Health Benefits of Ginger
The American Phytotherapy Research Laboratory in Salt Lake City has conducted a classic study on motion sickness, which determined you might be able to leave the dramamine on the shelf during your next vacation. However, the medicine is more potent and more effective if you have moderate or severe motion sickness.
A Quick Study
By spinning motion sickness-prone students in two groups-one group was given dramamine, the other group ginger -- it was discovered that the group given the ginger was able to withstand the full 6 minute "spin" with less nausea and dizziness, while the other group stopped the ride within 4-1/2 minutes. Do keep in mind this was a quick test of short duration and more studies are needed, however the results show noteworthy promise.
Japanese researchers believe the gingerols found in ginger, may be responsible for blocking the body's reflex to vomit. Taking 1/4 teaspoon 20 minutes before a car or boat trip should give you about 4 hours of relief. Another popular remedy is 3 or 4 slices of sliced ginger in a cup of boiling water to make ginger tea. Sip as needed to relieve nausea caused by motion sickness.
Denmark researchers have discovered that ginger can block the effects of prostaglandins. These are substances that cause inflammation of the blood vessels in the brain, which leads to migraines. Though the results are still experimental, 1/3 teaspoon of fresh of powdered ginger taken when you feel a migraine coming on can help stop pain before it starts. Using the same theory, ginger has been found to produce "marked" relief in arthritis pain. The ginger tea described above or 1/2 teaspoon of ginger is recommended by Danish researchers for arthritis relief.
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A researcher at Cornell University Medical College discovered that ginger has an effect on blood clots that is similar to that of aspirin. By the same token, it appears that high cholesterol levels are lowered using the same active ingredient, thromboxane.
When buying ginger, fresh is best! Be sure to avoid ginger with dry, wrinkled, skin, mold or soft spots. African and Indian ginger are the most potent. Grating or using a garlic press will give you the maximum benefit.
Ginger can definitely give you many benefits but more is not always better. An ounce a day should give you all the benefits you will need.
See also: Ginger and Inflammation