Ginger plays an important role in prevention of many diseases. Ginger is considered safe and used for as wide variety of conditions and modern day research has found it effective in many disorders. Ginger is also used as an Anupana or vehicle for administration of Ayurvedic medicines. Rhizome of ginger is most widely used as a common condiment for various foods and beverages. Ginger is on the US FDA’s GRAS (Generally Recognized As Safe) list. The British Herbal Compendium documents no adverse effects of ginger consumption. Fresh ginger is known as Ardrak in Sanskrit and Dry ginger is known as Shunti in Sanskrit. Dry ginger and fresh ginger are quite similar in action, except that fresh ginger should be used in low amounts or avoided in autumn and summer. Powdered dry ginger root is typically used as flavouring for recipes such as gingerbread, cookies, crackers and cakes, ginger ale, and ginger beer. Ginger pickle, ginger wine and ginger candies are also prepared from ginger.
Benefits of Ginger
- Ginger is described as an appetizer in Ayurveda and is an excellent remedy for the treatment of digestive disorders. Oral intake of fresh ginger with rock salt is carminative, digestive, promotes taste and is a laxative. It also has anti inflammatory properties.
- Consumption of ginger in the beginning of meals is wholesome, cleanses throat and tongue, carminative, digestive and promotes taste & helps relish food.
- Fresh ginger when administered with jaggery before food is beneficial in Haemorrhoids, Asthma, Cold, Emaciation, Cough and disorders of Kapha vitiation.
- Fresh ginger when dipped in lemon juice chewed after every meal gives mouth freshness.
- In Asthma / Cough, a mixture of ginger, Amalaki (Emblica officinalis) and honey is administered.
- For numbness, ginger paste is applied externally on affected part.
- For Joint pain / Stiffness, mix ginger powder with sesame oil and apply as a paste on joints. This will help to relieve stiffness in joints.
- In Amavata (Rheumatoid arthritis), water boiled with ginger or ginger tea is recommended daily.
- For headache, a glue of powdered dried ginger can be applied over the forehead to mitigate headache.
- For Sore throat, ginger powder mixed with honey is administered.
- For Productive cough, fresh ginger juice can be administered with honey or a pinch of fresh ginger is grinded with a handful of basil leaves, mixed with honey and administered.
- For Dry cough, fresh ginger juice is administered with turmeric, natural cane sugar and honey.
- In Cold and Cough, a pinch of fresh ginger is boiled with 5 whole peppercorns in a cup of water, reduced to half and taken internally. Alternatively, hot infusion of cinnamon, fresh ginger mixed with natural cane sugar will help.
- In Nausea, Vomiting and Bloating, oral administration of ginger, asafoetida, lemon and rock salt is beneficial.
- In Anorexia, Loss of appetite, Dyspepsia fresh ginger is given with rock salt before meals.
- For flatulence, fresh ginger juice mixed with jaggery can be given before meals.
- In Colic and heaviness of abdomen, dry ginger powder mixed with long pepper powder and hot water is administered.
- In Acute Stomach-ache, ginger powder mixed with natural cane sugar is administered with warm water.
- For Indigestion, either ginger powder with warm water or fresh ginger juice and lemon juice with rock salt are administered.
- In Diarrhoea due to indigestion, Ginger powder is administered.
- For high cholesterol or high triglycerides, fresh ginger can be taken with garlic daily.
Care should be taken while administering fresh ginger in people having menorrhagia, haemorrhage, bleeding haemorrhoids and hyperacidity. Also ginger should be used in low amounts during pregnancy, lactation and in children.