Ginger is a very popular ingredient in many prepared meals, especially in Asian countries where the focus seems to be more on healthier foods like vegetables and spices. Here in the west, most of us are certainly familiar with ginger ale, which gets its distinctive flavor from ginger – at least when it is made from natural ingredients. It turns out there is a whole lot more to ginger than just a good flavor for a soft drink, or an ingredient in our favorite dish at an Asian restaurant. Ginger has numerous health benefits, and we could probably all benefit from eating more of it. Here are a few ways ginger can help improve your health.
Medical research has found that ginger may be beneficial in the fight against cancer. One study determined that ginger may help treat ovarian cancer, while the other discovered that it may help in the battle against colorectal cancer by slowing the grown of cancer cells.
For some women who become pregnant morning sickness is not much of a problem at all, while for others it can be a nightmare. Ginger, long known for its ability to help soothe the stomach, was found to be just as effective as vitamin B-6 for the treatment of morning sickness.
Although the causes of morning sickness and motion sickness are very different, the results are often the same: Upset stomach, nausea and vomiting. Just as it helps alleviate the symptoms of morning sickness, ginger can also help reduce the effects of motion sickness.
Millions of people have problems with blood circulation, especially those who are elderly, or who have smoked for many years. Ginger contains three very beneficial minerals, chromium, magnesium and zinc. These three minerals can help improve blood flow, helping to alleviate some of the problems that stem from poor circulation.
Although this benefit might seem a bit obscure, it’s potentially a big one, since how we absorb the nutrients in the food we eat has a tremendous impact on our general health. Ginger can stimulate the release of gastric secretions from the pancreas, which is essential for the proper digestion of food and how effectively our bodies take up nutrients.
Inflammation in the body is suspected as the cause of an almost countless variety of health problems. Not only does ginger help fight inflammation due to its powerful anti-inflammatory properties, but it has also earned itself a reputation as a pain killer.
Ginger can help expand the lungs and make breathing easier for those suffering from various respiratory illnesses. Since ginger is also a natural expectorant, it can help to break up mucus and phlegm, making it easier to expel from the body.
Ginger can also help boost the immune system, making the body better equipped to fight off just about any kind of sickness you can think of, from colds and flu to cancer. It has become clear to doctors and scientists that the body’s own immune system is the most important weapon in the fight against any form of illness.
Since consuming even a little bit of ginger every day can help prevent fatty deposits in the arteries, it may help to cut down on the risk of stroke.
We’ve already mentioned ginger’s ability to help reduce the effects of morning sickness and motion sickness, but its ability to aid digestion does not end there. Ginger is also helpful to those who are suffering from heartburn or indigestion. It’s most commonly used to brew a soothing tea when it is used for this purpose.
Research studies suggest that ginger may be useful in the treatment of migraine headaches. It is believed that it can help stop a hormone-like substance in the body called prostaglandins from causing inflammation and pain in blood vessels, which may be a cause for migraines.