Besides being a delicious seasoning and tasty drink (ginger ale) ginger has been traditionally used as a powerful medicine for many systems of the body. The root of the ginger is the part of the plant used. It contains over four hundred chemically active ingredients and has been used for thousand of years in Chinese and Ayurvedic systems of medicine.
Ginger is wonderful for the treatment of digestive complaints including nausea and vomiting. It is also used for atherosclerosis, migraine headaches, and morning sickness (talk with your doctor first about quantities to use).
One of the best uses for ginger is for motion sickness. Studies have shown that using ginger is equal to or better than drugs like Dramamine against nausea and dizziness of motion sickness without the side effect of drowsiness. For prevention of motion sickness, start taking ginger tablets, capsules, or liquid herbal extract a couple of days before and during your trip.
Ginger is recognized along with turmeric as some of the most potent anti-inflammatories used in herbal medicine. It works wonders as a treatment for both acute inflammatory joint diseases like a hot low back and for chronic problems like arthritis.
Ginger contains many antiviral compounds. Scientists have found several chemicals in ginger that work against rhinoviruses, the most common family of cold viruses. It is effective in relieving cold symptoms like pain and fever, helps in suppressing coughs and has a mild sedative effect that encourages rest.
How much ginger should you take? Most people take 2-4 grams of the dried powder two to three times per day. An easy way to take ginger is to slow boil an inch or two of chopped, fresh ginger root in 2-3 cups of water for 15-20 minutes. This tea is a great remedy for menstrual cramps and to help "sweat out" a cold.
Are you "coming down" with something? Try this yogic remedy:
Using a juicer, make 2 ounces of ginger juice and mix it with 2 ounces of lemon juice in enough water to make the drink palatable. Because it's hot, drink it fairly quickly (if you're worried about the lemon juice affecting the enamel of your teeth, sip it through a straw). Even though you might feel like a rocket about to launch, within a few minutes you'll feel the power of the ginger starting to attack the viruses and bacteria in your system. Take this drink as often as you feel you need to.