I hate cooking.
I have negative-zero culinary skills.
What can I say?
Cooking is not one of my strengths.
But here’s the problem.
I like to eat.
And I like to eat healthy. (Most of the time).
So, the other day, even though I would much rather have hopped in my car to go to Trader Joe’s to pick up some healthy muffins (if there’s such a thing), I decided to make my own.
I decided to go with ginger muffins. Because, well, ginger is supposed to be good for you, right?
Yes, I know it would have been much healthier for me to make some ginger tea or ginger beet juice or some other healthy recipe with ginger in it, but I was in the mood for a muffin!
So, I gathered all the ingredients and got to work. It was torture. Like I said, I hate cooking.
When it was over, the ginger muffins came out pretty good.
Ginger gave the muffins a unique blend of spicy and sweet. Pretty amazing, considering my lack of skills.
So, that got me to thinking about ginger. Not just about how yummy it is, but about ginger’s health benefits. I did some research and discovered that ginger is even healthier than I thought, so I figured I’d share a bit of what I learned.
Here’s what ginger can do for you:
Ginger Helps Control Blood Sugar Levels
It’s no secret that balanced blood sugar levels are crucial to maintaining a healthy weight and high energy levels. Sudden spikes and crashes in your blood glucose can make you feel lethargic and moody.
But guess what? Ginger can help.
Studies have shown that ginger can help keep your blood sugar levels in check. So, before you reach for that energy bar, try adding some ginger to your meal. It’s an excellent natural solution to keep your energy levels humming smoothly throughout the day.
Ginger Relieves Gas
Ginger tea has shown effectiveness in relieving gas and promoting a healthy digestive system. Make yourself a soothing cup of ginger tea before bed, and let it work its magic overnight. (But it might be a good idea to warn people first).
Ginger Helps with Weight Loss
Many people struggle to maintain a healthy weight. And it’s well-known that being overweight can lead to various health issues like heart disease, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, diabetes, and even cancer.
But incorporating ginger into your diet can accelerate your weight loss efforts by speeding up metabolism and promoting a sense of fullness, which can result in a reduced calorie intake.
There is some scientific evidence that ginger may promote weight loss. For example, one study found that ginger extract helped to reduce body weight and fat mass in overweight and obese adults. Another study found that ginger powder helped to increase energy expenditure and reduce appetite in healthy adults.
However, more research is needed to confirm these findings. It’s also important to note that ginger is not a magic bullet. You still have to eat a healthy diet and exercise regularly to lose weight and keep it off.
I know. (I was kind of hoping for a magic bullet).
Ginger Boosts Nutrient Absorption
Did you know that our bodies absorb only a fraction of the nutrients we consume? But ginger aids in increasing nutrient absorption by stimulating digestive enzymes and improving gut motility. This enhanced digestion ensures that your body efficiently absorbs essential nutrients from the food you consume, maximizing the benefits of each meal.
Ginger Improves Circulation
Ginger acts as a catalyst for healthy blood flow. Its dynamic compounds, such as gingerols and zingerone, encourage your blood vessels to widen.
This expansion allows your blood to flow more freely and efficiently throughout your body, ensuring that every cell receives its fair share of nutrients and oxygen.
When your circulation is optimal, all your organs function better, from your heart pumping strongly, to your brain firing on all cylinders, to your muscles recovering quickly after a workout. Your skin might even glow a bit more thanks to the enhanced delivery of nourishment and the efficient removal of waste.
The improved circulation also translates into a warm, comforting sensation radiating through your body. Think about the cozy feeling you get after sipping a cup of hot ginger tea on a chilly day. That’s not just psychological comfort. It’s a physiological response to ginger’s circulatory boost.
Ginger Relieves Pain
Ginger is a natural pain reliever that can be effective for a variety of pain conditions, including headaches, muscle aches, and arthritis pain. It works by blocking the production of pain-causing chemicals in the body. And it works on a hormonal level. So, if you’re looking for a natural way to relieve pain, ginger is a good option.
Ginger Reduces Bad Breath
Ginger, consumed after meals, can help cleanse your palate and freshen your breath. That’s because of its natural antimicrobial properties, which can help fight off the bacteria responsible for bad breath, scientifically known as halitosis.
When you eat, tiny particles of food get stuck between oyur teeth and gums. These particles can be a feeding ground for bacteria. As these bacteria break down the food particles, they produce sulfur compounds that have an unpleasant smell.
That’s where ginger can help.
The active compounds in ginger, like gingerol and shogaol, have antimicrobial qualities. That means they can inhibit the growth of bacteria in the mouth and prevent those unwanted guests from throwing a feast and creating a stinkfest.
In addition, ginger stimulates saliva production, which further helps to rinse away food particles and bacteria, cleansing your palate effectively.
Consuming a small piece of ginger after a meal not only provides a burst of fresh, pungent flavor that can cleanse the palate but also helps to maintain oral hygiene, leading to fresher breath. It’s like a natural, flavorful, post-meal mouthwash you can carry anywhere.
Ginger Boosts the Immune System
Incorporating ginger into your diet can help strengthen your body’s defense system, cleanse your lymphatic system, flush out toxins, and kill bacteria.
Ginger Clears Sinuses Naturally
Next time you experience a sinus blockage, try a cup of hot ginger tea. Gingerol, the active compound in ginger that contributes to many of its health benefits may help to clear sinuses and facilitate drainage.
Gingerol is a natural oil and is responsible for ginger’s unique spicy aroma and taste. It has anti-inflammatory and antioxidant effects, which can help soothe irritated respiratory tracts.
Ginger Helps Fight Cancer
Recent studies have shown that ginger may help fight several types of cancers, thanks to the compound 6-gingerol. It may help prevent new cancer cells from forming and destroy active ones.
Ginger Supports Cardiovascular Health
Ginger’s anti-inflammatory and antioxidant effects may help prevent heart diseases. Regular ginger consumption has been linked with lower cholesterol levels, reduced blood clotting, and helping to maintain healthy blood sugar levels, all of which can help to protect against heart disease.
Ginger Promotes Healthy Aging
Ginger is a potent source of antioxidants, substances that neutralize harmful free radicals in our bodies. Free radicals are unstable molecules that, in high amounts, can cause oxidative stress and contribute to cellular aging and various chronic diseases.
The antioxidants found in ginger, such as gingerol, zingerone, and shogaol, can combat this oxidative stress, helping to protect our cells and potentially delay the aging process at the cellular level.
Let’s Wrap This Up
The health benefits of ginger are clear. That’s why it’s a must-have in your health and wellness toolkit.
And the beauty of it?
Ginger is super easy to fit into your diet. You can add it to your tea, your meals, or your smoothies.
But the journey to a healthier lifestyle doesn’t stop here. Because ginger isn’t the only way to stay healthy.
I’ve got something even better for you. An entire eBook filled with tips on how to live a healthy lifestyle called: How to Live Healthy Lifestyle (Without Going Nuts, Bananas, or Gluten-Free).
And be sure to sign up for my newsletter, “Longevity Quest” where the goal is to help you, “Live to 100 (or die trying).”