The Scoop

Some Foods Don’t Need The “Superfood” Title To Be Great: Ginger Is One Of Them

by Emily Beers August 20, 2018

Some Foods Don’t Need The “Superfood” Title To Be Great: Ginger Is One Of Them

Emily Beers, Manager of Social Mayhem
Lover of free speech, cookies and cynicism
Each month it seems a new “superfood’ is born, while another one dies a painful death. Remember the kale craze circa 2015-2016?
The kale enthusiasts never fooled me—although kale chips cooked in oil and slathered in salt came close to being edible—kale was widely praised in all its hairy-textured glory for being a powerhouse of nutrients capable of magical health gains.
But where is kale today? It’s growing in weed-like fashion in unwanted vegetable gardens far and wide. I have a friend who went out of his way to avoid growing kale, but somehow eager kale still managed to rear its hairy leaves next to the plump and delicious daikon radishes.
Indeed, the kale marketing machine has slowed, only to be replaced by an unexpected and un-assuming spice: Turmeric. Haven’t your heard? Turmeric has magic powers that all but cure cancer, they say. (My prediction is turmeric’s powers are as short-lived as kales’. All it’ll take to banish the spice from the superfood list are a couple more women like myself to have a turmeric-gone-bad experience: Freshly manicured white nails, I went home and decided to create a turmeric marinade for my chicken skewers only to end up with nails that looked like they had been peed on. So not worth it). I digress.
Some foods need marketing help to get people to eat them. Others do not: Enter ginger.
Ginger has always added a ton of flavour to savoury and sweet dishes alike, and on top of this, ginger is infused with tons of potential health benefits. And guess what is found in every traditional Chomp a’Lomp ginger cookie? You got it, a healthy dose of ginger! Let’s take a look at some of the things ginger has to offer.
1. Gingersol
Gingersol is a flowering plant originally from China and has a long history in traditional medicine, often being used to help digestion and fight the common cold and flu. It is also known to have both and antioxidant anti-inflammatory effects.
Beat Nausea!
Ginger has commonly been used to combat nausea, including morning sickness1 and sea sickness, and has even been used by cancer patients who get nauseous from chemotherapy.
3. Anti-Diabetic Powers
A 2015 study showed that taking 2-grams a ginger a day helps lower fasting blood sugar in those with Type 2 diabetes by 12-percent2. It also showed to help reduce A1C levels (the test that measures average blood glucose levels) by 10-percent.
4. Post-Workout Recovery
Ginger has also been shown to reduce DOMS (delayed onset muscle soreness), which you might feel after a hard workout. It is believed this is because of ginger’s anti-inflammatory qualities.
5. Osteoarthritis
Ginger’s anti-inflammatory qualities are also good for those with osteoarthritis, a degenerative joint disease that leads to joint pain and immobility. This study of 247 people with the disease found significantly less joint pain when they took ginger than their regular pain medication3.
6. Digestion
If you suffer from digestion discomfort, ginger might be the answer. It seems to speed up digestion with people who suffer from chronic indigestion. 1 gram of ginger had been proven to speed up digestion by 50-percent.
7. Cramps!
The next time you’re on your period, try a Chomp a’Lomp ginger cookie. Ginger is better than Advil or Aleve or Ibuprophen, or whatever you take to ease your pain, for menstrual cramps, especially in the first three days of the menstrual cycle when cramps tend to be at their worst. If nothing else, the delicious cookie is sure to take your mind off the discomfort that goes along with that time of month. Embrace the timeless ginger root!
Sources
1. Estelle Viljoen, Janicke Visser, Nelene Koen, and Alfred Musekiwa. A systematic review and meta-analysis of the effect and safety of ginger in the treatment of pregnancy-associated nausea and vomiting. The National Center for Biotechnology Information. The Board of Scientific Counselors. 2014 Mar 19. 2018 Aug 16. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3995184.
2. Nafiseh Khandouzi, Farzad Shidfar, Asadollah Rajab, Tayebeh Rahideh, Payam Hosseini, and Mohsen Mir Taheri. The Effects of Ginger on Fasting Blood Sugar, Hemoglobin A1c, Apolipoprotein B, Apolipoprotein A-I and Malondialdehyde in Type 2 Diabetic Patients. The National Center for Biotechnology Information. The Board of Scientific Counselors. 2015 Winter. 2018 Aug 16. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4277626.
3. Altman RD, Marcussen KC. Effects of a ginger extract on knee pain in patients with osteoarthritis. The National Center for Biotechnology Information. The Board of Scientific Counselors. 2001 Nov. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/11710709.



Emily Beers
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