10 Health Benefits of Ginger: Effect on Nausea, the Brain & More

Written by Resurchify | Updated on: February 15, 2023

10 Health Benefits of Ginger: Effect on Nausea, the Brain & More

Over the past few years, there has been a noticeable rise in the usage of alternative or "natural" treatments. On the premise that these drugs will have a positive effect, an increasing number of older persons (i.e., baby boomers) are utilising complementary and alternative medicine nutritional supplements and herbal medicines without consulting a doctor. This may not be a safe or wise course of action, though.


For instance, a recent survey at least suggested that there was a serious issue with herbal and chemotherapeutic drug interactions in cancer patients. Moreover, it was noted that at least 50% of the herbal treatments used by these patients lacked studies supporting any potential interactions.

In recent years, there has been a noticeable rise in interest in ginger or its many components as effective preventive or therapeutic agents. At the same time, there has also been an increase in scientific research examining the pharmacological and physiological effects of ginger. Previous analyses have underlined the value of thorough scientific investigation in determining the efficiency and safety of prospective medicinal plant remedies as well as the advantages and disadvantages of herbal medicine. Since earlier times, ginger has been used to cure a wide variety of conditions, including colds, nausea, arthritis, migraines, and hypertension. Numerous reviews have been done on the pharmacological, chemical, and therapeutic effects of ginger.

Origin Of Ginger

A family of plants that also comprises cardamom and turmeric includes ginger. The gingerols in particular, which seem to be the principal component of ginger examined in much of the health-related scientific studies, are the primary cause of its pungent scent. The primary part of ginger that is consumed is the rhizome, which is the horizontal stem from which the roots grow. Although ginger has been known by its Middle English name, gingivere, for more than three thousand years it was known by the Sanskrit term srngaveram, which, based on its outward appearance, meant "horn root." It was known as zinziberi in Latin and ziggiberis in Greek. It's interesting to note that ginger doesn't naturally grow in the wild, and its true ancestry is unknown.

The ginger plant is now grown throughout the humid tropics, with India being the most significant producer. Ginger is thought to have been produced by Indians and Chinese for more than 5000 years as a tonic root to heal a variety of diseases. Long before history was properly documented, ginger was utilised as a flavour. Over 2000 years ago, it was exported from India to the Roman Empire as a very significant piece of trade, and it was highly prized for its therapeutic qualities. Even after the fall of the Roman Empire, ginger remained a highly valued item in Europe. For ages, Arab traders dominated the trade in ginger and other spices.

Bioactive Components Of Ginger

Different analytical techniques have helped to identify at least 115 different components in both fresh and dried ginger variants. While shogaols, which are the main gingerol dehydration products, are more prevalent in dry ginger than in fresh ginger, gingerols, which are the main constituents of fresh ginger, are found in slightly lower amounts in dry ginger. The methanolic crude extracts of fresh ginger rhizome have been used to identify at least 31 chemicals related to gingerol. There are at least 14 different bioactive substances that have been isolated from ginger, including [4]-gingerol, [6]-gingerol, [8]-gingerol, [10]-gingerol, [6]-paradol, [14]-shogaol, [6]-shogaol, 1-dehydro-[10]-gingerdione, [10]-gingerdione, hexahydrocurcumin, rmacies and health food outlets produced some unsettling findings.

10 Health Benefits Of Ginger

Ginger As An Anti-Nausea Agent

The most typical and well-known application of ginger throughout history has probably been to treat nausea and vomiting. The advantages and risks of using herbs to treat liver and gastrointestinal distress have been examined, and multiple controlled trials have found that ginger works well as an antiemetic in general. Ginger's ability to break up and evacuate intestinal gas through its carminative impact has been linked to its usefulness as an antiemetic. The outcomes of randomised, double-blind research conducted on healthy volunteers who indicated that ginger significantly sped up stomach emptying and induced antral contractions validated this theory.

The majority of pregnant women experience nausea and vomiting, and ginger has long been used to treat this illness. According to at least one poll, few pregnant women appear to utilise dietary supplements regularly, however, ginger is frequently suggested and used to treat motion sickness. It has been proven via numerous double-blind, randomised, placebo-controlled research investigations that ingesting ginger can safely and effectively assist to reduce morning sickness and vomiting during pregnancy. Randomized trials show that ginger consumption for treating nausea or vomiting or both in early pregnancy has very few or no negative side effects and look to be beneficial, even though it might not be as strong as some treatments.

