Bengaluru: You may have heard your parents and grandmothers recommending a cup of ginger tea for so many of your health woes, be it an upset tummy, joint pain, nausea or cold and flu, and they may not be entirely wrong in showing such strong faith in the tuber and the umpteen benefits of ginger.

Ginger is a perennial herb native to China and India known as Zingiber officinale. Often referred to as a root, ginger is actually a stem which grows underground. Indians have particularly used ginger in their culinary preparations for about 4000 years, but that’s not all.

Ginger is also replete with multiple medicinal properties and health benefits. According to Ayurveda especially, the multiple uses of ginger, makes the tuber one of the most significant herbs in the ancient practice.

Here are some amazing ginger benefits you may not have known about.

Settles upset stomach and aids digestion: The pungent root is known for its ability to settle an upset stomach. Ginger can work wonders for digestive health. Ginger protects and heals the gut, hastens the movement of food through the gastrointestinal tract, and reduces wind, bloating and cramps. It also awakens the taste buds, and gets digestive juices flowing.

Fights Inflammation: Its volatile oils have anti-inflammatory properties similar to those of NSAIDs (non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs), which makes it an excellent remedy for flu, headaches and menstrual pains. It can also lower medication intake in osteoarthritis.

Traditional remedy for cold: As per Ayurveda, one of the best remedies for cold is ginger. a couple of effective remedies like combining ginger (1 part), cinnamon (1 part) and lemon grass (2 parts). Steep 1 tsp of the formula for about 10 mins in 1 cup of hot water, strain it and add honey if you like. This tea will help reduce symptoms of cold. Another remedy you can try is ginger cinnamon cardamom tea. Mix ginger (2 parts), cinnamon (3 parts), cardamom (just a pinch) and add honey for taste if you like.

Alleviates nausea: The active compounds in ginger can ease morning sickness and nausea caused by cancer chemotherapy and after surgery.

Helps recover appetite: Chewing some ginger with lemon and black salt may help recover lost appetite. If you've been suffering from the same, you may want to try this home remedy to recover your appetite.

Can reduce menstrual pain: Ladies take note! Intake of ginger powder may help significantly to reduce menstrual cramps, also called dysmenorrhea. Ginger is one of the traditional remedies used to alleviate menstrual pain. You can also take a hot cup of ginger tea to bring relief from the pain.
May lower cholesterol levels: Experts have also linked ginger to lower levels of Low-Density Lipoproteins or "bad" cholesterol, which are known to increase risk of heart disease. Add this in your daily diet and watch out for effective results.

Can help fight infections: Gingerol, the bioactive compound in fresh ginger, can help lower the risk of infections. Its active constituent gingerol has analgesic, sedative, antipyretic and antibacterial effects. Ginger extract has abilities to inhibit the growth of different types of bacteria, especially oral bacteria linked to inflammatory diseases in the gums, such as gingivitis and periodontitis.

Eases joint pain: The high anti-inflammatory properties of ginger can ease joint pain to a great extent. It can be used in food, as medicine, dry powder or fresh root slices.