Healthy Foods: Ginger

Healthy Foods

Alright, I have to admit that one of my favorite sodas is Reed’s Ginger Brew. Actually, I prefer the Extra Ginger Brew. So it was great to learn that ginger is an essential ingredient in most every Ayurvedic tincture as it is known to enhance the healing benefits of other herbs. This is not to say that it doesn’t offer enough benefits on its own accord.

Ginger contains calcium, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium, copper, manganese, vitamin B6, vitamin C and fiber as well as Omega-3 fatty acids. But its volatile oils, gingerols, shogaols and zingiberene, are where it packs its power.

If you suffer from motion sickness, seasickness (including dizziness and cold sweating), nausea, vomiting, morning sickness, reactions to chemotherapy, etc., turn to ginger. It has been found far superior to Dramamine and other prescription drugs in eliminating all of these symptoms. The oils in ginger aid digestion by causing more digestive enzymes to be released. It promotes the elimination of intestinal gas and soothes the intestinal tract (helping with cramps as well).

Many studies have proven ginger is a powerful anti-inflammatory and relieves swelling and pain for arthritis sufferers. Migraine sufferers also may find relief by ginger’s ability to inhibit the prostaglandins which cause inflammation of the blood vessels in the brain. Some ginger at the onset can stop one altogether.

Ginger warms the body which stimulates blood circulation. At the same time is it is an anticoagulant (preventing platelet aggregation) and relaxes the muscles around the blood vessels which also helps to prevent blood clots. Researchers have found it has the same effect on blood clots as aspirin does.

Are you suffering from a cold? The warming properties in ginger can help to eliminate a fever and make it a natural decongestant and antihistamine.

As if all the above is not enough, ginger has also been found effective in reducing tumor growth. Research has shown that ginger may inhibit the growth of colorectal cancer cells and has been shown to kill ovarian cancer cells.

Ginger has long been an essential spice in Indian and Asian foods as well as used for medicinal purposes. So enjoy your ginger ale and ginger snaps and look for other ways to introduce ginger into your diet.