Using Fresh Ginger In A Recipe for Health and Happiness!

benefits of gingerWhile making some recipes that included minced ginger this past week, I started thinking about this strange-looking rhizome (kind of looks like a foot…no?) and what other things it’s good for, besides making food taste so good!

I knew a LITTLE bit about the health benefits of ginger from listening to people I know and respect tout its’ ability to help with stomach discomfort and in treating cold and flu symptoms. But I personally have only used it in food…which is a wonderful way to use it!  It just gives dishes a fresh kick of flavor that I love!

But if you’re only using it in cooking…you’re missing out on a whole lot of great natural remedies that people in Asia have been using for thousands of years!

Since we are in the cold and flu season, I thought I’d start with that.


  • Fighting Off Colds and Flu 

Wheezing, coughing, and a runny and clogged nose are common respiratory symptoms during the winter months. Ginger can help ease these symptoms by acting as a decongestant to release phlegm. Ginger is also effective in helping to relieve asthma symptoms. The volatile oils and vitamins in ginger provide antiviral properties that help in the prevention and fast recovery from colds, sore throat, sinusitis and flu.

The University of Maryland Medical Center states that to treat cold and flu symptoms in adults, steep 2 tbsp. of freshly shredded or chopped ginger root in hot water, and drink two to three times a day.

You can also add a few drops of ginger essential oils and a little honey to hot water for a quick and easy ginger tea!



benefits of ginger

  • Combating Stomach Discomfort

Gingers healing properties come from it’s volatile oils (gingerols and shogaols), which are also responsible for it’s pungent taste. The oils cause more digestive enzymes to be produced which helps with the whole digestion process and neutralizes the acids that can cause nausea, cramps and even diarrhea. It also improves food absorption which helps prevent/relieve stomach aches and eliminates bloating due to excessive gas.



benefits of ginger

  • Relieving Cramps, Morning Sickness and Motion Sickness

Ginger has demonstrated a success rate of 75 percent in curing morning sickness and stomach flu. It also relieves migraines and dizziness, and drinking ginger tea can relieve menstrual cramps. If you are a woman suffering from menstrual cramps, try placing a hot towel drenched in ginger tea over the pelvic area to relieve pain and relax the muscles. Drinking a cup of ginger tea can also provide a soothing effect.

To keep from being nauseous during a trip, drink a cup of ginger tea before setting off on your travels.



benefits of ginger

  • Reducing Pain and Inflammation

Ginger is an extremely potent analgesic, acting as an all-natural painkiller without the harmful side effects. It also contains potent anti-inflammatory properties. Ginger tea can ease inflammation of the joints, which is commonly referred to as rheumatoid arthritis. It is also effective in alleviating tired, sore muscles and joints.

A warm ginger tea soak can lessen swelling and puffiness, or rubbing ginger oil on an affected area can help reduce pain. Intake of ginger twice daily has been shown to improve the pain and swelling of the joints in arthritic patients and improves their range of motion.



benefits of ginger

  • Maintaining Normal Blood Circulation

Ginger contains chromium, magnesium and zinc which help to improve blood flow. Consuming a cup of ginger tea can help improve blood flow, as well as help prevent chills, fever and excessive sweating. The active components of ginger, such as minerals and amino acids, help make the blood flow smoothly, and may help prevent the onset of cardiovascular disease.



benefits of ginger

  • Strengthening The Immune System

Packed with antioxidants, ginger can help improve the immune system. Consuming a little bit ginger a day can help foil potential risk of a stroke by inhibiting fatty deposits from the arteries. It also decreases bacterial infections in the stomach, and helps battle a bad cough and throat irritation.



benefits of ginger

  • Relieving Stress and Coping with Depression

Ginger contains a potent antioxidant called gingerol, which helps cleanse the harmful chemicals our bodies produce when we’re worried, helping relieve psychological stress. Ginger also stimulates the production of stomach acid, crucial to digestion, which can break down when we’re stressed. That’s explains how stress can lead to an upset stomach! Hot water with a slice of lemon and chopped ginger is an excellent way to stimulate digestion.

Ginger tea is a remarkable stress reliever because of its comforting and relaxing scent. Simply taking a whiff of ginger essential oil may be all you need to help improve your mood. Also, some compounds present in ginger have the capacity to bind to human serotonin receptors, helping in the treatment and reduction of depression and anxiety.



benefits of ginger
  • Treating Bad Breath

Gargling with ginger and lemon juice is a very good natural remedy for halitosis or bad breath. Add a teaspoon lemon juice and a teaspoon ginger juice (or 2-3 drops of ginger EO) to a glass of warm water and gargle with it once or twice a day.



benefits of ginger

  • Healing Hypopigmentation Scars (White Scars)

Hypopigmented scars, or skin that has lost its’ pigmentation, can often be remedied with ginger. Just cut a fresh slice of ginger root and rub the juice over the skin two or three times a day. Cut a fresh slice each time you do it, and don’t rub the skin too hard. Ginger triggers the melanocytes that are not working under the skin, to react and mimic their neighboring cells. Hypogimented scars will appear to shrink and then blend between 4 to 12 weeks use.




