Ginger (or Zingiber Officinale) is a rhizome that has been revered for its aromatic, pungent and spicy flavor as well as its medicinal qualities. It’s been used in traditional recipes and herbal concoctions for more than a couple of millennia. In fact, its scientific name, “zingiber”, is translated as “known already by the ancients” in Arabic and Indian languages. Pliny (AD 23 – AD 75) said that ginger originated in the land of the Troglodytes or Cave-dwellers which was located around Southeast Egypt, Ethiopia or Somalia. Spice Traders transported and sold ginger throughout Africa, Asia, India as well as Arabia and Europe.
Throughout Africa, ginger was used to create many delicious beverages. These recipes were carried to the Caribbean where they were perfected into ginger beer.
Traditionally, Ginger has been used to treat colds, the flu, gas, indigestion and nausea. It is a natural anti-inflammatory and powerful anti-oxidant that reduces or prevents the generation of free radicals.
The rhizome has pain-relieving properties that have been shown to reduce the menstrual and arthritic pain. It has also been effectively used in the treatment of migraines.
Ginger has antitumor properties due to its volatile oils, gingerol and paradol. These oils enable it to kill cancer by initiating programmed cell death and self-digestion.
Ginger also has strong antibacterial properties. It has proven to be more effective in fighting staph infections than antibiotics and, unlike antibiotics, ginger eliminates toxic bacteria while allowing beneficial intestinal bacteria to grow.