1. Helps Treat Nausea
Historically used as a natural remedy for seasickness and morning sickness, ginger is perhaps best known for its ability to treat nausea and vomiting.
One review analyzed the results of 12 studies involving 1,278 pregnant women and found that ginger was effective in reducing the symptoms of nausea with minimal risk of side effects. In addition, another study from the University of Rochester Medical Center showed that ginger helped reduce the severity of nausea in patients receiving chemotherapy.
2. Fights Fungal Infections
Fungal infections cause a wide variety of conditions, from fungal infections to itching and athlete’s foot. Fortunately, ginger helps kill fungal diseases due to its powerful antifungal properties.
In a test tube study conducted in 2016 in Iran, it was discovered that ginger extract is effective against two types of yeast that commonly cause fungal infections in the mouth. Another test sample in Mycoses measured the antifungal effects of 29 plant species and found that ginger was the most effective in eliminating fungi.
3. Protects Against Stomach Ulcers
Stomach ulcers are painful sores that form in the lining of the stomach and cause symptoms such as indigestion, fatigue, heartburn, and abdominal discomfort.
Several studies have found that ginger could help prevent the formation of stomach ulcers. In fact, an animal study in 2011 showed that ginger powder protected against stomach ulcers induced by aspirin by decreasing the levels of inflammatory proteins and blocking the activity of enzymes related to the development of the ulcer.
4. Eases Menstrual Pains
Unfortunately, adverse side effects such as pain, menstrual cramps (dysmenorrhea) and headaches are commonly associated with menstruation in many women. While some resort to over-the-counter medications to relieve symptoms, natural remedies such as ginger can be so helpful in relieving menstrual pain.
A study published in the Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine showed that ginger reduces menstrual pain as effectively as medications such as ibuprofen and mefenamic acid. Another study in 2009 had similar findings, reporting that ginger reduces both the intensity and duration of pain.
5. May Inhibit Cancer Growth
One of the most impressive benefits of ginger is its anti-cancer properties, thanks to the presence of a powerful compound called 6-gingerol.
The test tube studies show that ginger and its components can be effective in blocking the growth and development of cancer cells in ovarian, pancreatic and prostate cancers. However, more research is needed to determine how the properties of ginger inhibit cancer and how it can be translated to humans.
6. Regulates Blood Sugar
High blood sugar can cause many negative symptoms, from frequent urination to headaches (including migraines) and increased thirst. If left unchecked, it can even cause more serious problems, such as nerve damage and wound healing problems.
Research shows that ginger helps promote normal blood sugar to prevent these serious side effects. In a 2015 study, ginger supplementation actually reduced fasting blood sugar by 12 percent and improved long-term blood sugar control by 10 percent.
7. Relieves Joint and Muscle Pain
Because of its ability to reduce inflammation, adding ginger to your diet may help treat muscle pain and joint pain related to arthritis.
One study showed that daily consumption of ginger resulted in moderate to large reductions in muscle pain caused by muscle injury induced by exercise. Another study found that ginger extract helped decrease knee pain and the need for pain medication in people with osteoarthritis.
8. Lowers Cholesterol Levels
From bile production to manufacturing hormones, cholesterol is essential for overall health. However, high cholesterol levels can build up in the blood, causing blockages and increasing your risk of heart disease.
One of the greatest benefits of ginger is its ability to naturally reduce cholesterol levels and triglycerides to reduce the risk of heart problems. A study conducted at the Babol University of Medical Sciences found that ginger was able to significantly lower bad LDL cholesterol and increase beneficial HDL cholesterol compared to a placebo. (17) An animal study also showed that ginger was almost as effective at lowering cholesterol (improving cholesterol markers) as atorvastatin, a drug commonly prescribed for high blood cholesterol.