Ginger known as “adrak” in Hindi is a herb that is used as a spice since times immemorial. Also known as root, it is basically the rhizome of the plant Zingiber officinale, belonging to the family Zingiberaceae, which also includes turmeric, cardamom and galangal. ginger’s root has a rather irregular shape comprising of bulbous little joints, from which small bumps grow. Fresh ginger root has a grey outer surface whereas the inner flesh ranges from ivory, creamy white to pale greenish-yellow in color, depending on the variety. The over-matured roots generally contain fibrils running through their centre. It has a peppery flavour, with a hint of lemon, and a sharp aroma. Its pungent, spicy, and aromatic smell can be attributed to the presence of essential oils and phenolic compounds such as gingerols and shogaols. Due to its strong and spicy aroma, it occupies an important place as a spice, delicacy, and even medicine. Apart from being used fresh, it is dried, powdered, pickled, or used in the form of juice or oil. Ginger’s tea is a favorite in Indian households and a great remedy for battling cold and flu.
Health benefits of Ginger
Chemotherapy is a treatment recommended after the cancer surgery to eliminate the presence of the cancerous cells so that the chances of recurrence of this disease can be minimized. It’s root supplements are helpful in reducing the nausea induced by the chemotherapy, when administered along with the other anti-vomiting medications.
It is nice for digestion by improving the absorption and assimilation of essential nutrients. It helps break down the proteins in your food and prevents ulcers by promoting mucus secretion.
Menstrual cramp Relief
Taking it at the beginning of the menstrual period can reduce the symptoms of menstrual pain in some women. Ginger tea with brown sugar is often used in the treatment of menstrual cramps in Chinese medicine.
It provides migraine relief as it can inhibit the prostaglandins from causing pain and inflammation in the blood vessels. Applying diluted gingers paste on the forehead provides relief from migraine.
Treatment of Ovarian Cancer
It’s root has a high level of antioxidants that can induce cancer cell death (apoptosis) and suppress certain proteins. It’s powder induces cell death in all the ovarian cancer cells to which it is applied.
Treatment of Respiratory Problems
Due to its antihistamine properties, it is effective in treating allergies. Inhibits airway contraction and helps in stimulating the secretion of mucus. A teaspoon of ginger juice and honey is effective in relieving the persistent cough and sore throat associated with colds. Ginger tea helps to get rid of congestion of the throat and the nose. A mixture of fresh ginger juice and fenugreek is helpful in curing asthma.
Muscle Pain Due to Exercise
Heat treatment provided by the it’s root internally gives relief from muscle inflammation and pain level were considerably low.
Manages Glucose Level
The regular intake of ginger supplement in any form can bring a noticeable change in your levels of blood sugar. Ginger benefits in reducing the incidence of diabetic nephropathy (kidney damage).
It can calm an upset stomach. Thus, ginger benefits to relief from bloating and gas, and helps reduce flatulence.
Relief from Heartburn
Ginger has been used as a natural remedy for the treatment of heartburn. Ginger tea benefits for this purpose.
Protection against Alzheimer’s Disease
Ginger slows down the process by which the brain loses its cells, which can be the precursor to Alzheimer’s. Ginger benefits to protect and preserve the brain cells, keeps active.
Ginger root supplements make you feel satiated after you eat a meal, even in small portions. This limits your food intake, thereby causing weight loss.
Reduction of Pain and Inflammation
The analgesic and anti-inflammatory property of ginger benefits in reducing the pain and swelling in the patients suffering from osteoarthritis of the knee, rheumatoid arthritis and general muscle discomfort. Adding ginger oil to your bath can help relieve muscle and joint ache. In case of muscle strain, you can apply a mixture of warm ginger paste and turmeric for relief.
Packed With Essential Oil
Root is packed with a host of essential oils such as zingerone, gingerol, farnesne, shogaol and β-phelladren, citral and cineol in small amount. Gingerols improve the intestinal motility and act as painkillers.
Lowers Cholesterol and Blood Pressure
The antioxidant properties of the essential oils in the root are highly effective in treating joint problems, fevers, coughs, toothaches, bronchitis, rheumatoid arthritis, osteoarthritis and easing the symptoms of tendinitis. Gingers root supplements can lower cholesterol and blood pressure. Ginger benefits to helps prevent internal blood clot.
Ginger root extract is quite helpful in improving the immunity of your body. The regular consumption of it in small amounts reduces the risk of stroke by eliminating the fatty deposits within the arteries, and keeping the blood circulation free.
Ginger root is used more often to treat gastric troubles in the intestine. It accumulates inside the gastrointestinal tract and alleviates issues related to stomach upsets and indigestion. [Health benefits of Turmeric]
Skin benefits of Ginger
Clears Blemishes and Acne
Gingers is a powerful antiseptic and cleansing agent, ginger benefits in keeping the skin clean, smooth and free of blemishes. It is also the best natural acne-fighting weapon as it minimizes the rate of acne formation and eruption by killing and clearing the acne-causing bacteria.
