
Eating ginger also helps in alleviating bad mouth odor by stimulating the enzymes in saliva that break down the substances causing bad odor.
10. Has Anti-Carcinogenic Properties
Ginger is considered to be a better option than chemotherapy, as it contains anti-carcinogenic compounds, including 6-gingerol, 6-shogaol, paradols, and zingerone, which destroy cancer cells and these cells start damaging themselves. It is also beneficial in the treatment of ovarian cancer.
11. Reduces Acidity
Take small pieces of ginger with black salt half an hour before eating. It will kill the acidity-causing pylori bacteria and increase the bile juice for digestion, thus helping in reducing acidity.
12. Improves Menstrual Cycle
Regular intake of 1 tablespoon of ginger boiled with sugar and water helps in regulating the production of prostaglandins, which are chemicals causing muscle contractions to help uterus shed its covering, and thus improves menstrual cycle and reduces stomach pain.
13. Cures Stomach Rumbling
Taking ginger or ginger tea helps reduce flatulence and rumbling sounds in the stomach.
14. Strengthens Liver and Immunity
Regular intake of fresh ginger juice with lemon before going to bed is very effective as a detoxifying agent by cleaning the waste and toxic elements in the liver, colon and other organs of our body. It strengthens the liver by protecting the liver from free radical damage and fat accumulation, boosts the body’s metabolism, and improves immunity.
Significance of Ginger in Ayurveda
According to Ayurveda, the human body is composed of five elements, including space, air, fire, water, and earth, and there are three doshas (biological energies) - Vata, Pitta, and Kapha - in human mind and body. Vata represents space and air and it is the energy of movement and force in the body. It relates to body functions, such as breathing, talking, movements in the muscles and tissues, circulation, menstruation, food assimilation, bowel movement, and urination. Pitta represents fire and water and is the energy of digestion and metabolism in the body. It relates to mental feelings, such as joy and anger, and its imbalance causes inflammation, rashes, ulcers, heartburn, and fever. Similarly, Kapha represents earth and water and is the energy of formation and lubrication in the body. It relates to body fluids, such as mucous and lubricants, and its imbalance causes obesity, sinus, and congestion. Ancient sages like Acharya Sushruta and Maharishi Charak from India knew the great importance of ginger as a miraculous herb for pacifying Vata, Pitta and Kapha doshas in the human body and mentioned it to be Vishwabhesaja (the universal medicine) and Mahaoushadhi (the great medicine). Hence, incorporating ginger extracts or ginger tea in our daily routine can have a positive effect on our overall health.
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This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and does not substitute for diagnosis, prognosis, treatment, prescription, and/or dietary advice from a licensed health professional. Drugs, supplements, and natural remedies may have dangerous side effects. If pregnant or nursing, consult with a qualified provider on an individual basis. Seek immediate help if you are experiencing a medical emergency.
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© 2020 Mahesh Chandra Gaur