LATIN NAME: Zingiber officinale
GENERAL DESCRIPTION: Characterized by delicate yellow blooms rimmed with purple, ginger not only is a valued culinary seasoning but also is considered in many cultures a remedy for a range of ailments. Discovered by practitioners of traditional Ayurvedic (Hindu) medicine, the ginger root was originally thought of as a digestive aid. Today both Chinese and Western herbalists believe it relieves motion sickness and dizziness and improves digestion. Ginger is also believed to alleviate menstrual cramps. Its active constituents are gingerols, which soothe the abdomen and relieve excess gas. In China, ginger, called gan-jian, is applied to first- and second-degree burns. It is described in traditional Chinese medicine as acrid and warm.
- Some Western studies show that ginger may help prevent heart disease and strokes by reducing internal blood clotting and lowering blood pressure.
- If you are pregnant, consult an herbalist or a licensed healthcare professional before using.
- Vomiting, abdominal pain, menstrual irregularity, coughs. (Take internally.)
- First- and second-degree burns. (Apply externally.)
Western: Motion sickness, morning sickness, digestive disorders, menstrual cramps, colds, flu, arthritis, elevated cholesterol level, high blood pressure. (Take internally.)
SIDE EFFECTS/Not serious:
Heartburn may result from taking ginger.