Health Benefits of

ginger

Also known as Zingiber officinale Roscoe, ginger is a famous herbaceous plant used as a culinary and medicinal ingredient for a long time. The healing properties of ginger reside within its rhizome or root. Ginger contains a mix of vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and other substances that are essential for the health of an individual. [1] The topical benefits of ginger and ginger oil are listed below.

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Ginger for Osteoarthritis

Osteoarthritis can be defined as the wear and tear of articular cartilage that lines the joints. This chronic condition causes joint pain and affects the quality of life. Topical ginger compress provides pain relief in patients suffering from osteoarthritis. The compounds responsible for this anti-inflammatory property of ginger include gingerols, shogoals, and paradols. They inhibit the key enzymes of inflammation, lipoxygenase, and cyclooxygenase 2 (COX-2). This reduces the production of inflammatory mediators, which in turn alleviate pain in osteoarthritis. [2, 3

Ginger for Chronic Lower Back Pain

Analgesic and anti-inflammatory properties of ginger are also beneficial for treating chronic lower back pain, that lasts longer than 3 months. Diluted ginger essential oil composed of 2% ginger oil and 10 ml jojoba oil has shown improvement in pain intensity and disability in the affected individuals. [4]

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Figure 2 The graph demonstrates the effect of allicin on different strains of Staphylococcus aureus and the diameter of the zone of inhibition. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/15250668/ 

Ginger Extract for Muscle Soreness

Sore muscles are a common outcome of excessive muscular activity such as intense exercise. Application of ginger extract on the affected muscles reduces muscle ache and soreness. [5]

Ginger Promotes Skin Healing

The healing properties of ginger are beneficial for injured and aged skin. Ginger contains antioxidants that protect the skin from free radical damage. Gingerol is a compound in the ginger extract that induces the formation of new blood vessels and promotes wound healing. The anti-inflammatory properties of ginger play a significant role in reducing the visible signs of aging. [6]

Antimicrobial Property of Ginger

The ginger essential oil has lipophilic properties that increase permeability and lead to loss of integrity in fungal membranes, thus protecting from fungal infections. Ginger also suppresses biofilm formation and prevents the organisms from adhering to the body surfaces. [7]

References

  1. Anh NH, Kim SJ, Long NP, Min JE, Yoon YC, Lee EG, Kim M, Kim TJ, Yang YY, Son EY, Yoon SJ, Diem NC, Kim HM, Kwon SW. Ginger on Human Health: A Comprehensive Systematic Review of 109 Randomized Controlled Trials. Nutrients. 2020 Jan 6;12(1):157. doi: 10.3390/nu12010157. PMID: 31935866; PMCID: PMC7019938.

  2. Therkleson T. Topical Ginger Treatment With a Compress or Patch for Osteoarthritis Symptoms. J Holist Nurs. 2014 Sep;32(3):173-82. doi: 10.1177/0898010113512182. Epub 2013 Dec 4. PMID: 24305660; PMCID: PMC4230973.

  3. Bartels EM, Folmer VN, Bliddal H, Altman RD, Juhl C, Tarp S, Zhang W, Christensen R. Efficacy and safety of ginger in osteoarthritis patients: a meta-analysis of randomized placebo-controlled trials. Osteoarthritis Cartilage. 2015 Jan;23(1):13-21. doi: 10.1016/j.joca.2014.09.024. Epub 2014 Oct 7. PMID: 25300574.

  4. Rondanelli M, Fossari F, Vecchio V, Gasparri C, Peroni G, Spadaccini D, Riva A, Petrangolini G, Iannello G, Nichetti M, Infantino V, Perna S. Clinical trials on pain lowering effect of ginger: A narrative review. Phytother Res. 2020 Nov;34(11):2843-2856. doi: 10.1002/ptr.6730. Epub 2020 May 20. PMID: 32436242; PMCID: PMC7754412.

  5. Manimmanakorn N, Manimmanakorn A, Boobphachart D, Thuwakum W, Laupattarakasem W, Hamlin MJ. Effects of Zingiber cassumunar (Plai cream) in the treatment of delayed onset muscle soreness. J Integr Med. 2016 Mar;14(2):114-20. doi: 10.1016/S2095-4964(16)60243-1. PMID: 26988432.

  6. Kazerouni A, Kazerouni O, Pazyar N. Effects of Ginger (Zingiber officinale) on Skin Conditions: A Non Quantitative Review Article. J Turk Acad Dermatol 2013;7.

  7. Mao QQ, Xu XY, Cao SY, Gan RY, Corke H, Beta T, Li HB. Bioactive Compounds and Bioactivities of Ginger (Zingiber officinale Roscoe). Foods. 2019 May 30;8(6):185. doi: 10.3390/foods8060185. PMID: 31151279; PMCID: PMC6616534.