GINGER: A potent root
Because of its pungent taste and interesting aroma, ginger has been used since the ancient times as a spice.
In addition, ginger has been used historically for its medicinal value in a wide variety of diseases, especially in gastrointestinal disorders, such as constipation, diarrhea, anorexia, colic, dyspepsia, nausea, vomiting, and motion sickness.
Ginger, which is the underground stem or rhizome of the plant Zingiber officinale Roscoe, remains an important cooking spice around the world.
Many investigations have recently reported the health effects of ginger.
Medicinal Properties associated with Ginger
Blood pressure-lowering properties
SOME STUDIES SHOWS THAT
Ginger preparation, Trikatu, was a potent hypolipidemic agent because of its ability to reduce triglycerides and LDL cholesterol and to increase HDL.
Ginger’s effectiveness for reducing blood pressure (BP) was assessed under varied dosages. A dose-dependant (0.3—3 mg/kg) decrease was noted in arterial BP, which provides support for ginger’s role in BP regulation.
Ginger has been shown to possess anti-diabetic activity in a variety of animal studies. A study found that when rats were given ginger juice for 6 weeks, the risk for developing diabetes was reduced. The researchers found that treatment with ginger significantly increased insulin levels and decreased fasting glucose levels.
The component -gingerol, was tested for effectiveness in preventing new vessel formation. In cell cultures, -gingerol inhibited both the VEGF– and bFGF-induced growth of human skin cells. The ginger component actually stopped the cell from reproducing.
Ginger has been suggested to possess anti-arthritic properties. When the effect of ginger root extract (GRE) was tested in arthritic and normal cartilage cells there was a stepwise reduction in the inflammatory mediators in both normal and arthritic cells.
Ginger has been used in eastern medicine for the treatment of gastrointestinal ailments. The combined treatment of antibiotics and ginger were tested for the control and treatment of Helicobacter pylori infections.