For decades your grandma has been giving you ginger-ale for upset tummies and you thought it was just for the bubbles. Ginger, a root vegetable and popular spice, has been used in various traditions for nausea and other ailments all over the world for thousands of years. Ayurvedic and Chinese medicine have both recognized the amazing properties of ginger and now it seems that even NASA uses ginger for astronauts to combat space nausea.
Gas and Nausea
Ginger is a carminative, which means it helps to expel gas from the stomach or intestines, one of the main reasons for stomach upset. Gas can be extremely painful, in fact many cases of those who bring themselves to the emergency for severe stomach cramping find out that they only had intense gas pains. Ginger also soothes tissues and relaxes cramping and is beneficial as an anti-inflammatory and general digestive aid as it helps to promote the body’s formation of enzymes and good bacteria in the gut.
You know if NASA has decided to use ginger for space nausea it must be effective. Can you imagine the sensation of zero gravity for an extended period of time? Take car sickness and multiply it to the max!
Woman’s best friend
Ginger has a lot of favorite uses, one being pregnancy nausea. Few things will relieve morning sickness like ginger. Cut up fresh and steeped like tea with a bit of honey, as a candied chew or in a syrup form, ginger is your stomach’s best friend. Women in all stages can be assisted by ginger’s soothing benefits. Those who experience regular menstrual pains can find ginger helpful in reducing intense sensations and bloating as well as supporting a cramp-free cycle.
Sinus congestion and pain
For the sinuses and any congestion in the body, ginger helps to stimulate the movement of stagnant mucous assisting in ridding oneself of bacteria. For sore muscles, drop some ginger essential oil or ginger tea into a hot bath and soak. With so many uses, this common household spice could hold its own in the medicine cabinet against any modern medicine.
The anti-inflammatory effects of ginger can be of great relief to one suffering from arthritis and rheumatism. Ginger has been found to reduce swelling and assist in pain relief better than aspirin without the negative side-effects. Approximately 1500 mg is all that is needed for most to feel a great difference in previously painful situations.
Ginger has been found to be helpful in so many more serious conditions as well, such as ovarian and colorectal cancer. Studies have been conducted with amazing results and now the University of Minnesota, where the studies were conducted, has applied for a patent on the use of the key constituent in ginger, gingerol. Gingerol was the main component isolated and used in the successful studies as an anti-cancer agent. They have already licensed the technology to Pediatric Pharmaceuticals.
For the immune system, nothing is better to help move toxins from the system and strengthen key immune glands. Ginger helps to encourage a good sweat – when taken internally and soaked in externally, generating ‘artificial fever’ symptoms – which helps the body push toxins from the system through the skin. In this way, the body does not have to process the bacteria through the system and can quickly relieve the body from what may have become a full-blown illness.
All around the world ginger is recognized for its amazing health benefits and now even NASA is relying on this ancient plant to calm space nausea in astronauts. What will be next? As more and more plants are discovered to be effective in their natural state, perhaps we will see a return to earth-medicine and a reduction in health-care costs. One can only hope…and try these remedies out for themselves.
Written by: Stasia Bliss