Ginger Contains Gingerol, a Substance With Powerful Medicinal Properties
Ginger is a flowering plant that originated from China.
It belongs to the Zingiberaceae family, and is closely related to turmeric, cardomon and galangal.
The rhizome (underground part of the stem) is the part commonly used as a spice. It is often called ginger root, or simply ginger.
Ginger has a very long history of use in various forms of traditional/alternative medicine. It has been used to help digestion, reduce nausea and help fight the flu and common cold, to name a few.
Ginger Can Treat Many Forms of Nausea, Especially Morning Sickness
Ginger appears to be highly effective against nausea (2).
For example, it has a long history of use as a sea sickness remedy, and there is some evidence that it may be as effective as prescription medication (3).
Ginger may also relieve nausea and vomiting after surgery, and in cancer patients undergoing chemotherapy (4, 5).
But it may be the most effective when it comes to pregnancy-related nausea, such as morning sickness.
Ginger has been shown to be effective against exercise-induced muscle pain.
In one study, consuming 2 grams of ginger per day, for 11 days, significantly reduced muscle pain in people performing elbow exercises (7).
Ginger does not have an immediate impact, but may be effective at reducing the day-to-day progression of muscle pain (8).
These effects are believed to be mediated by the anti-inflammatory properties.
Osteoarthritis is a common health problem.
It involves degeneration of the joints in the body, leading to symptoms like joint pain and stiffness.
In a controlled trial of 247 people with osteoarthritis of the knee, those who took ginger extract had less pain and required less pain medication (9).
Another study found that a combination of ginger, mastic, cinnamon and sesame oil, can reduce pain and stiffness in osteoarthritis patients when applied topically