Do you think of ginger as just a spice? Something used to enhance flavor? The ginger root is in fact regarded as the healthiest spice around, capable of enhancing your health in some pretty tremendous ways. And drinking ginger tea is one of the simplest (and most soothing!) ways to avail yourself of ginger’s amazing benefits.
- Alleviate nausea
- Reduce inflammation and pain
- Support digestion
- Aid weight loss
- Boost immunity
- Regulate blood sugar
- Lower cholesterol
- Protect your brain
1. Alleviate nausea
Do you remember getting ginger ale as a kid whenever you had an upset tummy? Or maybe someone even gave you ginger tea to soothe your nausea or motion sickness. People have turned to ginger for its stomach-calming benefits since ancient Greek and Roman times. (1)
Modern science is in agreement. Research has proven that ginger can alleviate post-surgery or chemotherapy-related nausea (2), and it also eases the morning sickness experienced by many pregnant women. (3)
2. Reduce inflammation and pain
Ginger is often included in lists of the top anti-inflammatory foods, and for good reason. It contains the compound “gingerol” which is very effective at blocking inflammation in your body. (4)
For this reason, ginger can be used to treat inflammatory conditions ranging from skin disorders to muscle pain, menstrual cramps, arthritis and even Alzheimer’s. (5) Especially for anyone suffering from chronic pain, ginger tea can successfully ease symptoms. (6)
Even if you’re healthy, do you experience muscle soreness or cramps after exercising? Ginger tea can help with that too, according to one study. (7) And another study showed that ginger root extract can alleviate the pain of menstrual cramps. (8)
3. Support digestion
If you ever suffer from any digestive distress, such as indigestion, heartburn or bloating, ginger tea can help.
Ginger actually stimulates the muscles of your intestines. This is also known as digestive motility, and it helps your body break down food particles and move food and other substances out of your digestive tract. The result? Quicker, more comfortable digestion and less bloating and gas.
4. Aid weight loss
If you’re looking to get a little leaner, drinking ginger tea might help boost your fat-burning ability.
In a variety of studies, ginger proved its ability to suppress appetite, block fat absorption and enhance breakdown of fat. (9) In fact, a 2017 review of dozens of studies on ginger’s effect on weight loss concluded that ginger might have a positive effect on obesity management. (10)
5. Boost immunity
A stronger immune system just might be waiting for you at the bottom of a cup of ginger tea. Ginger has demonstrated antiviral, antibacterial and antifungal properties. This makes it an excellent homeopathic remedy for not only any kind of infection but also for allergies or cold symptoms.
How exactly does ginger do all that? The ginger root contains compounds called gingerols, shogaol and paradols. These cool little compounds are capable of fighting inflammation and free radicals, which can reduce your risk of chronic pain or disease. (14)
6. Regulate blood sugar
Normalizing your blood sugar is important for much more than just trying to avoid adult-onset diabetes. Keeping your blood sugar in check will give you more energy, reduce cravings, aid in weight loss, and help you sleep better. And ginger tea can be a secret weapon in keeping your blood sugar stable. (15)
Adding a daily dose of ginger to your diet has been proven to have long-term benefits in controlling blood sugar. (16) Even for people who are diabetic, consuming ginger regularly can improve their blood sugar and insulin resistance. (17)
7. Lower cholesterol
One of the best ways to keep your heart healthy is to keep your cholesterol in check. Ginger tea can help you maintain good cholesterol and might even help lower your LDL cholesterol levels. (18)
When research subjects were given daily doses of ginger, they experienced a significant decrease in total cholesterol, LDL cholesterol and triglycerides as compared to those who were given a placebo. (19)
8. Protect your brain
Even your brain can reap benefits from ginger’s powerful anti-inflammatory properties. Consuming ginger reduces inflammation throughout your body, which means it also protects your brain. (20)
Neurodegenerative disorders such as Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s are caused by inflammation of brain tissue. Taking ginger will not only decrease your chances of suffering from inflammation, but it might even improve your brain health. One study using ginger extract demonstrated improvement in cognitive function and enhanced working memory. (21)
Pregnant women should be careful when taking ginger to help with nausea because it’s possible that high doses of ginger could increase the risk of miscarriage. Also, consuming more than 4 grams of ginger per day (that’s a lot of cups of tea!!) can act as a blood thinner, so anyone with a bleeding disorder should be careful. For the same reason, doctors recommend avoiding ginger within two weeks prior to undergoing surgery or giving birth.
The health benefits of ginger are plentiful and have been well-documented for centuries. If you’re looking to add it to your wellness regimen, there’s no easier way than brewing a cup of ginger tea. If the flavor of ginger doesn’t appeal to you (you’re not alone!) you can add some honey, lemon, or even peppermint to your tea. Enjoy!