From aiding lose weight to managing arthritis and reducing menstrual symptoms, ginger has many proven health benefits. This herb can also do wonder for people living with autoimmune diseases. A new study has suggested that ginger supplements may help in treating autoimmune diseases by controlling inflammation.
The study by researchers at the University of Colorado School of Medicine highlighted the impact of ginger supplementation on neutrophil, a type of white blood cell. A lot of diseases are associated with abnormally overactive neutrophils.
It was found that ginger can help to restrain neutrophil extracellular trap (NET) formation or NETosis. These are microscopic spider web-like structures that are known to trigger inflammation and clotting, and thereby contribute to development of autoimmune diseases, such as lupus, antiphospholipid syndrome and rheumatoid arthritis.
However, the research was conducted on heathy individuals. The results were published in JCI Insight.
The power of ginger
In the clinical trial, healthy volunteers who took a ginger supplement (20 mg of gingerols/day) daily for seven days experienced an increase in the levels of cAMP, a chemical inside the neutrophil. The rise in cAMP levels then inhibited NETosis in response to various disease-relevant stimuli.
This also explains the biological mechanism behind ginger's apparent anti-inflammatory effects.
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The researchers hope that their findings will support health care providers in deciding if taking ginger supplements as part of a treatment plan could be benefit people with inflammatory conditions.
Next, the researchers are planning to conduct clinical trials of ginger in patients with autoimmune and inflammatory diseases.
Other benefits of ginger
Let's look at other health benefits of ginger that are supported by scientific research.
Gingerol, which is the main bioactive compound in ginger, has powerful anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties.
Ginger is helpful in relieving nausea, including pregnancy-related morning sickness and chemotherapy-related nausea.
Ginger is also known to help in weight loss, influenced by it anti-inflammatory properties.
Consumption of ginger has been shown to help reduce symptoms of osteoarthritis, especially osteoarthritis of the knee.
Eating ginger daily may also help lower blood sugar and improve various heart disease risk factors.