Ginger has been used extensively in India and China since 3000 BC as both a culinary and therapeutic spice. Aside from its medicinal qualities, its incredible versatility may have a lot to do with its popularity and longevity as a herbal treatment. It’s often prepared as extracts, tinctures, capsules, and oils. Both fresh and dried ginger can be added to a wide variety of dishes, and fresh ginger root makes an excellent tea.
Ginger is a natural blood thinner. If you’re currently taking prescription blood thinners, it’s very important that you consult your physician before taking a ginger supplement.
Here are some ways you can try using ginger to improve your health:
You can use ginger to:
- Boost your immune system: Ginger is really high in B vitamins which are crazy good for your immune system. You can add it to food, but it’s most effective taken in supplement form. Start with a dose of 1 gram a day.
- Reduce joint pain: The gingerol in ginger is a natural anti-inflammatory and pain reliever. To reduce swelling that causes joint pain, you can take 250 mg 4 times daily, or try making a ginger tea by steeping 1/2 teaspoon grated ginger in 8 ounces boiling water for 10 to 15 minutes.
- Relieve sore muscles, bruises, headaches: Ginger works as a blood thinner and reduces swelling. Take 2-4 grams a day.
- Ease toothaches: Ginger is a counter-irritant, so the surface irritation it causes helps diminish the deeper pain of the toothache. Cut and peel a slice of ginger and stick it directly on the sore tooth and bite down. Hold your bite for at least two minutes, and then remove the ginger. Repeat as necessary to ease the pain.
- Reduce cold and flu symptoms: Ginger is high in zinc, which helps you fight off colds. It also promotes perspiration, reducing a fever and clearing congestion. Treat yourself to a steaming mug of lemon ginger honey tea. The lemon is full of vitamin C and phytochemicals, the ginger boosts your immune system, and the honey soothes your throat. Combine 4-6 thin slices of raw peeled ginger, ½ a lemon, and 1-2 tbsp of honey into a cup of hot water.
- Improve digestion: The oil in ginger encourages the secretion of digestive enzymes and relieve symptoms of indigestion. For nausea, gas, or indigestion, take 2 – 4 grams of fresh root daily (0.25 – 1.0 g of powdered root) or 1.5 – 3.0 mL (30 – 90 drops) liquid extract daily. You can also make a tea using the same ingredients listed above for cold and flu symptoms.
- Relieve nausea: The phenol compounds and oils in ginger make it a fast-acting cure for nausea of all kinds. To prevent vomiting, take 1 gram of powdered ginger (1/2 tsp) every 4 hours as needed up to 4 doses daily, or take 2 ginger capsules (1 gram each) 3 times daily. You can also chew a 1/4 oz piece of fresh ginger when needed.
- Regulate blood sugar: Ginger helps to regulate blood sugar by stimulating pancreatic cells and lowering cholesterol levels. Take up to 4 gram of ginger daily.
Important note: The use of herbs is a time-honoured approach to strengthening the body and treating disease. But, as with all medicines, please consult your physician before using herbs to treat your symptoms. Many herbs can trigger side effects and interact negatively other herbs, supplements, or medications and may not be suitable for all people.