Ginger - A spice to spice up digestive health
16 September 2020
Ginger has been used through the ages for both its enjoyable culinary properties and its health benefits. The world’s oldest healthcare systems, including Ayurveda, emphasize strong digestive function, and ginger has been one of the primary herbs used for that purpose for thousands of years. Today, modern science has not only confirmed those benefits, but expanded upon what ancient doctors taught.
Ginger’s wonderful flavor serves a purpose - its stimulation of the taste buds influences the release of digestive enzymes to break down the food to extract nourishment. Throughout history, ginger has been used to improve gut-related conditions such as dyspepsia, flatulence, bloating, nausea, intestinal cramping, vomiting, and other stomach complaints we’d rather not experience.1,2,3
It's not just an old wives’ tale recommending ginger for morning sickness; research confirms that ginger calms nausea and vomiting during pregnancy and is useful in counteracting the same side effect of chemotherapy.4
Ginger also supports healthy liver function. Research shows benefits in managing non-alcoholic fatty liver disease, a rapidly growing health concern, among other benefits.5
One of ginger’s properties is that it is warming, which is why it is incorporated into so many dishes traditionally served in the cold weather months. A cup of ginger tea is almost miraculous in its ability to counteract the chills brought on by winter weather.
Today, ginger is not only used for food seasoning by many consumers, it’s also taken in dietary supplements, so they get its benefits every day.
- Nikkhah BM, Maleki I, Hekmatdoost A. Ginger in gastrointestinal disorders: A systematic review of clinical trials. Food Sci Nutr. 2018;7(1):96-108
- Lazzini S et al., The effect of ginger (Zingiber officinalis) and artichoke (Cynara cardunculus) extract supplementation on gastric motility: a pilot randomized study in healthy volunteers. Eur Rev Med Pharmacol Sci. 2016;20(1):146-149
- Hu ML et al., Rayner CK, Wu KL, Chuah SK, Tai WC, Chou YP et al. Effect of ginger on gastric motility and symptoms of functional dyspepsia. World J Gastroenterol. 2011;17(1):105-110
- Lete I, Allué J. Integr Med Insights. The Effectiveness of Ginger in The Prevention of Nausea and Vomiting During Pregnancy and Chemotherapy Integrative Medicine Insights 2016;11:11–7
- Rahimlou M, Yari Z, Hekmatdoost A, Alavian SM, Keshavarz SA. Ginger supplementation in nonalcoholic fatty liver disease: A randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled pilot study. Hepat Mon. 2016;16(1):e34897