Ginger and lemon water is often associated with health. Ginger (Zingiber officinale) is a perennial herbaceous plant native to Asia, today cultivated in China, India and in many tropical and subtropical countries. Since ancient times, ginger has been cultivated for its therapeutic properties. The rhizome of ginger is used both fresh and dry, and can be found on the market both with the cortical part (gray or black ginger) and hulled (white ginger). Moreover, it is also found in powder and in brine. It has a pungent, almost spicy flavor, and notes that also depend on the variety. What are the benefits of ginger? Are there any contraindications? And how to prepare ginger and lemon water? Let’s see!
BENEFITS OF GINGER AND LEMON WATER
Ginger is today considered a nutraceutical plant mainly due to the presence of gingerols. Among the gingerols, the main active ingredient is 6-gingerol, responsible for the spicy taste. Dried ginger also contains shogaoli, which give it a sour note.
The benefits of ginger and lemon water as far as we know have not been examined. However, ginger has been the subject of some studies aimed at understanding its beneficial properties for health. There is not much research, and further investigation would be needed to better understand if and how much benefit it can produce. However, some studies have been conducted. Let’s see some of the results obtained.
A 2010 study by Chris Black, of the Kinesiology Department of Georgia College & State University, tested the effectiveness of ginger to decrease muscle pain.
Two experiments were conducted, one by administering 2 g of raw ginger, and another by administering 2 g of heated ginger. Daily consumption of ginger produced a moderate to large reduction in muscle pain caused by eccentric exercise. No differences were found between the use of raw or heat-treated ginger.
H3: Ginger and osteoarthritis
A study conducted between New Zealand and Australia, published in 2010, has experimented with the use of ginger compresses as an aid for 10 people with osteoarthritis symptoms. A cotton cloth soaked in a warm ginger infusion was applied for 30 minutes over the kidney region; later, people rested for 20 minutes. Some positive effects have been detected. The study concludes that controlled research with more elderly people is needed to further explore the effects of therapy.
Fasting blood sugar
According to a study published 2015, it appears that oral administration of powdered ginger supplement could improve fasting blood sugar. Ginger could help reduce the risk of some chronic complications of type 2 diabetes.
According to another study published in 2015, dietary supplementation with ginger and curcuma longainhibits the arginase activity and helps prevent hypercholesterolemia. These activities of ginger and turmeric, according to the study, could be the reasons behind their use in herbal medicine for the treatment of various cardiovascular diseases.
The antioxidant activity of various species of ginger has long been known. A 2017 study indicates that the antioxidant activity is due to a high content of polyphenols, and that the polyphenol content of the extracts varies depending on the extraction method. The study states that more studies are needed to isolate the active compounds of ginger and investigate how they work.
Another study, published in 2018, combined ginger with green tea and black tea, and found that ginger significantly decreased the antioxidant activity of tea. The study states that further studies are needed to understand the causes of the findings.
A study has investigated the effectiveness of ginger in the treatment of migraine, concluding that the addition of ginger to non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs can contribute to the treatment of migraine attack.
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GINGER AND LEMON WATER WEIGHT LOSS
Ginger and lemon herbal tea is often used for weight loss. Well, does it work?
A study was conducted involving 10 overweight men, and in some cases administering 2 g of ginger powder dissolved in a hot drink. No effects of ginger on glucose, insulin, lipids or inflammatory markers have been recorded.
However, among other things some subjective feelings of satiety were detected, and it was noted that, in the case of ginger intake, lower hunger, lower prospective food intake and greater feeling of satiety were reported. The result suggests that consumption of ginger may help modulate the appetite.
A 2019 study examined 14 studies to understand what the effect of ginger intake on weight loss, glycemic control and lipid profiles of overweight or obese people is. Research has shown that ginger intake reduced body weight, waist-hip ratio, fasting glucose level and insulin resistance index (HOMA-IR). Furthermore, the intake of ginger increased HDL cholesterol but did not affect insulin, body mass index, triglycerides, total and LDL cholesterol levels.
GINGER AND LEMON WATER CONTRAINDICATIONS
Drinking ginger and lemon water seems safe for most people.
In the event that you are taking medication, as with any herb or food supplement, be cautious: there may be harmful interactions to health (a doubt has been raised, for example, that ginger may interact with anticoagulants).
The side effects of ginger are rare, but excessive consumption can cause heartburn, intestinal gas, burning in the mouth. Avoid consuming more than 4 grams in a single day, in any form.
If you suffer from diseases, especially if you are suffering from heart disease, diabetes or gallstones, before taking ginger and lemon water and generally ginger consult your doctor. The same is true if you are about to undergo surgery, if you are pregnant or breastfeeding.
