Ginger is a spicy tuber that grows underneath the ground. It is cultivated mainly in the warmer regions, but is available throughout the world. It has for many centuries been used as a medicine to relieve pain, inflammation, nausea, and also to help relax muscles.
You can purchase fresh ginger, as well as powdered, pickled or crystallized ginger in most grocery stores year round. However, fresh ginger will always have more benefits as it contains more gingerols. It is natural and can be added to your diet even when you are feeling good, as it can help you to maintain good health without any side effects.
The active ingredients that are found in ginger are the volatile oils known as gingerols and shogaols. Gingerols are changed into shogaols during drying or heating the ginger, but according to studies both oils are effective. These are warming oils which have a similar effect as capsaicin, only they are not as strong. The warming sensation not only helps to soothe and relax muscles, but will help with other common ailments as well.
Ginger not only helps to decrease the absorption of cholesterol in the blood and liver, but it is also effective in reducing triglycerides in the blood. This helps to increase the blood flow throughout the body, so that the blood vessels and surrounding muscles can relax.
The warming effect also helps to warm the body internally when ingested. This helps to soothe and relax the stomach muscles, thus helping you find relief from stomach cramps, nausea, and vomiting. Drinking ginger tea is one of the quickest ways that you can find relief from these ailments, as it is more readily absorbed into your body and bloodstream.
Ginger is an excellent remedy to help you to relax sore and stiff muscles at the end of your day, or after a strenuous workout. The soothing effect of the gingerols can have you feeling better in as little as 30 minutes. Ginger massage oils work well, but 1/4 cup of freshly grated ginger in a hot bath works just as well to help soothe and relax your muscles.
The joint pain caused by arthritis can also affect the ligaments, tendons and surrounding muscle tissues, thus causing them to become stiff and swollen due to inflammation. Ginger is very effective in helping to relieve the inflamed and stiff muscles, as well as the joint pain. This is due to the antioxidants which help to remove toxins from the inflamed area, as well as the gingerols which can warm and relax the muscles and joints so that you can move again without pain or stiffness.
To find immediate relief you can apply grated ginger in a compress to the inflamed and stiff muscles, or you can use ginger massage oils to massage the inflamed area. However, to avoid inflammation and stiffness from reoccurring you should make ginger a part of your daily diet. It goes well with many dishes such as stir-fries, and meat and vegetable dishes, as well as in your juice or tea.