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Ginger Power for diarrhea and vertigo

Ginger (Zingiber officinale) is known to have major therapeutic properties and is an essential part of many systems of traditional medicine all over the world. It occupies an important place in the traditional medicine of India, China, Thailand, and Malaysia, to name a few countries. Some of the ailments that ginger is reputed to cure are nausea, indigestion, flatulence, common cold, diarrhea, dyspepsia, and vertigo.

Scientific research is presently being carried out in various laboratories around the world to research and document the various medicinal properties of this herb. One of the main areas of this research is in testing the effectiveness of ginger in treating nausea.
This property of ginger has a tremendous scope in treating patients who are undergoing cancer treatment. Cancer drugs induce nausea in patients and at present the allopathic drug metoclopramide is used to treat these symptoms. However, metoclopramide also has some unwanted side effects. Studies have shown that ginger is ten times as effective as metoclopramide and does not cause any unwanted side effects. This medicinal property of the plant also has strong implications in post-surgery treatments, and in the treatment of motion sickness and air sickness.  Thai researchers are also currently at work to explore the anti-cholesterol effects of ginger. Once the results of this research have been verified it could bring about a revolution in the manufacture of anti-cholesterol medication.

This spate of research on the humble ginger herb brings to the spotlight the need for countries to research and develop alternative drugs based on natural ingredients to supplement and, in some cases, even replace allopathic medication. Drugs synthesized from natural ingredients have fewer side effects and are more inexpensive to produce.

It is a well known fact that ginger is a perennial plant, which has a ling and thick twisted stem. This stem is used all around the world for cooking and other medicinal purposes. In fact, ginger has been commonly used all over the world, for over 5,000 years now, mainly due to its medicinal and culinary benefits. However, unlike other herbs and spices, the part of the ginger plant that has the highest medicinal value, is the part of the stem that grows under the ground. Hence, even though people use the term “ginger root”, it is actually the subterranean stem, rather than the root which is being used. Some of the common forms that this stem is available in include ginger, ginger paste, ginger powder and so on. However, in today’s world, most people are only aware of the benefits of ginger for digestive purposes, when used in cooking. There are several other ginger medicinal benefits that people do not know of.

Ginger health benefits

There are numerous health benefits of ginger powder, which is why people add this ingredient to their daily cooking, or even to tea. Some of the most well known dry ginger powder benefits include:

  • Alleviating excessive gas, bloating and other minor digestive problems
  • Reducing inflammation, since ginger powder contains an element known as gingerol
  • Relieving nausea, caused by motion sickness and chemotherapy; however, women who are pregnant are generally asked to avoid this ingredient because of any potential ginger side effects on the fetus
  • Soothing a cough and a cold, due to its warming effect on the body.
  • Stimulating the circulation of blood, when applied in the form of a paste, which also helps relieve aches, pains and muscle strains

Contrary to what many people believe, the benefits of fresh ginger exceed the benefits of ginger powder. Given below are some of the common benefits of fresh ginger: s

  • Protecting the body against allergies, since it acts as an antihistamine
  • Treating conditions, such as rheumatoid arthritis, osteoarthritis, or other similar muscular problems, since it contains anti-inflammatory properties. In fact, there are several doctors too, that may prescribe ginger, instead of other NSAIDS.
  • Facilitating the digestion process, which can help relieve abdominal cramps
  • Lowering the levels of bad cholesterol in the body, which in turn prevents the formation of blood clots

In spite of all the ginger powder benefits, as well as the benefits of fresh ginger, it is highly recommended at all people consult a doctor, for the recommended dosage of the herb, to avoid any health problems that could arise from an overdose. Even though ginger side effects are rare, they could occur in case large doses of this spice are consumed. The possible side effects of a ginger overdose include belching, heartburn, and a bad taste in the mouth, gas or even diarrhea. Ginger also lowers the levels of blood sugar and increases the functioning of insulin. Therefore, diabetics who are on medication should take limited quantities of ginger. People suffering from any medical condition, as well as pregnant women should consult a doctor to know how much ginger is safe for them.

Submitted on January 16, 2014