  • Fighting Cancer

A study at the University of Minnesota found that ginger may slow the growth of colorectal cancer cells. Ginger powder has also been proven to induce cell death in ovarian cancer cells.
benefits of ginger


Now that you know all that ginger can do…here’s how to make ginger tea:


  • Clean the root under cold running water, slice into roughly 1/8 to 1/4 inch ovals.
  • Add to boiling water, and simmer for about 30 minutes to 1 1/2 hours (depending on desired strength). Use about 2 to 3 ounces of ginger to half gallon of water.
  • You can add a quartered lemon about ten to fifteen minutes before end of cooking if desired. Serve hot.
  • Other options: Add honey or cinnamon. Both add to the taste and flavor of the ginger tea…and both have their own very beneficial health benefits. Honey is an excellent medium for transmitting the benefits of herbs such as ginger to the body, and cinnamon has a lot of the same properties as ginger, including relieving common digestive annoyances.


You can also add a few drops of ginger essential oils and a little honey to hot water for a quick and easy ginger tea!


After reading all these…I’m off to make a spot of ginger tea right now…


What are some of the ways you like to use ginger?




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  1. Patty says

    Love ginger! Especially in ginger tea. This is a recipe I heard on the radio years ago. I prepare a batch and keep it in a jug in the fridge and heat it one cup at a time. When my children were school aged, I would bring them a warm cup of ginger tea to sip in bed at bedtime. Nice treat and helped them sleep (and stay healthy1).

    a piece of ginger, the size of your thumb or slightly larger, washed and finely grated
    1 whole lemon (wash and leave whole! Do not cut!)
    8 cups water
    honey or sugar to taste

    Add ginger, honey or sugar and the whole lemon to the water and bring to a boil. Turn down and cook at a slow boil for 25 -30 minutes, until the lemon is soft. The softer the lemon, the more juice and pulp you’ll get. Remove from heat and with a sharp knife, slit the lemon. Press with a fork to remove all the juice and pulp. Serve warm or hot. Enjoy!!

  2. Carol says

    Dumb question here… do you peel off the outside skin of the ginger before using it , like grating it for Patty’s recipe above? I’ve never really used ginger before but I just bought some yesterday and not sure how to use it. Thanks.

  3. KimH says

    I love ginger tea. Ginger is very stimulating so I use it every once in a while when I need a boost of energy.
    I dont remember reading about its uses in arthritis but I’ll definitely remember it & give it a try.

    I keep a lot of ginger in my freezer instead of the frig. It stays fresh & doesnt spoil as it does in the veggie crisper. When I need some, I have it on hand.

  4. Sandra says

    Wow, thanks! I knew ginger was good for you but didn’t know all of this. A little goes a long way and I never use it all at once so I peel it and throw it in the freezer. When you need it you barely need to defrost it and it’s good as when you first bought it. I make a hot tea w/ it by using an infuser w/ ginger slices and hot water. But when it cools I add lime juice and some sweetner (stevia but you can use sugar) and voila! Ginger limeade. It’s soooo good iced. Plus lime is full of vit C so it’s awesome when you’re sick. And even when you’re not. Also when I traveled to Australia I was bale to buy ginger tablets to take to avoid sea sickness. Worked like a charm and drug free!

      • Susan says

        Fresh is always better, but I have had ginger capsules work for nausea. It probably helps too if you use a high quality brand. There is also a drink my ND told me about years ago-it is “Reed’s Ginger Brew”-All Natural Jamaican Style Ginger Beer (not alcoholic). We can find it at a local grocery store’s ‘natural’ section. There are 3 strengths-I recommend starting at 1.

  5. Veronica says

    I am off to do this now! I usually use ginger root in smoothies (my version of the
    naked juice). I place 1 apple, a handful of spinach, some baby carrots, a quarter inch
    slice of ginger root, pineapple and its juice in a blender. It looks scary at first, but I
    love the taste and the fact I know exactly what’s in it. If its too chunky you can juice it.
    I choose not to because of the waste. Thanks for sharing your recipe!

  6. Charla says

    Just last night I had a stomach ache and finally figured out it was gas. I googled home remedies and ginger was mentioned everywhere! Fortunately I had some ginger tea bags so drank the tea. Wow! I was amazed how quickly it helped. I am definitely a believer. I can see how soothing it would be if you had a cold. It has a
    Warming sensation when you drink it.

