GINGER'S TEST RESULTS
(references are linked)
One study of Ginger extract, combined with the extract of Garlic, found that they had an antibacterial effect that shows potential for use against multi-drug resistant pathogens, while another found that Ginger extract was notably antibacterial against two different strains of Streptococcus bacteria.
Ginger capsules were used in a study involving 120 college students who had primary dysmenorrhea and the results indicated that the use of Ginger significantly reduced the severity and duration of painful symptoms.
Widely studied for its possible use in the treatment or prevention of diabetes mellitus and related symptoms, one study found that Ginger could protect against the degeneration of renal cells and reduce the severity of damage caused by certain medications, while another study found that it decreased inflammation in patients with type 2 diabetes. Yet another found that Ginger significantly reduced structural abnormalities in the hearts of diabetic rats. Diabetes patients using Ginger have experienced a significant reduction in blood glucose, triglycerides, total cholesterol, LDL and VLDL cholesterol, while also finding that Ginger helps to protect the liver and kidneys, as well as from other diabetes-related complications.
Additionally, Ginger helps people to feel fuller faster, demonstrates antimicrobial and antifungal effects, effectively decreased sperm DNA fragmentation in infertile men, and, in one study, was found to have a potential anti-addictive effect against the chronic use of morphine. It’s also thought to help improve mental function in middle-aged women.
Ginger is consistently tested for anti-carcinogenic effects and has been studied for possible use to prevent / treat such cancers as colorectal cancer, prostate cancer, breast cancer, endometrial cancer and cervical cancer.
Practical Applications and Favorite Uses
Ginger can be taken as a tea when dealing with menstrual cramps that feel better when you apply a heating pad to your abdomen. Many people like to add Chamomile to the tea to make it even more effective. A warm compress dipped in Ginger tea or a poultice can also be applied to lower abdomen for the same purpose. To make Ginger tea, pour freshly boiled water over a piece of Ginger about the size of the tip of your thumb (you can also mince or slice the piece or use a bit of dried Ginger powder or a prepared tea bag), cover the mug, and let it steep for about 10 minutes.
Ginger can be infused into a carrier oil that can be used as a base for warming massage oils (think muscle aches and pains), salves and creams (warming, circulatory applications for cold hands or feet), or even scalp massage oils.
I love to add Ginger to hand and foot baths (or even full body baths), especially during the cooler months, to encourage healthy circulation, warm me up, and provide a little immune system boost.
A variety of smoothie chains offer juiced Ginger (you can make it at home too), which can be taken plain or used in Ginger lemonades and sodas.
Candied Ginger can be stored in an airtight jar and kept in the pantry or your purse. If you deal with carsickness or food-related nausea, it’s a handy remedy to keep on hand. When you make candied Ginger, you also end up with Ginger syrup, which can be added to lemonades, sodas, apple cider and other drinks, or drizzled on pancakes, cornbread or muffins.
Include a bit of Ginger in herbal formulas as a catalyst that helps to boost the effectiveness of the other herbs in the formula. It’s wonderful for encouraging a quick-acting herbal synergy.
Ginger for Dogs
Sprinkle a tiny bit of powdered Ginger in with your dog’s dinner to help encourage healthy digestion. It also works especially well for dogs that are experiencing pain or symptoms of cold in their limbs. I like to use Ginger in my homemade dog food for our German Shepherd – adding it when I’m cooking up proteins, or even adding a piece to the water when I’m making the rice for her food is an easy way to incorporate Ginger into her meals (remove the chunk of Ginger before serving).
Ginger-infused carrier oil can make a great base for topical salves and creams that are massaged into the skin when dealing with symptoms of pain that are relieved by heat.
Note: If you have a dog that already leans toward a hotter constitution, Ginger may not be the best choice for your pup.
NOTES ABOUT SAFETY
Ginger is generally considered a very safe herb, but some herbalists recommend using it only in small doses when pregnant and others recommend avoiding it when experiencing symptoms of heat in the body or when using blood thinning medications.
On a scale of 1 to 10, how much do you like Ginger? Let me know in the comments section below.