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Ranked one of nature’s top antioxidants, this natural anti-inflammatory offers a host of benefits for both your body and brain, dietician Noluthando Mabuza advises
What health benefits can you get from ginger?
Research proves ginger may be effective in the management of different cancers, including lung, breast; ovarian and pancreatic cancer. In addition, this anti-inflammatory helps relieve pregnancy- related nausea and regulate chemotherapy-related nausea when used with conventional anti-nausea medication, Mabuza says.
It’s also beneficial to managing non-alcoholic fatty liver disease, asthma, bacterial and fungal infection as it has an antibacterial, antioxidant and anti-parasitic effect.
“It’s an anti-inflammatory, so it helps relieve menstrual, muscle and joint pain, she says.
“Its thermogenic (heat producing) properties are full of positive impacts on metabolism and fat storage. It also reduces dizziness, and enhances fat digestion and absorption.”
How can you incorporate ginger into your daily/ weekly meal plan?
Ginger can be used fresh, dried, in a tablet or capsule form or as liquid extracts, and teas. It acts as a flavouring agent in foods, beverages and soaps. Although, incorporating it in every meal may be a hassle, you can opt for smoothies and include ginger; bearing in mind that fresh smoothies make for some of the most nutritious and easy-to-prepare meals you can indulge on.
What is the recommended daily intake?
Typically, dosages of 1-3 g are used as a preventative treatment for nausea. This applies to morning sickness in pregnancy, queasiness and chemotherapy-related nausea.
For other uses of ginger, 1g is typically used. It can be ingested in several ways.
The University of Maryland Medical Center (USA) advises that adults limit their intake of ginger root to no more than 4 grams daily. This includes ginger root consumed from food sources, such as ginger bread and ginger ale.
Children between the ages of two to six may not consume more than 2 mg of ginger root each day, bearing in mind that the intake depends on the child’s body weight. Always consult your health professional before giving your child ginger root to ensure you provide your child with the correct dose. Pregnant women should not take more than 1 gram of ginger root daily.
How effective is it on your overall health?
Ginger contains over 25 antioxidants; its antioxidant content actually supersedes what you may find commonly in fruit and vegetables.
According to Ancient Chinese tradition, it is believed that much of its powers come from its ability to bring fluids to an area, warming it up. The heat produced through its thermogenic properties along with more secretions and sweating excretes toxins and microbes. Immunity is increased due to the increase in white cells, and improved circulation spreads the improved healing powers throughout the body.