  7. Glenda M says

    Glad you posted this. I had severe asthma for years. couldn’t stand the scent of perfume and other odors. After eating Chinese foods on a regular basis my asthma has improved 95%. I know it has to be from the ginger in the Chinese food since I was hitting my inhaler every 4 hours.
    It really is great for so many things.
    Thanks Jillee for posting yet another awesome post.

  8. Patty J says

    I’m sipping my ginger tea as I write this comment. I’m glad you wrote this post Jillee, I had forgotten how much I liked my version of your tea. Here’s how I make mine:
    4 Cups boiling water
    2-3 Tbsp minced fresh ginger
    1 cinnamon stick (I break mine into tiny pieces with a hammer)
    1/2 fresh lemon, washed well

    Once the water comes to a boil I add the ginger and cinnamon pieces. Squeeze the lemon juice into the water and then drop the lemon half in the water too. Let the mixture steep over low heat for 15 minutes. Strain, sweeten with honey and enjoy.

  9. says

    When I was pregnant and nauseous in my first trimester, I would cut a small chunk of ginger in the morning and place it in a ziplock. If I was especially nauseous and unable to eat or drink for the moment at work, I’d open my little bag and take a big whiff – even the scent helped ease the nausea!

  10. trisha says

    I peel the fresh ginger with a spoon held upside down. [demo is on YouTube] Then shred the whole thing. Spread the shreds out on a cookie sheet and freeze them. Then crumble them up and store in a wide mouth mason jar in the freezer. Easy to take out a pinch for adding to my water [along with lemon slice/cucumber slice/peppermint leaves - any or all]. Ginger shreds are good in apple cider too.

  11. Christy says

    I sprinkle ginger on just about all my food and grate fresh ginger into my smoothies and into a lot of my cooking if I do cook. I think I will try the tea, not much of a tea fan but willing to try anything to see if the pain goes away or lessens .. chronic pain is for the birds, I just want relief of some sort and I know that ginger helps with pain (hence the reason I carry the spice in my purse).. tea time sounds good right now

  12. Sharon says

    Hi, I have been making pickled ginger for my Mum who was diagnosed with a rare form of breast cancer in July of this year.
    She is fortunate not to have the kind of chemo that causes nausea but had been craving ginger for a while and I googled a recipe.
    Her oncologist has told us that it is one of the best things she could be doing for herself so we will continue with it as long as Mum wants to eat it!
    It is very pleasant to eat and keeps well in the fridge.
    Thanks for a wonderful site, I really enjoy your posts every day.
    Love and hugs from Cape Town. xx

  13. deniseinark says

    There is no reason to have to buy powdered ginger if you have a freezer and microplane. Wash the root when you get it home, let it dry and put it in a bag. Keep it in the freezer. When you need ginger, take out the root, decide how much length you need, and grate to that place. I usually just eyeball that place but you could nick it with a knife. No peeling needed. Put it back in the freezer when the grating is finished.

  14. says

    OMG thank you so much for posting this! I had a horrible head cold and sinus infection this weekend. After I read this I immediately ran to the store and bought some ginger (for the first time in my life!). I love this tea! It was so soothing! Thanks :D

  15. Tanya says

    After reading this I decided it must be put on my to do list for today. I had no idea ginger was that good for the body. I must say, as I sit here sipping my first steaming cup, it is divine! I have suffered from severe bouts of depression for 15 years, I also have heart disease (I had a heart attack 4 years ago, I was 33) and I have arthritis. Any help I can get from nature is welcomed. And if it helps me to take less anti inflammatory ibuprofen, all the better!

    • Becky says

      Hi Brunella, I have been wondering the same thing about ginger plants. Did you ever get your answer. I have many ginger lily plants in my yard also. For those of you who don’t know, Ginger plants produce beautiful flowers and once you plant the root of the plant in the ground it comes back every year and multiplies. They smell just like the ginger roots you buy from your produce department.

  16. Amy says

    Ginger is also great for helping mastitis. I unfortunately have had mastitis several times since I began nursing and one of the times my friend gave me ginger to get rid of it. I was absolutely amazed at how quickly it cleared up once I started using it. You just grate the ginger and let it steep in hot water then dip a wash cloth and put it directly on the affected area. I will use it from now on if I ever get it again.

  17. Aldona says

    One of the ladies from my church makes the best ginger drink. She mixes boiling water with grated ginger, fresh lemon juice and honey. Don’t know the proportions, but you can adjust them to your taste I suppose. Perfect for cold evenings. She gives me a big jar that I keep in the fridge for up to several days and reheat one glass at the time.

