McCormick Science Institute

MSI Funded Paper: Potential Health Benefits of Ginger

Singletary, K

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MSI Team

August 2011-- An overview of the potential health benefits of ginger, funded by the McCormick Science Institute.  An evaluation of the research is presented. Read the entire study (PDF)

Ginger (Zingiber officinale Roscoe) is a member of the Zingiberaceae family of plants. It has been a part of healing strategies in Asia, India, Europe, and the Middle East for centuries for treatment of such disorders as arthritis, stomach upset, asthma, diabetes, and menstrual irregularities, to name a few. There is scientific support that ginger may alleviate the symptoms of nausea and vomiting following pregnancy, surgery, cancer therapy, or motion sickness and suggestive evidence that ginger reduces inflammation and pain.

Cell culture studies show that ginger has antioxidant properties. However, it is not known whether ginger antioxidant constituents are bioavailable in humans once ingested and whether they can affect markers of oxidative stress in human in vivo. There are preliminary data that ginger has antimicrobial potential, although there is little evidence supporting ginger’s practical usefulness in combating infections in humans. Based on evidence primarily from animal and in vitro studies, ginger may have beneficial effects toward cardiovascular disease through its multiple actions counteracting inflammation, hyperlipidemia, platelet aggregation, and hypertension.

Overall, based on the current body of scientific literature, more information is needed from clinical studies to confirm these promising multiple health benefits of ginger in human subjects and the doses that are most efficacious.

A brief summary of potential health benefits, and suggestions for future research are presented in this study.

 

Reference

Singletary, K. Ginger: Overview of Health Benefits. Nutrition Today. 2011 July/August: 45(4): 171-183. Read the entire study (PDF)

 

 
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