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  • Dr. David Della Morte Canosci

GINGER: BENEFITS AND PROPERTIES

Thanks to its countless beneficial properties, ginger is a plant widely known and used in the East and in Northern Europe.


Today, it is an ingredient mainly used to flavour the dishes of many cuisines also in the West but there is more.


In fact, recent studies have confirmed the benefits of this plant: it accelerates the consumption of fats, it helps the body to dispose of toxins and to relieve stress, thanks to its toning properties that act on headaches and fatigue.


GINGER USES

Together with turmeric and cardamom, ginger is part of the Zingiberaceae family and, because of its positive effects, it is used in phytotherapy to treat gastro-intestinal disorders.



Let's see now, in detail, which areas of the body benefit the most from this plant:


  • the stomach; ginger reduces gastric acidity due to the substances contained in it (such as gingerol and shogaol), it works as a sort of gastroprotectant, it accelerates digestive processes and it reduces the presence of gas.

  • muscles; ginger has analgesic properties that allow to reduce the perception of pain, even the articulatory one.

  • ginger fights free radicals and, consequently, cellular aging.

  • ginger is also a valid help for the Immune System, because it prevents seasonal ailments or it can be used – thanks to gingerol – as an expectorant and to calm coughs. It is also used to reduce irritation always by virtue of its analgesic properties.

  • ginger is used against headaches and seasickness; in fact, chewing a piece of ginger can help in case of headaches because its root contains natural narcotic substances and even antihistamines. It is even useful against nausea during pregnancy and its intake does not involve particular contraindications.

  • ginger soothes menstrual pain, especially when it comes to ‘dysmenorrhea’ – i.e. a more intense pain than annoying cramping.

  • ginger acts on stress thanks to its relaxing properties.

  • ginger reduces the stimulus of hunger, increasing the sense of satiety, and helps to dissolve fat. For this reason, it is often used in low-calorie diets.


Obviously, the properties are really effective if you combine the intake of ginger with a healthy lifestyle and an adequate diet.


GINGER IN THE KITCHEN

The daily doses of ginger should not exceed 10-30 grams of fresh product or, alternatively, 3-4 grams of dried powder because of the high concentration of its beneficial substances.


Depending on your needs, you can prepare:

  • infusions to prevent or alleviate seasonal ailments (such as colds and congestion), adding cloves and cinnamon or lemon only. In this case, the throat will benefit together with whole organism, because lemon amplifies the purifying properties of ginger. Moreover, these are excellent remedies also for those who want to improve attention.

  • essential oils to be inhaled – taking advantage of its toning properties – or to be mixed with other oils such as almond oils. In this case, very little ginger is needed.


As previously mentioned, ginger is used in cooking to flavour different dishes because it is extremely versatile: the taste is similar to the lemon one but it adds a spicy note. Particularly, it is used in dishes based on:

  • fish

  • meat

  • vegetables

  • soups

  • rice


It is mixed with oil to flavour legumes, bread and focaccia, while grated and squeezed to dress salads of oranges, fennel, grapefruit, endive, cabbage and more.


Finally, ginger is used mainly in the United States as a non-alcoholic drink for aperitifs and dinners: ginger ale is a soft drink, a must in Anglo-Saxon culture, not to be confused with ginger beer, which is instead a fermented drink and as such slightly alcoholic.


There are also other spices that our body can benefit from. Palazzo Fiuggi also recommends reading HEALTHY & BEAUTIFUL: 5 SPICES TO IMPROVE YOUR BEAUTY GLOW (palazzofiuggi.com).


Undoubtedly, ginger has numerous beneficial properties but it must not be abused. In fact, if used for therapeutic purposes in an excessive way and for a prolonged period of time, it can cause the opposite of the intended effect. For this reason, it is still advisable to consult a doctor before taking it.


We want to remind you, once again, that acquiring a healthy lifestyle and a balanced diet is essential for improving the well-being of the entire body. At Palazzo Fiuggi, you will find experts ready to help you achieve this goal.