Treatment of Hypopigmented Scars (White Scars)
Hypopigmented scars occur when the skin loses its pigmentation, and are generally white or much lighter than the actual skin tone. Cut a slice of it and dab it on the hypopigmented areas and leave it for some time. You will see a slight improvement within a week or two but it should be practiced daily.
Ginger benefits for Skin
It is known for its aphrodisiac, antioxidant and toning properties, which contribute to a radiant skin. Prepare a simple mask by mixing 2 grated gingers with 2 tablespoons of honey and 1 teaspoon of lemon juice and refrigerate it for at least 30 minutes. Apply it on your face and rinse with cool water after 30 minutes. Ginger benefits to nourish and soften your skin and prevent aging.
The antioxidants prevent damage from the free radical, thus preserving the youthful appearance of the skin. It improves the elasticity, making your skin more firm and youthful. In this way, it slows down the signs of aging.
Applying fresh gingers juice can relieve the pain and heal burnt skin by restoring it to the natural position. You can also rub a fresh gingers slice on the skin 2 to 3 times a day to fade the scars within 6 to 12 weeks. Ensure to use a fresh ginger slice each time for topical application. [Skin benefits of Cinnamon]
Hair benefits of Ginger
Good For Dry and Brittle Hair
It is great for dry and brittle hair as it contains vitamins, zinc and phosphorus which impart sheen to your hair.
Ginger root is a great remedy for hair loss. Gingers extracts make your hair stronger and pleasant smelling.
Treatment of Split Ends
Split ends are caused when the hair follicles get damaged due to the exposure to pollutants and excessive heat. Gingers extracts can be used in the treatment of damaged hair follicles.
Treatment of Dandruff
Mix 2 tablespoons of freshly grated gingers with 3 tablespoons of sesame or olive oil, and add a dash of lemon juice to the mixture. Massage your scalp with it and rinse off after 15 to 30 minutes. This should be done thrice a week to get a dandruff-free scalp.
Stimulates Hair Growth
Make a hair mask by grating 1 tablespoon of gingers root in a small bowl and adding 1 tablespoon of jojoba oil to it. Massage your scalp with this mixture in circular motions and leave for 30 minutes or longer. Rinse off and shampoo as usual. This will combat hair loss and thinning hair and stimulate hair growth.
120g butter, softened.
130g brown sugar.
2 tbsp treacle or molasses.
270g plain flour.
1½ tsp baking powder.
¼ tsp salt.
2 tbsp ground gingers.
2 tsp fresh ginger, peeled and grated.
110g crystallised gingers, chopped.
80g flaked almonds, toasted.
- Preheat the oven to 180C/350F/gas mark 4. Cream the butter and brown sugar together until light and fluffy.
- Add the eggs one by one, beating after each egg, then drizzle in the treacle. Beat together well.
- In a separate bowl, mix together the flour, baking powder, salt and powdered ground gingers. Add this to the wet ingredients and then stir in the fresh ginger, crystallised gingers and toasted almonds.
- Form the mixture into two logs of dough (each log should be about 20cm long and 5cm cool for around 5 minutes.
- Carefully slice the logs into biscotti (the dough might still be a little crumbly). then turn each one over on its side and bake for another 10-12 minutes. Leave to cool.
Ginger Hot Chocolate
2 cups milk
1 cup water.
sweetener to taste
1/4-1/2 tsp ground or fresh grated gingers
1/4 cup cocoa or cacao powder.
pinch sea salt.
1 tsp pure vanilla extract.
2-3 ginger candies (optional).
- Heat the milk and water in a medium saucepan. Once it comes to a simmer, reduce heat slightly and whisk in cocoa powder, sea salt and gingers. Whisk vigorously to incorporate.
- Once the cocoa is hot enough for your liking (about 3-5 minutes), remove from heat and add vanilla extract. Stir once more.
- Take your gingers candies and rub them along the rims of your serving glasses or mugs. Eat or discard; they get mushy when added to the beverage.
- Pour in hot cocoa and top with coconut cream, whipped cream or marshmallows.
100 gram fresh gingers, peeled.
1 teaspoon salt.
juice of 2 lemons.
3-4 green chillies.
- To prepare the Gingers Pickle, first peel and wash the gingers. Pat dry it with the kitchen towel.
- Cut gingers into thin juliennes or strips. Place the juliennes in a glass mixing bowl, add the salt and give it a good stir. Set this aside for 5 minutes or till ginger releases water and turn soft.
- While the gingers is in the bowl slice the chillies diagonally into thin, long slices.
- Add the chillies and lemon juice and give it a good stir. Let the pickle rest for few minutes at room temperature and the ginger changes color to light pink.
- Transfer instant ginger pickle to a clean and dry glass jar, seal the jar with a lid and store the pickle in the refrigerator.