Ginger As An Anti-Carcinogenic Agent

The potential cancer therapeutic uses of ginger and its different components are currently the subject of intense interest from several research groups, including our own. Previous reviews have covered a variety of elements of the chemopreventive effects of a variety of phytochemical foods and medicines, including ginger. Numerous forms of ginger, including a crude or imperfectly purified extract, gingerols, particularly [6]-gingerol, shogaols, particularly [6]-shogaol, and zerumbone, a sesquiterpene compound derived from ginger as well as several minor components and metabolites, were the focus of studies on their anticancer properties. Numerous cancer types, including lymphoma, hepatoma, colorectal cancer, breast cancer, skin cancer, liver cancer, and bladder cancer, have been studied to see whether ginger is useful in preventing or restraining the growth of cancer.

It has been noted that ginger and its components prevent the growth of tumours in mouse skin. In particular, the two-stage initiation-promotion mouse skin model has shown gingerol to be a highly efficient anticancer drug in the skin in vivo. In this model, DMBA is used just once to start a tumour, and then TPA is applied repeatedly starting a few days later. The incidence of DMBA-initiated/TPA-promoted cutaneous papilloma formation was reduced in female ICR mice with their backs shaved, while TPA-induced epidermal ornithine decarboxylase activity and inflammation were repressed.

Cardio-Vascular Diseases- Preventive Effect

In addition to its effects on cancer, some research suggests that ginger may also have preventative effects on cardiovascular health and several other chronic problems. The anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, antiplatelet, hypotensive, and hypolipidemic properties of ginger have drawn attention due to its potential to treat many aspects of cardiovascular disease. In vitro and animal research supporting these properties have been reviewed. Human experiments are less convincing, though, and additional research is required. Due to an apparent correlation between ginger and documented cases of increased risk of bleeding after surgery or if taken with anticoagulant medications like warfarin, caution has been advised when taking ginger and other herbal extracts.

An efficient method of preventing coronary heart disease is antiplatelet treatment. An alternative to aspirin, which is typically employed in this method, ginger components are proposed as a potential new family of platelet-activation inhibitors without the risk of side effects. Ginger compounds were found to be less effective than aspirin in suppressing arachidonic acid-induced platelet release and aggregation as well as COX activity. This was based on a comparison of gingerols and analogues with aspirin. However, a number of the analogues showed a sizable inhibitory impact, indicating that more gingerol analogues with increased potency might be useful as a substitute for aspirin therapy in the treatment of ischemic heart disease.

Acts As An Antioxidant

Numerous diseases are linked to oxidative stress, and ginger's antioxidant qualities are a typical mechanism frequently advanced to explain its actions and health advantages. Ginger was found to reduce oxidative stress markers associated with ageing and was proposed as a preventative measure for ethanol-induced hepatotoxicity by reducing oxidative effects in ethanol-treated rats. Only pomegranate and several kinds of berries have a higher concentration of total antioxidants than ginger root (3.85 mmol/100 g). By activating either the xanthine oxidase system or the nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide phosphate (NADPH) oxidase system, or both, the phorbol ester 12-O-tetradecanoylphorbol-13-acetate (TPA) causes oxidative stress. In both Chinese hamster ovary, AS52 cells and human promyelocytic leukaemia (HL)-60 cells, ginger has been shown to reduce TPA-induced oxidative stress.

In mice exposed to gamma radiation, ginger extract has been shown to have radioprotective properties. These benefits were linked to reduced lipid peroxidation and protection of GSH levels. Additionally, pretreatment with [6]-gingerol reduced UVB-induced oxidative stress and activated caspase-3, -8, and -9. Evidence supports the idea that ginger and some of its constituents act as potent antioxidants in vitro. The precise method and cellular targets are yet unknown, and it is unclear whether the physiological action happens in humans in vivo.

