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5 Health Benefits of Ginger

 

Ginger is native to southeast Asia, originating from countries such as Thailand, Malaysia and Indonesia to name a few. The actual ginger plant (flower and leaves) is a herb, while the root (the most commonly used part) is considered a spice. Ginger root is widely used in many Asian and western recipes but the benefits of ginger go beyond adding delicious flavour to your favourite foods. Ginger is also greatly used for its health benefits and medicinal properties. 


Here are 5 health benefits of ginger and why you should incorporate more of it into your diet and cooking:

 

1. Weight loss

Research into ginger benefits has shown that it can contribute to being more satisfied and fuller after eating. Studies have shown that ginger is great for suppressing appetite when it’s either consumed within meals or as a drink (ginger tea, for example). This is good when it comes to weight loss, controlling portions and consistency when eating healthier meals and maintaining a healthier lifestyle. 

When added as a regular part of your diet, ginger is also very beneficial for sustaining satisfaction when you are eating a reduced or low calorie diet. 

2. Blood Sugar Levels

Ginger is also considered to be effective at treating and relieving the symptoms of high blood sugar levels. It helps by stimulating the production of insulin (hormones which help to balance blood sugar levels) in those who are diabetic or are insulin resistant (when the body does not effectively use insulin).


Recent studies have shown that ginger can help to lower fasting blood sugar levels when used in moderation. With some claims stating that consuming up to 4g of ginger per day can provide the optimum results in regulating blood sugar levels. 

3. Nausea

Whether related to pregnancy, chemotherapy or simply motion-sickness, nausea is known to be treated or alleviated through the consumption of ginger. It works by blocking the natural chemicals and hormones in the body that trigger symptoms of nausea and sickness such as stomach contractions and vomiting reflex. To the ordinary person, it’s not widely known how or why ginger works in this way, however, many have attested to its effectiveness and it’s certainly worth a try.  

 4. Indigestion

Aiding the process of digestion and salvia flow is another health benefit of ginger. Ginger is known as a good carminative, helping to eliminate excess gas from the digestive system, and soothes the intestinal tract. Therefore ginger helps with relieving the symptoms of pain and discomfort in the stomach commonly experienced by those who may be gluten intolerant or celiac. 

 5. Fight against colds and flu

Ginger, with it’s antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties is also well known for its ability to aid the relief of symptoms when suffering from colds and fly. It is typically used in smoothies, juices, tea and other warm drinks to help ease symptoms such as soar throats,  nasal congestion and reducing inflammation.

The wonderful thing about ginger, is that while it can be added to food and drinks for healing purposes, it still remains spicy and pungent. Pairing well with ingredients such as honey and lemons to fight against the symptoms of flu. Therefore, it’s always a good idea to increase your intake of ginger, whether in meals or drinks, during the colder months.


Add ginger to your Asian cooking

With such a wide range of health and medicinal uses, it seems that the health benefits of ginger are almost endless. Used in many cuisines across the world, ginger adds more than just the subtly sweet, peppery and pungent aroma to a range of popular foods. It is also adding a greater feeling of fullness, contributing to more balanced blood sugar levels and promoting a healthier digestive system. All the many more reasons to add ginger to your Asian cooking. 

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