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Tuesday, August 21, 2018
There are more than 115 phytochemical components in ginger – no wonder it’s considered a top superfood
It wouldn’t be far-fetched to think that Hippocrates was referring to ginger (Zingiber officinale) in his famous quote about letting food be your medicine and your medicine your food: It’s a spice that is heavily used around the world, both as a dietary condiment and a medicinal plant. It’s a member of the Zingiberaceae family, in which turmeric (Curcuma longa) and cardamom belong. Most people know ginger for its peppery and slightly sweet flavor (as well as for its distinctly strong and spicy aroma); however, only a few people know how to make the most out of this superfood.
A lot of the superfoods that we know contain chemical components that have been identified with a particular health benefit. Ginger has that, and so much more – to note, scientists have identified at least 115 constituents from various types of fresh and dried ginger, each with a variety of analytical components. Gingerols, in particular, form the most abundant components in fresh ginger, together with other composites such as paradols, zingerone, and shogaols. What’s more, these components transform into other bioactive compounds once these are cooked or dried which also have potent antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and anti-cancer properties.
In a study published in Obstetrics & Gynecology, researchers suggested that anywhere from 250 mg to 4.8 g – roughly just under two tablespoons – of fresh or dried ginger a day is ideal. The dosage can vary, of course, depending on how it’s consumed, as well as its intended use. (MORE)