Use Of Ginger As A Traditional Medicine

In China and India, ginger has been used medicinally and as a spice for centuries. For its therapeutic qualities, it was also well-known throughout Europe starting in the ninth century and England starting in the tenth. Native Americans also utilised the rhizome of wild ginger to control menstruation and heart rate. To relieve nausea, ginger is supposed to work directly on the digestive tract. To avoid nausea brought on by chemotherapy, motion sickness, and surgery, it is utilised. An effective treatment for morning sickness during pregnancy is ginger. Other GI issues include morning sickness, colic, upset stomach, gas, bloating, heartburn, flatulence, diarrhoea, loss of appetite, and dyspepsia, which are all treated with ginger (discomfort after eating).

In addition to these, arthritis, muscle aches, chest discomfort, low back pain, stomach pain, and menstruation pain have all been said to be relieved by ginger. It can be used to treat bronchitis, coughing, and upper respiratory tract infections. It is advised for joint issues as an anti-inflammatory medication. Burns on the skin can be treated with freshly squeezed ginger juice. Ginger's active ingredient is used as an antacid and laxative. Additionally, it warms the body to improve circulation and reduce blood pressure. Ginger functions as an antiviral for the treatment of colds and flu because of its warming impact.

Helps In Weight Loss

Based on the spice being consumed in food or beverages or taken as a supplement, 60 investigations on ginger have been conducted. According to the research, customers may be shielded against obesity and some chronic diseases by using the traditional herb. Health experts think that including this spice in the diets of overweight individuals is shrewd, even though there is no set amount recommended to prevent these health problems. Due to a lack of funding, only 10 of the cited studies involved humans, however, these studies were nonetheless taken into account for concluding. Ginger was employed in human research in a variety of ways, including capsules, tablets, and drinks like ginger tea.

One-fourth of the world's population today suffers from the health issue known as metabolic syndrome. High-risk elements for type 2 diabetes and heart disease are present in this disorder. Ginger has a long history of use as a spice and as a herbal medicine for treating a wide range of illnesses. This, according to researchers, is mainly because of the phytochemicals and antioxidants this potent spice contains.

Ginger has been demonstrated to treat dyspepsia, a condition that produces pain because the stomach takes longer than usual to discharge its contents. A study involving 24 healthy participants found that ingesting ginger powder before food reduced this issue at a rate of 50%.Without eating better meals and engaging in at least moderate exercise, drinking ginger tea alone is probably not going to lead to satisfactory weight loss. But studies have shown that ginger does help with hunger control and digestion. It is advised to consume one cup of ginger tea every day before meals to help with weight loss. Furthermore, it's crucial to drink the tea when it's still hot, but no more than 4 grammes of ginger should be utilised in a single day. Overusing the spice may result in stomach distress or heartburn. Ginger interacts with the efficacy of blood-thinning medications, so people who take them should avoid using them to treat gallstones.

Helps To Relieve Menstrual Cramps

According to research, ginger's active ingredients may reduce inflammation by preventing the body from producing prostaglandins (a class of pro-inflammatory chemicals involved in triggering the muscular contractions that aid in the uterus's lining-shedding process). Because the onset of menstrual cramps appears to be associated, it is thought that consuming ginger as a dietary supplement or drinking ginger tea would help reduce menstruation pain to the excessive production of prostaglandins.

Recent research suggests that ginger may be useful for treating dysmenorrhea (the medical term for pain before or during menstruation). For example, researchers examined earlier studies examining the effects of ginger in women with dysmenorrhea not brought on by pelvic disorders like endometriosis for a publication that was published in Pain Medicine in 2015. The report's authors conducted an investigation and discovered that was superior to placebo at reducing pain.

Effect Of Ginger On the Brain

For many ages, people have used ginger (the rhizome of Zingiber officinale Roscoe) in cooking and as a medicine to treat a variety of illnesses. Anti-inflammatory, antihyperglycemic, antiarthritic, antiemetic, and neuroprotective activities are some of ginger's key pharmacological qualities. Recent research has shown that ginger dramatically improves cognitive performance in both healthy brains and those with different types of cognitive impairments. The molecular mechanisms behind ginger-mediated improvement in cognition, whether in healthy or diseased brains, have not yet been investigated. In the current work, we used a model of scopolamine-induced memory deficits and normal animals to evaluate the memory-improving effects of dried ginger extract (GE) using a novel object recognition test.

