THE WORLD’S BEST SUPERFOOD? THE INCREDIBLE HEALTH BENEFITS OF GINGER
Ginger packs a punch – both in terms of flavour and nutrition. This everyday ingredient may not look like anything special, but underneath its lumpy exterior is one of the world’s best superfoods like no other. Packed with anti-inflammatory gingerol, ginger has been proven to soothe the stomach, lower blood pressure, ease osteoarthritis and even protect the brain. In this post, we’ll share some of the incredible health benefits of ginger, and offer suggestions for making the most of this delicious superfood.
Prevents and treats the common cold
The next time you feel a cold coming on, don’t reach for the decongestant – try brewing yourself a cup of ginger tea instead. Used for millennia as a natural treatment for colds and flu across Asia, in 2013 research published in the The Journal of Ethnopharmacology gave this remedy scientific backing. The study showed that fresh ginger is effective against human respiratory syncytial virus (HRSV) infections – one of the most common viruses responsible for the common cold. As well as being packed with active compounds that help speed up recovery, the warming flavour of ginger helps soothe a sore throat and blocked nose – especially when combined with anti-bacterial lemon and soothing honey.
Keeps Nausea at Bay
For thousands of years, ginger has been a trusted remedy for everything from morning sickness to indigestion – and for good reason. Countless studies have shown that ginger is packed full of health benefits when it comes to keeping nausea at bay. One placebo-controlled study found that taking just one gram of ginger daily helped ease morning sickness for women in early pregnancy, performing better than a placebo to soothe the stomach. Boasting anti-spasmodic and carminative properties, this superfood ingredient is a must-have supplement for soothing all kinds of digestive distress.
Reduces inflammation and pain of arthritis
For many suffering from osteoarthritis, ginger is a lifesaver. In particular, its anti-inflammatory properties work in the same way as COX-2 inhibitors – a type of drug used to fight inflammation. The secret to its health benefits lies in gingerol – a powerful compound that has an analgesic effect on the joints. Studies show that ginger is particularly helpful for those suffering from arthritis of the knee, with one 2000 study revealing that ginger extract is as effective as ibuprofen in reducing pain. Another 2016 study showed that ginger taken with echinacea supplements work to ease inflammation and pain after knee surgery.
Helps fight infection
Ginger is a triple threat against infection thanks to its antibacterial, antifungal and antimicrobial properties. In fact, studies show that ginger extract is effective in inhibiting the growth of a wide variety of bacteria, making it a vital tool in preventing drug-resistant microbial diseases. This zingy superfood also contains a group of chemical compounds called sesquiterpene that are known to kill the RSV virus – a common cause of respiratory infections.
How to make the most of ginger
With such a delicious taste, it’s not difficult to add ginger to your daily life. Whether you cook it in a stir fry or steep it with lemon and cinnamon for a warming tea, there are lots of ways to incorporate ginger into your diet. However, to guarantee you’re enjoying ginger’s health benefits every day, you might want to consider taking a supplement. Thanks to its gut-soothing effects, ginger extract is a staple in the best food-based digestive supplements, working in combination with other powerful superfoods to protect and improve your health.