A study published in the International Journal of Food Sciences and Nutrition has made some promising discoveries about this widespread spice: It may be one of the keys to preventing and treating diabetes. The study put 70 type 2 diabetic patients through a double-blind test where they were given either a 1600 mg ginger supplement or a 1600 mg placebo for a period of 12 weeks.
The study found that the ginger supplement reduced 8 of the markers associated with diabetes. These markers that were reduced included:
- Levels of insulin
- Insulin resistance levels
- Total cholesterol
- Inflammatory C-reactive protein
- Inflammatory Prostaglandin E2
- Levels of triglycerides
- Plasma glucose levels when fasting
- Measurements of damage done to red blood cells by sugars (also known as HbA1C)
As a whole the study found that ginger improved these 8 markers in diabetic patients leading them to conclude that it can be an effective remedy for the prevention of diabetes. While 1600 mg (or 1.6 grams) of ginger sounds like it’s a hefty serving, when you actually factor it all out it comes up as a surprising ¼ teaspoon of ginger.
It’s not too surprising considering its cousin in the Zingiberacea family, turmeric, has been found to be an effective treatment for prediabetes. Keep in mind that while this study focused on diabetic patients, the best thing you can do is work to prevent it before it even happens to you!
There are plenty of benefits to incorporating ginger into your daily diet. Whenever I had a digestive problem as a child, my mother would always give me a glass of ginger ale to sip. And surprisingly, it worked! Ginger has long been used to provide gastrointestinal relief for all sorts of issues. This is because it is an excellent carminative (it reduces intestinal gas), and a spasmolytic (it relaxes the intestinal tract).
Ginger has also been found to contain a powerful anti-inflammatory compound called gingerols. Regularly supplementing with ginger has been shown to reduce the pain levels in people experiencing arthritis. One recent study looking at the effect of ginger on patients with rheumatoid arthritis (RA) concluded that phytochemicals in ginger (like gingerols) may be the key in treating and potentially reversing the damage of RA.
Ways to Use Ginger
Given these great benefits, there’s plenty of reasons why you should start including a ¼ teaspoon of ginger in your daily life. But how? Before I started taking ginger daily, the only times I’d have ginger was the occasional ginger ale. To make things easier for you, here are some of my favorite ginger recipes.
A great way to incorporate ginger into your daily diet is in the form of ginger syrup. Ginger syrup is a great addition to smoothies, tea, hot oatmeal, and on fruit salads.
For those with a sweet tooth, instead of buying candy try out this recipe for homemade ginger candy. Being healthy has never been this sweet!
One of my favorite ways to add ginger to my daily diet is as a homemade ginger ale. It’s anti-inflammatory, treats migraines and relieves pain! With all the store-bought ginger ales loaded with sugar, who knew healthy ginger ale could be possible?
If you’re feeling a cold coming, this lemon ginger tea is a great way to deliver anti-inflammatory and antioxidant relief to your immune system.
Ginger Chicken Wraps
If you’ve got leftover chicken, these ginger chicken lettuce wraps are one of my family’s favorites to have for dinner.
Try these recipes today to reap the benefits of this diabetes-fighting spice!
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