Written by Elizabeth McLean @ Health Wiz
Ginger also known as Zingiber officinale was originally derived from Asia, but is now used throughout the world as a spice, medicine and even as a delicacy in some cultures. The part of the plant most commonly used is the rhizome, which is the horizontal stem of the plant that is found underground, and sends out smaller roots and shoots.
Ginger is often used in cooking and lends itself to both sweet and savory dishes. With regard to medicinal use, there is now compelling evidence that ginger is effective at treating nausea related to motion sickness, morning sickness and chemotherapy. The odor and flavor of ginger is caused by several volatile oils including zingerone, shogaol and gingerol. These oils make up a very small percent of the fresh ginger rhizome, but are very potent and have been found to be effective in relieving pain, treating fever and killing bacteria.
Ginger has commonly been used in traditional medicine for managing colds and flus, and makes a wonderful tea with honey and lemon to soothe symptoms of upper respiratory tract infection including runny nose, sore throat and cough. Just this week I have been dosing myself up on the tea to soothe a sore throat, and it really has been effective. Simply add the juice of half a lemon, peel and slice a 2 cm piece of ginger, and add a teaspoon of honey. Try this several times a day when you have a cold to help soothe inflammation, fight bacteria and boost your immune system. It really does work!