Ginger and its components are essential neuroprotectors. The precise mode of action of ginger in this situation is not entirely understood. However, it is thought that ginger's neuroprotective properties come from its phenolic and flavonoid components. A noteworthy study found that 6-shogaol suppresses microglia, which is beneficial for neuroprotection in acute global ischemia. Another discovery that supports ginger's role as a neuroprotector shows that it has this effect by boosting the brain's natural antioxidant defences and bringing MDA levels in diabetic rats back to normal. According to a recent study on ginger juice, ginger has protective effects by lowering LPO and raising GSH, SOD, CAT, GPx, GST, GR, and QR levels in treated rats. It also increases protein levels.

Antimicrobial Activity Of Ginger

Drug resistance is on the rise everywhere and is thought to be the main reason why treatments don't work. Antibiotics are an efficient kind of treatment for bacteria and other microorganisms, but they can also have negative side effects. Researchers in the past have demonstrated that ginger and its compounds are essential in stopping microbial development or function as antimicrobial agents. Ginger exhibits antibacterial efficacy against Salmonella typhi, E. coli, and Bacillus subtilis, according to a significant study in its favour. An ethanolic extract of ginger demonstrated the broadest zone of inhibition against Salmonella typhi. Several substances found in ginger rhizomes have antibacterial and antifungal properties. Shagelol and gingerol are recognised as the most potent ingredients.

Both men and women around the world struggle with peptic ulcers. Gastric ulcers can be caused by several things, such as the chemicals in food, stress, Helicobacter pylori, and medications. Numerous medicinal herbs and their compounds exhibit an anti-ulcer action in a variety of ways, but the precise mechanism is still unclear. Through boosting mucin secretion, ginger and its components have a critical function in ulcer prevention. Previous research has demonstrated that ginger has anti-ulcerative properties in experimental gastric ulcer models.

Anti-inflammatory Effect

Interleukin-1 (IL-1), tumour necrosis factor (TNF), and anti-inflammatory cytokines are a few of the mediators involved in the complex immunological process of inflammation. Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medicines are being used often to treat inflammation, although they have a stomach ulcer side effect. Different medicinal plants and their active ingredients have demonstrated a crucial role in the reduction of inflammatory processes. An earlier study found that rats given ginger oil (33 mg/kg) orally for 26 days demonstrated a considerable reduction in the swelling of the paws and joints that is seen in severe chronic adjuvant arthritis. The regulation or prevention of the synthesis of pro-inflammatory cytokines like IL-1, TNF-, and IL-8 is another important function of ginger.

Researchers have proposed that ginger's capacity to block the formation of prostaglandin and leukotriene may be responsible for its anti-inflammatory properties. Others have demonstrated how gingerols actively block arachidonate 5-lipoxygenase, an enzyme involved in the production of leukotrienes. It has been demonstrated that [8]-gingerol, but not [6]-gingerol, inhibits COX-2 expression, which is activated during inflammation to boosting prostaglandin production. Others have also stated that ginger extract inhibits the production of COX-2 and the activation of tumour necrosis factor (TNF) in human synoviocytes.


Ginger has been used for thousands of years as a medical herb to cure a wide range of illnesses in addition to being a very popular dietary condiment for food flavouring. Ginger is made up of hundreds of different chemicals and metabolites, according to chemical and metabolic investigations. The bioactive substances gingerols and shogaols, particularly gingerol and shogaol, have each been the subject of the most research. Each component's composition is influenced by the ginger rhizome's treatment and source. Over the past few years, there has been a noticeable increase in the amount of research being done to understand how natural substances can prevent disease.

Research findings substantiate the many reports of ginger's potency as an antinausea agent and as a potential colon cancer preventive substance by showing that ginger and its contents accumulate in the gastrointestinal system. In vitro and ex vivo studies have shown ginger to be an effective antioxidant, however, there aren't any clear in vivo data and few known targets or processes. Ginger is thought to have anti-inflammatory properties by inhibiting COX-2, which thus prevents the creation of prostaglandins and leukotrienes. On the other hand, there is significant disagreement in the evidence for ginger's ability to reduce arthritis-related pain and swelling. Ginger is most frequently used to treat nausea and vomiting brought on by pregnancy, chemotherapy, and some forms of surgery.



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