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Gingerly Delicious Way to Beat the Flu

Updated on November 3, 2014

The Golden Root

Ginger Tea
Ginger Tea | Source
Source

Get to the Root!

I have always used a fair amount of ginger in my cooking. Long before I knew how beneficial it was to health and the immune system. I also have to tell you that my children and I very rarely suffer from colds and flu. Maybe consuming ginger isn't the only reason for this, but if we are what we eat, it must play a productive role in our case.

My love of travel introduced me to foods in various continents and I savor the insight it gives me into the people and the cultures I explore. Dietary condiments, herbs, and spices that are used to flavor foods impart the distinctive aromas to foods around the world, making them unique to the region, are an exciting discovery by themselves. With the world coming closer together through global interactions, these exotic condiments have become accessible and available throughout the world, encouraging chefs and the cooks at home to create new dishes or put a spin on traditional ones to add depth and interest to everyday cooking.

Ginger is well-known to the western world, yet not as fully exploited in culinary use as it has potential for. Highly aromatic and full of zing, the ginger root offers not just richness of flavor, but also enormous health benefits. From its ancient origins in the Indian subcontinent to its global presence, this wonder root - Zingiber Officinale - is a close relative of turmeric and cardamom. Sanskrit texts dating as far back as 3 and 4 century AD reveal its medicinal uses for ailments and health conditions. The consumed part of the plant are not actually roots but rhizomes, or stems, although the words are used interchangeably.

Fun Facts

Traders from the Arab world brought ginger to the Mediterranean region and exported it to Greece and Rome more than 2000 years ago.

Around the thirteenth century, a pound of ginger was the same price as a lamb in the Arab trading world.

In the Medieval ages, ginger became the preserved product used in sweets in Europe.

The gingerbread man was born, thanks to Queen Elizabeth I of England. It is said that she presented royal visitors to the palace a likeness of their own image in beautifully wrapped gingerbread men.

Owing to its pungent, strong and heat-producing effects, ginger was thought to be a potent aphrodisiac through several ages.

The Greeks used to roll a piece of ginger in bread to eat after a large meal as a digestive aid.

Why It is so Good for You

  • Very useful as an immune system booster, especially against colds and flu. Tea infused with ginger also helps relieve cold and flu symptoms.
  • Gastrointestinal benefits: Ginger helps rid the body of intestinal gas through its carminative effect. The spasmolytic property helps soothe the intestinal tract.
  • Rich antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties known as gingerols.
  • Helps combat motion sickness.
  • Provides significant and completely safe relief of nausea associated with pregnancy.
  • Medical studies have suggested its benefit in patients suffering from arthritis in the reduction of pain.
  • It is also considered to help in the prevention of cancer, particularly of the colon.

Ginger-infused Bourbon Cocktail
Ginger-infused Bourbon Cocktail
Stir-fried Ginger Tofu
Stir-fried Ginger Tofu

How to Use Ginger in Food and Drink

While most of us in the western world associate ginger with sweet dainties, such as gingerbread cookies or pies and gingerbread houses, there are many ways to incorporate this delightfully healthy spice into everyday meals. Its sharp, spicy tang infuses a delightful, fresh scent into many things you prepare.

The Last Word

Food is good and nourishes our body. Some things more than others. Ginger is one of those things. So simple to use and a powerful weapon against the ills of this time of year. So go ahead and indulge! It will fortify you.

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    • Jackie Lynnley profile image

      Jackie Lynnley 2 years ago from The Beautiful South

      Great info. I have included ginger in some of my health hubs and I really swear by it too. I do not like ginger flavor like in cookies etc but I grate it in almost every salad I make and have added it to smoothies a couple of years now and I haven't had flu in many years.

      I now take an Amish Remedy I wrote about and it has ginger as one of its main ingredients along with garlic and vinegar and I am consuming that almost every day so hopefully it will be even more of a benefit for me.

      Up and sharing! Will be back to read more.

    • wordswithlove profile image
      Author

      Neetu M 2 years ago from Pennsylvania, USA

      Thank you for coming by to read and comment on my hub, Jackie. Glad you share the flu-free experience.:) I shall check out your Amish remedy hub, too. And thanks for sharing!

    • Shyron E Shenko profile image

      Shyron E Shenko 2 years ago from Texas

      Great hub, wish I had read this a week and a half ago or long. When I went to the Emergency Room with a migraine and could have used some ginger tea to help me keep food down. While in the ER a nurse told me to try some ginger snaps. I told my doctor that I bought ginger snaps and he said ginger is fine it is the snap that gets you. Buy ginger capsules

      he said.

    • wordswithlove profile image
      Author

      Neetu M 2 years ago from Pennsylvania, USA

      Glad you liked my hub, Shyron. If it makes you feel any better, I hadn't published it a week and a half ago! I just posted it a couple days ago. At least you will have this info to help you next time you have migraine. :) Thank you for reading it!

    • profile image

      zahidul245 2 years ago

      you are right....

    • wordswithlove profile image
      Author

      Neetu M 2 years ago from Pennsylvania, USA

      Glad you agree, zahidul. :)

    • poetryman6969 profile image

      poetryman6969 2 years ago

      In some cultures ginger is used as a cure all.

    • wordswithlove profile image
      Author

      Neetu M 2 years ago from Pennsylvania, USA

      Thanks for coming by, poetryman. Yes, it is used a good deal for its healing properties.

    • peachpurple profile image

      peachy 2 years ago from Home Sweet Home

      I did used ginget water and honey, it was warm and soothing

    • wordswithlove profile image
      Author

      Neetu M 2 years ago from Pennsylvania, USA

      Hello peachpurple, thanks for coming by to read this. I am pleased to meet you. Glad you thought ginger water and honey was warm and soothing. I guess, partly because it has an intense flavor, it sinks into you!

    • Thelma Alberts profile image

      Thelma Alberts 2 years ago from Germany

      I love drinking ginger tea and mostly cook Asian food with ginger. Thanks for sharing this very informative hub. Enjoy your weekend!

    • wordswithlove profile image
      Author

      Neetu M 2 years ago from Pennsylvania, USA

      That's great, Thelma! Thank you for visiting and reading my hub. :) I cook a good deal with ginger, too.

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