The Health Benefits of Ginger- Recipes and Remedies for Everyday Living - Natural Cold and Flu Remedies - Green Tip #23

Kismet

Howdy All!

Today’s topic is brought to you by Kismet. As you know by now, many times my intended topic is diverted by the “best laid plans of mice and men”. However, this week, upon learning many of my co-workers are suffering with unseasonable colds, I set out to bring you my home remedy to ease, if not erase, the symptoms. When reading the Sunday paper this morning, the Chamberlain’s food flyer happened to feature the very component of my home remedy. Awesome! Kismet has reinforced my best laid plans!

Initially, I had intended to address this topic when the cold and flu season officially hit, but obviously (as I well know!) Mother Nature has plans of her own and cannot be second-guessed. Also, what sense does it make for me to wait until we are all suffering from colds and flu? Why not arm yourself ahead of time for the impending plight!? So, here we go, folks. I hope you find the following tips useful…


Cold and flu season can put a real damper on your lifestyle.
Cold and flu season can put a real damper on your lifestyle. | Source

Natural alternatives to medicine

Many, many years ago a very dear friend of mine, who happens to be a vegetarian and refuses to take any kind of medication, including aspirin, turned me on to this trick. (Thank you, Guy!). I have since shared the recipe with many, over the years. It really does work to ease the symptoms of the common cold, aches and pains of the flu and the resultant general discomfort and congestion. First, I’ll give you the recipe, then I’ll go into the science and history of the main component, ginger root. Afterwards, I’ll share some other remedies, along with natural practices to help build your immune system, in hopes of reducing the frequency and/or severity of this common attack on good health.

First, understand that the over-the-counter cold and flu remedies available do nothing but mask the symptoms. They do not build your immune system, nor do they push the “bad means” , as I and my mother call them, out of your body. The following simple remedy helps your body fight the invasion, thus helping to rid your continental self of the enemy, through elimination and sweat. It also helps to alleviate nausea that so often accompanies flu symptoms. Are you ready? It’s very simple, very inexpensive and doesn’t introduce foreign substances or chemicals into your body!

The components of ginger root tea.
The components of ginger root tea. | Source

Ginger root tea

Slice fresh ginger root (available at the grocery store, produce stand or health food store for about $3.99/lb.). about ¼” thick, with outer skin on. 10 -15 slices ought to do for each batch. Place the slices in a small pot (2 qt. works fine) and fill the pot about ½ to ¾ full. Bring to a rolling boil, cover and take off the heat. Let the tea steep for about 15 – 20 minutes. Remove the lid and pour tea thru fine strainer to catch any of the skin that’s become dislodged. Put any ginger slices caught in the strainer back into the pot. Ginger tea is very potent. In order to make the flavor more palatable, and to fortify it with a bacteria fighting component, add a teaspoon of honey. I use raw, organic honey. Mix well until the honey is absorbed. Raw honey is thicker than what you buy in the bear bottle, so be sure to mix thoroughly in order to incorporate. Drink the tea as hot as you can stand it. Do this several times a day. You can re-use your ginger slices (simply add more water to the pot) until they take on a brownish color. At this point, they’ve lost their strength and need to be replenished. Simple, huh?!

Ginger root
Ginger root | Source

Properties of ginger root

Ginger is a rhizome, meaning it is “a somewhat elongated, usually horizontal subterranean plant stem that is often thickened by deposits of reserve food material, producing shoots above and roots below, and is distinguished from a true root in possessing buds, nodes and usually scale-like leaves”, according to Merriam Webster Dictionary. Ginger is one of the oldest, most widely used plants in the world. Native to Asia, ginger has been used as a culinary spice for over 4,000 years! The Chinese discovered it also has medicinal properties. It aids in digestion, nausea, upset stomach, diarrhea, motion sickness, morning sickness, constipation, colic and even nausea from chemotherapy. Preliminary studies have also shown that nine compounds found in ginger may bind to human serotonin receptors, possible helping to affect anxiety. Ginger compounds are active against a form of diarrhea, which is a leading cause of infant death in developing countries. Wow! Additionally, ginger works in the body as a natural anti-inflammatory and can be helpful with arthritis, headaches and menstrual cramps. Newer studies have shown ginger can be helpful in lowering cholesterol, preventing blood clotting and contains anti-cancer agents. Mother Nature knows what she’s doing, folks!

When we had upset stomachs as kids, Mom would always have us drink room temperature ginger ale and eat saltine crackers. I always thought it was just a Missouri thing, but it worked and now I know why! (As we grow older, we realize Mother really does know best!)

Adding 'heat' to your diet

Many weight loss articles I’ve read recommend adding “heat” to your diet in the form of cayenne pepper, paprika, cinnamon and – you guessed it! – ginger, in order to boost your body’s metabolism and fat burning properties. Calories are determined by how much “heat” is required to convert the food consumption to energy. Another benefit!

