Spread the love

Introduction:

  • Ginger as a spice has been used in many forms since ancient times.
  • It has various application in cooking and therapeutic.
  • It has extremely high anti-inflammatory properties.
  • It is a flowering plant, but its root or rhizome is used as a spice. It can be used in any forms such as fresh, dried, powdered, oil and juice.
  • It is loaded with nutrients and bioactive compounds that help in function of body and brain.
  • It is used as a common ingredient in many cuisines to impart unique characteristic flavour in dishes like curries, soups, dressings etc.
  • It is also used in alcoholic beverages, sweets, and bakery items.
  • Because of antioxidants present it is commonly used in homes for cure of nausea, stomach pain arthritis, diabetes etc.
  • It is also approved by FDA as safe foods and is used in pharmaceutical for masking the bitterness of medicines specially cough syrups and tablets.
  • It can be worth if we term Ginger as a super food having versatile applications and benefits.

History:

  • The botanical name is Zingiber officinale.
  • It was used as a luxury spice about 5000 years back.
  • It was originated in Southeast Asia and then cultivated in other countries.
  • The root of this spice was used as a tonic to cure common diseases by Indians and Chinese.
  • It became a popular spice in Rome and was used in making sweets in the medieval time.
  • From ancient times this spice has been treated as a warm spice and as a medicine used for digestion, flatulence, and colic.

How to select a good fresh ginger:

Few things to keep in mind are –

  • Skin should be shiny and taut.
  • Skin should be thin instead of thick and fibrous.
  • The smell should be pungent and spicy.
  • It should not have any soft spots.

Nutrition:

  • Bunch of vitamins and minerals such as Vitamin B3, B6, C, Folate, Riboflavin, Niacin. Minerals like Iron, Potassium, Magnesium, Zinc, Phosphorous. But all are present in trace amounts.

Comparison of different types of Ginger:

Amongst the 5 types of ginger available the two commonly used are:

1.Common Ginger – Each 100 gm contains Energy 80 calories, Carbohydrates 18 gm, Protein 1.8 gm, Fat 0.8 gm.

2.Galanjal – Each 100 gm contains Energy 71 calories, Carbohydrates 15 gm, Protein 1 gm, Fat 0 gm.

Health Benefits:

  • Due to presence of gingerol it is used as a powerful antioxidant and anti-inflammatory ingredient.
  • It helps to reduce weight and waist-hip ratio.
  • It helps in osteoarthritis of knee.
  • Lowers blood sugar levels and helps in heart disease and Type 2 diabetes.
  • It helps to prevent nausea and morning sickness.
  • It helps in speedy empty of stomach which helps in indigestion and all discomfort related to stomach.
  • It helps in pain relief during menstrual cycles, if taken from the beginning.
  • Helps to reduce bad cholesterol levels LDL and tri glyceride levels of blood.
  • Because of presence of gingerol also acts as a protection against cancer.
  • Keeps mouth healthy by its antibacterial property.

Side effects of Overeating Ginger:

  • Consuming more than 5gm a day may cause skin rash.
  • Can cause acid reflux.
  • Can start Irritation in the mouth.
  • Can start diarrhoea.
  • Pregnant women or having Gallstones or blood clotting should not take excess ginger.

Applications:

  • As a flavour enhancer in cuisines such as curries, soups etc.
  • As a flavouring in beverages like tea, coffee, lemonade, cocktails, smoothies, yogurt.
  • In bakery and confectionary like cookies, candy, bread.
  • Ginger paste is also used in homemade recipes.
  • Infused Tea and water as a natural homemade therapy.
  • Juice is used in beverages and homemade therapies.
  • Also used in cosmetics and personal care products such as soaps, shampoos, oils, and perfumes.
  • Supplements are present in form of capsules, extracts, syrup, powder, oils, and dried root etc.

Preparation and Storage tips:

  • To maintain the flavour and longevity, keep it refrigerated in a self-sealing bag by removing all the air from inside.
  • Always buy ginger that is not wet, mouldy, or withered, keep the peel and remove if any moisture present.
  • The best way to keep it for long is by freezing it in the form of grated or paste.

Interesting facts about Ginger:

  • Gingerbread was first introduced in Europe. It was made by making the sweet dough by adding spices like ginger and others were cinnamon, clove, nutmeg.
  • It was in ancient times used in cocktails by having alcohol also at times. It was known by the name Ginger Ale and it was actually a ginger drink.
  • It is also used in electronic cigarettes to provide aroma in the liquid inside.
  • It is one of the most pungent and hot spice that increases with time. After cooked it is slight low.
  • Ginger is an important ingredient of cuisines in Korea, Japan and Chinese. The famous dish of Korea known as Kimchi is made with fermenting vegetables and ginger. The well-known Saengang Cha is also a class of Ginger Tea.
  • It has antiemetic quality which helps in motion and morning sickness.
  • Ginger has oils like gingerol, zingerone and shogaoli which gives the pungent taste, and it is also used in perfumes.
  • It is used in Japanese pickle where it is marinated with vinegar and sugar. It is usually served with sushi and sashimi.
  • It is also used in the curry cuisine of Goa named as Vindaloo.
  • It is also used in wine making. During the cholera epidemic it proved helpful by fermenting marinating ginger and raisins.
  • Ginger is also used in making yang tonic which helps in boosting energy and vitality.

Most Commonly Used Beverage:

A Healthy Sip – Adrak Wali Chai

Adrak wali chai is a term everyone hears from his childhood days. Whether it may be used as a remedy for upset stomach, sore throat, too cold temperature etc. Tea as such in India is not only just a beverage but it is a daily addiction in our lives. The type of tea consumed only varies.

Tea itself is known for its medicinal benefits. Ginger tea beverage is a native of South-East Asia and is hugely popular in China and India. While Indians like to add a small quantity of crushed ginger to their milky variant of black tea. The Chinese prefer to make a milk-free version that can be consumed hot, cold or at room temperature. A version like the one in India is also consumed in Brunei, Singapore, and Malaysia.

If you want to opt for milk free version of ginger tea, then add lemon. In Ginger tea honey can be added instead of sugar to make it healthier. As per current pandemic situation here are few benefits of Ginger in our diet along with tea that will urge you to try it.

  • Boost your immunity by consuming a cup of ginger tea a day, because of the antioxidants present in the tea.
  • Stomach relief – It helps digestion to function smoothly, and in turn preventing from any irritation, and hence provides relief.
  • Stress Relief – It is like any other normal tea, provides relief in stress.
  • Relief for inflammation of the joints – It helps in providing relief in case of wear tear and soreness in joints and muscles.
  • Relief for nausea– Feelings of nausea and discomfort, particularly because of motion sickness, can also be calmed by consuming ginger tea.
  • Respiratory relief – Ginger tea is advised to a person with a cold. The brew aids to reduce chest congestion, hence allowing to breathe easy.
  • Improve blood circulation– It has vitamins, minerals and amino acids that aids to improve blood circulation. It also helps during regular and vigorous workouts. It also helps in keeping good cardiovascular health and prevent strokes.
  • Relief from menstrual cramps-Drinking ginger tea with honey for menstruating helps ease the pain from menstrual cramps by relaxing the muscles.
  • Lose fat- It is a surprise benefit for the persons consuming milk-free ginger tea with lemon as it can help in fat burning allowing you to feel lighter and more active.

One Comment

Leave a Reply