Ginger and lemon water and pregnancy
A study published in 2017 involved two panels, one composed of 50 gynecologists and other physicians who are often consulted by pregnant women suffering from vomiting nausea from pregnancy, and the other composed of 50 women who suffered from such nausea and vomiting.
28 potential harms were brought to the attention of the participants, and a consensus was reached on 21 (75%) of them. Some of the points to be analyzed during clinical consultations are the possible damages deriving from the anticoagulant effects of ginger and the risk of potential allergic reactions. 14 potential benefits were also presented, and consensus was reached on 13 (92.9%) of them.
A meta-study published in 2012 examined some studies related to the use of ginger for the treatment of nausea and vomiting during pregnancy. The systematic review of the studies indicates that the number of studies is limited, and that the results of the studies are variable. Ginger did not have a significant impact on vomiting episodes. The same systematic review indicates that ginger, in the examined studies, does not represent a risk for side effects or adverse events during pregnancy.
GINGER AND LEMON WATER RECIPE
Preparing ginger and lemon water is simple. Let’s see ingredients and method.
- 1 liter of water
- ½ or 1 teaspoon of ginger
- 1 lemon
To prepare ginger and lemon water, follow these simple steps:
- Wash the part of ginger you intend to use
- Grate between half a teaspoon of ginger (a little less than 1 g) to a teaspoon.
- Boil about 1 liter of water in a saucepan.
- When the water boils, add the ginger.
- Remove the saucepan from the heat, and leave the ginger in the water for about 10 minutes.
- If you want, you can filter the decoction to hold the pieces of ginger.
- Squeeze a lemon and add the juice and a bit of pulp.
You can drink hot or cold ginger and lemon water. If desired, add a tablespoon of honey. To maintain the properties of the honey, add it to the ginger and lemon water when it is warm (and not hot). Once the ginger and lemon water has cooled, you can keep it in the refrigerator.
SOME REFERENCES ANDBIBLIOGRAPHY
- Black CD, Herring MP, Hurley DJ, O’Connor PJ., Ginger (Zingiber officinale) reduces muscle pain caused by eccentric exercise, J Pain. 2010 Sep;11(9):894-903. doi: 10.1016/j.jpain.2009.12.013. Epub 2010 Apr 24.
- Dugasani S, Pichika MR, Nadarajah VD, Balijepalli MK, Tandra S, Korlakunta JN, Comparative antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects of -gingerol, -gingerol, -gingerol and -shogaol, J Ethnopharmacol. 2010 Feb 3;127(2):515-20. doi: 10.1016/j.jep.2009.10.004. Epub 2009 Oct 13.
- Tessa Therkleson, Ginger compress therapy for adults with osteoarthritis, J Adv Nurs. 2010 Oct; 66(10): 2225–2233. doi: 10.1111/j.1365-2648.2010.05355.x
- Nafiseh Khandouzi, Farzad Shidfar, Asadollah Rajab, Tayebeh Rahideh, Payam Hosseini, and Mohsen Mir Taherif, The Effects of Ginger on Fasting Blood Sugar, Hemoglobin A1c, Apolipoprotein B, Apolipoprotein A-I and Malondialdehyde in Type 2 Diabetic Patients, Iran J Pharm Res. 2015 Winter; 14(1): 131–140.
- Akinyemi AJ, Oboh G, Ademiluyi AO, Boligon AA, Athayde ML, Effect of Two Ginger Varieties on Arginase Activity in Hypercholesterolemic Rats, J Acupunct Meridian Stud. 2016 Apr;9(2):80-7. doi: 10.1016/j.jams.2015.03.003. Epub 2015 Mar 18.
- Hatice Tohma, İlhami Gülçin, Ercan Bursal, Ahmet C. Gören, Saleh H. Alwasel, Ekrem Köksal, Antioxidant activity and phenolic compounds of ginger (Zingiber officinale Rosc.) determined by HPLC-MS/MS,Food Measure (2017) 11: 556.
- Aliakbarlu, Javad; Sadaghiani, Surur K.; Mohammadi, Shadieh, Ginger (Zingiber Officinale) Decreases Antioxidant Activity of Black and Green Tea, Current Nutrition & Food Science, Volume 14, Number 5, 2018, pp. 386-390(5), Bentham Science Publishers.
- Martins LB, Rodrigues AMDS, Rodrigues DF, Dos Santos LC, Teixeira AL, Ferreira AVM, Double-blind placebo-controlled randomized clinical trial of ginger ( Zingiber officinale Rosc.) addition in migraine acute treatment, Cephalalgia. 2019 Jan;39(1):68-76. doi: 10.1177/0333102418776016. Epub 2018 May 16.
- National Institutes of Health, Ginger