Ginger is a plant with yellowish-green flowers and leafy stems, primarily grown in warmer parts of China, Japan, and India. It is being produced more and more in the Middle East for medicinal purposes. Ginger is used fresh, powdered, dried, or as an oil or juice.
Most of us know of ginger as a spice; the ginger spice comes from the plant’s roots. You may have heard it called ginger root, or simply ginger. It is a very common ingredient in recipes. In foods and beverages, ginger is used for flavoring. The distinctive fragrance and flavor of the root come from its natural oils, often used as a fragrance for soaps and cosmetics.
Ginger is commonly used for various stomach problems, including morning sickness, motion and seasickness, upset stomach, gas, diarrhea, irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), colic, vertigo and nausea. One of the chemicals in ginger is used as an ingredient in antacid, laxative and anti-gas medications.
Because ginger contains chemicals that may reduce inflammation, it is not hard to believe that it effectively reduces muscle pain and exercise-induced muscle soreness. Studies show that taking ginger by mouth works as well for pain in hip and knee osteoarthritis as drugs such as ibuprofen. Some research also shows that applying ginger gel or oil to the knee can relieve osteoarthritis pain.
One last note on ginger’s many benefits – some people pour the fresh juice on their skin to treat burns or apply the ginger extract to the skin to prevent insect bites.
The next time you see that crazy-looking root in your local grocery store, take note! Ginger is not just for cooking anymore. Reap the anti-inflammatory benefits as well!
Some of our customer favorites from our anti-inflammatory meal delivery service, Feed Your Vitality included ginger. Try this recipe and see for yourself how delicious ginger can be! And check out other recipes including ginger here!
Sesame Ginger Vinaigrette
- ½ cup grapeseed oil
- ¼ cup rice vinegar
- 2 tsp minced scallions
- 1 tsp minced fresh ginger
- 1 tsp sesame oil
- 1 tsp honey
- ¾ tsp salt
- Add all ingredients to a blender or food processor until smooth. Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks.
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