Back to the point

As you can see, ginger has many beneficial properties and deserves a place in everyday living. Consider it as necessary to your pantry as salt and pepper. Utilizing the foods, herbs, roots and plants Mother Nature has put on this earth will help to maintain a healthy body. My mother always says, “if you color-coordinate your meals, you’re getting all the nutrition, vitamins and minerals your body requires.” Of course, eating healthy and limiting, if not eliminating, processed foods, chemicals and preservatives from your diet, won’t keep you from getting sick. Especially if you have young children who are exposed to those who do not choose to employ a healthy lifestyle, or co-workers who refuse to stay home when ill. But eating as Mother Nature intended, will build your body’s immune system and hopefully reduce the frequency and severity of the ills that do attack.

Listen to your body

Keep in mind that many times our bodies shut down, by making us ill, when we refuse to give ourselves a break from stress, obligations and deadlines, as a way to force us to take care of our minds and souls. Leave work at work. Give work the 40 hours for which you are paid. Considering drive time, sleep and household chores, we don’t have 40 hours a week for ourselves or family, so give them a quality “you”. Eat healthy, live healthy and share yourself with family and friends. Don’t live for work. You work, unfortunately, to live because we no longer live off the land. We no longer barter goods or services. We are forced to make money to justify our existence. So, keep yourself healthy in order to combat the 8 -5 stresses, eat simply and organically, and make the vessel of your being as outstanding as it can be. Give forth of yourself! Someone needs and loves you!

Ok, I’ve done it again. I’ve gone off on a tangent. But that’s OK. The other cold and flu remedies I promised you earlier in this blither (what is a blog, anyway??), will give me something to talk about next week!

Until then, keep a smile in your heart and never, ever let the music fade!

Peace,

Bravewarrior



Shauna L Bowling

Refining, Defining or Rhyming

All Rights Reserved

© 2012 Shauna L Bowling

More by this Author


Comments 12 comments

billybuc profile image

billybuc 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

The music never dies, Sha, even after the Fat Lady sings.

Great suggestion; I'm a big believer in the body's immune system and not messing with it. Hence, I am rarely sick! My body can handle most of the germs and viruses that come along on a regular basis. Flue shots? Never had one and I won't....I trust my body.

This suggestion I will try; very helpful buddy.

sending hugs and love your way

bill


bravewarrior profile image

bravewarrior 4 years ago from Central Florida Author

Bill, you never cease to amaze me. With all you have on your plate, you never drop the dime! I wish could sit with you. I'm having a very hard time juggling my full time job with my budding freelance career and my love for my hubbers. People think I've disappeared cuz I just can't find the rythym! You are absolutely outstanding!

Back to the point. I've never had a flu shot, either. The ginger root tea really works. In fact, I found it has more benefit than what I've related. I have a friend who cannot stand the Florida humidity. I turned him onto ginger root tea. He drinks one cup in the morning and another at night before he goes to bed. His congestion has been eliminated, he coughs less and he even snores less!

Ginger is a powerful root and so much safer for the body, not to mention the cost savings in drugs and doctors!


TToombs08 profile image

TToombs08 4 years ago from Somewhere between Heaven and Hell without a road map.

Brave, great information! Looking forward to the next one as I'm allergic to ginger. It gives me an upset stomach and a killer migraine. Loved your style! Voted up more and tweeted. :)


bravewarrior profile image

bravewarrior 4 years ago from Central Florida Author

Really, you're allergic to ginger? Oh, man! Well, shoot! Maybe a shot of novacaine???? What about ginger causes an allergic reaction?


Faith Reaper profile image

Faith Reaper 4 years ago from southern USA

Amazing remedies here, bravewarrior, and Amen on your ranting, as that is excellent advice on how to live our lives. Very interesting hub. In His Love, Faith Reaper


bravewarrior profile image

bravewarrior 4 years ago from Central Florida Author

I'm glad you actually got something out of my rant, or blithering, as I lovingly call it, Faith! Thank you for taking the time to visit my corner and leave a coment!


Farmer Rachel profile image

Farmer Rachel 4 years ago from Minnesota

Great advice! Your writing is so positive and upbeat, I love it. Put a smile on my face :). You're so right about honey, too. Locally produced honey especially is good for helping out the immune system and even fighting seasonal allergies. Voted this one up etc and following!


bravewarrior profile image

bravewarrior 4 years ago from Central Florida Author

Thanx for the follow Rachel. The admiration is mutual, to be sure!


Iris Draak profile image

Iris Draak 23 months ago from Boise, Idaho

I drink tea or hot water all winter long. This sounds great for warmth, soothing and health. I'm in. I'll grab some fresh ginger next time I'm at the grocery store (I always keep raw, organic honey around). :)


bravewarrior profile image

bravewarrior 23 months ago from Central Florida Author

Iris, I keep ginger root in the freezer so I have it on hand when I need to make this wonderful remedy. The last thing I want to do when I'm feeling poorly is run to the store!


Nadine May profile image

Nadine May 16 months ago from Cape Town, Western Cape, South Africa

I love ginger tea. Drink it almost every day together with a few peppermint leaves!


bravewarrior profile image

bravewarrior 16 months ago from Central Florida Author

Nadine, that's wonderful! Unfortunately, I only drink it when I'm feeling ill. However, it would be a great preventative measure to take as well. I never thought of adding peppermint leaves. Are the blended flavors pleasant?

    Sign in or sign up and post using a HubPages Network account.

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    No HTML is allowed in comments, but URLs will be hyperlinked. Comments are not for promoting your articles or other sites.


    Click to Rate This Article
    working