  18. Sylvia says

    hey! i live with my boyfriend and he get sick really often. So i got a big jar, and filled it with half honey. then i blitzed tons of ginger in a food processor and filled the rest of the jar with ginger. Then with chopsticks i mixed it all up and put it in the fridge.

    you can have it for a very long time since honey preserves it. When you want some, you just boil some water, take a couple tablespoons of the honey-ginger mix, put them in a cup, fill up with the hot water et voila! honey ginger tea!!!

    now he never gets sick!!!!

    and the jar in the fridge last a very long time! quick and easy!!


  19. Lucille Chamapgne says

    I love your site! I enjoy cooking with ginger. I always have some on hand. My mom taught me to peel the root and submerge it in some sherry then keep it in the fridge. When you want to use some, all you do is take it out and shred or slice. The sherry has a wonderful ginger scent and taste. I add some of the sherry to many dishes that call for the ginger. Just top off the container with more sherry to keep the ginger root covered and pop it back in the fridge.

  20. Anna says

    I used to be prone to having dry cough during the winter months. Doctors said its an allergy either to food or the weather! So I ended up taking antihistamines until I recently spoke my mum and she just told me to make a ginger drink with Manuka honey, sprinkle it with salt and black pepper. Voila! It worked like magic. Two winters now without antihistamines and no dry hacking cough.

  21. Honey says

    this is all great info everyone! i just finished drinking an anti-inflammatory drink with ginger.
    1/2 fresh pineapple
    piece of ginger root, grated (peeled or not)
    1 lime
    1/2 teaspoon of tumeric poweder
    (try to use all organic if possible)

    juice or blend together and enjoy! this works wonders for women suffering w/women issues :)

  22. Maile K says

    We make ours in a tea kettle, about an inch of ginger chopped and a stick of cinnamon in about 2 quarts of water. Boil 10 minutes then steep overnight. Strain and serve. We prefer it hot with raw honey and raw acv added.
    We drink this often. Sore muscles, upset stomach, illness, headaches. This is our cure-all. And it works.

  23. says

    Well, I am a tea drinker. I drink two to three cups of tea per day and I always add ginger root to whatever flavor of tea I am having. At the moment I am experimenting with ginger and green tea as an aid to weight loss, I know that green tea is supposed to help you lose weight but with the added benefits of ginger it just might excel the weight loss! LOL (I am hoping anyway!) I just fix a cup at a time with a tea bag, and two or three slices of peeled ginger root, and honey or sugar. Love it! I especially love it with Earl Grey breakfast tea, Constant Comment, and green tea with lemon. Mmmm!

  24. Devorah Standish says

    Influenza (flu), on the other hand, is a viral infection that mimics a cold except that it starts forcefully with symptoms of fatigue, fever, and respiratory congestion. While more than 100 different virus types can cause a common cold, only influenza virus types A, B, and C cause flu. More severe cases of influenza can lead to life-threatening illnesses such as pneumonia.`’-:

    Until next time <

  25. CAPT Yong Allen says

    I am Korean American. I am glad someone is appreciative of wonderful ginger. Koreans have known medicinal benefits of ginger for last 4000 years. I love ginger in kimchi, stews, soybean soup, seaweed soup and Sangang tea ( Korean ginger tea ). thanks for letting the world be informed about the benefits of natural remedies. We Homo Sapiens should use more of what nature offers us then maybe Homo Sapiens will try preserve and save nature of instead trying HARD to destroy it.

  26. Fabiola says

    In helping any ligament, muscle or any injured part of the body. Cut slices of ginger and put them directly in to the affected area and use them during the night, its MAGICAL! It could be sometimes a little strong in your skin, so if you feel that it is too hot just remove it.
    But really try it, it is amazing!

  27. Lynette says

    Instant ginger tea mix. Peel root and cut up into food processor and pulse until chopped well. Put chopped ginger in a glass jar and pour in enough raw honey to cover ginger. Stir well. Cover and store in refrigerator.

    To make tea put a heaping tablespoon of the honey/ginger mixture in a cup and cover with very hot water. Don’t boil because honey in its raw form is anti microbial. Steep for at least 4 minutes. I don’t mind the ginger floating as most of it will settle but you could strain if you like.

  28. says

    I love all these different ways to use ginger. My way i will share will you.
    Wash and chop into manageable chunks about 6 large whole ginger roots. Add 2 cups water to blender and roots and blend well, you may have to do this about three times. Add to a large bowel until all chopped up. then strain all ginger with cheese cloth and keep only juice part. squeeze 12 lemons and add juice. add 1/2 cup honey and keeps in fridge for a month or so. Each night i pour 1/4cup to tea cup with 1cup boiling water and tea bag of choice, so good.

  29. Alice says

    Slice lemons, layer in a jar.. Lemon, honey ginger slices… Layer to the top … Cover leave in fridge for one month… It’s naturally preserved.. Then poor a little and add hot water… So soothing .. A lady from Hong Kong gave me this recipe. Enjoy. I drink a cup every day..


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