What Ginger Water (Ginger Tea) Can Do For You

Ginger is one of the most widely used dietary condiments around the globe. It can be used in many recipes, but here I am mentioning ginger tea or ginger water. Ginger water (ginger tea) is one of the easiest to prepare teas loved by many people around the world due to its unique taste and several health benefits.

How To Make Ginger Water
What Ginger Water (Ginger Tea) Can Do For You
When To Drink Ginger Water
Ginger Water For Weight Loss
Boiled Ginger Water
Ginger Water Detox
Ginger Water Side Effects

How To Make Ginger Water

Preparation time: 10 -15 minutes

Ingredients

  • One cup of water
  • One half inch long piece of fresh ginger, cut into small pieces
  • Milk (optional). You can use either dairy (cow’s milk*) or non-dairy (soy, oat, almond or rice milk)
  • Raw sugar, maple syrup or brown rice syrup (optional)
  • Crushed clove or green cardamom (for additional flavor)

*According to Ayurveda, cow’s milk acts as a fat and water soluble media for the active ingredients in herbs.

READ MORE: Why You Should Take Ashwagandha With Milk

6 Steps For Making Ginger Tea (Ginger Water)

  1. Take one cup of water in a saucepan and heat it until it comes to a boil.
  2. After it boils, add the ginger pieces to it and simmer over a medium flame for ten minutes.
  3. You can add crushed clove or green cardamom along with the ginger if you want their flavor too in the tea/water.
  4. After ten minutes you can stir in the milk if you want that too. If you add milk then let it boil and simmer for a few more minutes.
  5. Add sugar or maple syrup or brown rice syrup according to your taste.
  6. Remove from heat, pour into your favorite cup and enjoy the tea!

What Ginger Water (Ginger Tea) Can Do For You

Ginger water benefits are numerous. Ginger contains many active ingredients like gingerol, zingerone, paradol, shogoal, zerumbone and more.  Due to these active ingredients ginger has anti-oxidant, anti-inflammatory, anti-microbial, anti-tumor, hepato-protective and analgesic properties.1

These benefits are elaborated in scientific research, however ginger has been used for disease management and to maintain health since ancient times. It’s an important spice in kitchen in various parts of the world including the Indian subcontinent, the place of origin of Ayurveda.

READ MORE: The Top 5 Healing Spices, Ayurvedic Superfoods, B10 Rules For The Body Type Diet

In Ayurveda ginger is referred to as Maha aushadham which means ‘a great medicine’. Ginger has been given this adjective because it can be used in a number of ailments related to the digestive system, respiratory system and more according to the ancient Ayurvedic texts still in use today.

According to these eminent Ayurvedic text books, ginger has the following amazing health benefits.

Ginger is helpful in relieving anorexia, improves taste, balances Vata and Kapha dosha, promotes digestion, relieves constipation, improves libido (aphrodisiac), enhances the voice, helps cough and cold, relieves abdominal colic pain and is useful in asthma and chronic respiratory problems. It is also good for the heart and is useful in elephantiasis. Ginger is anti-inflammatory (relieves swelling and edema) and relieves hemorrhoids, gas and bloating. It relieves fullness of the abdomen, cleanses the tongue and is helpful in throat disorders.2

Now you have enough reasons to admire your cup of ginger tea or ginger water. Ginger water is perfect to counter the Kapha imbalance of the spring season!

READ MORE: The Ultimate Ayurvedic Seasonal Guide To Spring, Kapha Diet: Everything You Need To Know

When To Drink Ginger Water

Ginger water can be taken anytime, but if you are taking it for the purpose of detoxification or to lose weight then it is better to drink it in the morning on an empty stomach. An empty stomach means that there is no other food present which the stomach has to deal with for digestion. This way, all the nutrients in the ginger can be absorbed easily and toxins can be removed easily.

If you are short on time in the morning and unable to take it or if you feel uncomfortable after taking it on an empty stomach, at that point you can take it at another time in the day. But be sure to keep some time gap between your food and the ginger water.

READ MORE: Triphala For Weight Loss, Honey Ginger Remedy For Weight Loss, Immunity, Worms + More

Ginger Water For Weight Loss

Ginger water is helpful in weight loss. As stated in the ancient Ayurvedic text books, it is helpful in pacifying Kapha dosha and conditions related to Kapha dosha like disturbed metabolism. Metabolic problems also lead to weight gain.

According to Ayurveda, excessive weight gain is related to an imbalanced state of Kapha dosha. So ginger is useful in weight loss when combined with a proper diet and exercise. It also promotes digestion and relieves gas, bloating and fullness of the abdomen, all of which are associated with maintaining a healthy weight.

In addition to the Ayurvedic point of view, modern studies also support the weight loss action of ginger. One study suggested that ginger supplementation suppresses obesity induced by a high fat diet and it might be a promising adjuvant therapy for the treatment of obesity and its complications. This study was done on male obese rats.3

Another study showed that men who drank hot ginger beverage after having food felt full for a longer duration. This helps in preventing excessive cravings and avoiding unwanted snacking.4

READ MORE: Kapha Diet: Everything You Need To Know, Kapha Pacifying Date Pickle Recipe, 10 Rules For The Kapha Diet

Boiled Ginger Water

In Ayurvedic medicinal preparations, a Phant Kalapana can be correlated with the term ‘hot infusion’. In an herbal infusion the herb is soaked in boiling water for a period of time until the water attains the medicinal properties of the herb.

Boiled ginger water or hot infusion of ginger has the same numerous health benefits of ginger. It is easier to take boiled ginger water daily rather than taking ginger directly. Moreover boiled ginger water contains water so it also hydrates the body.

Ayurveda says: Boiled water is warm and light, so it will be easy to digest and helpful for people with Vata and Kapha constitution and disorders.

READ MORE: Vata Diet: Everything You Need To Know, Vata Kapha Diet: Everything You Need To Know, Kapha Vata Diet: Everything You Need To Know

Ginger Water Detox

Detoxification is the removal of toxic substances from the body. According to the Ayurvedic text books, ginger is used for Aam Pachan. Aam or Ama means digestive toxins or undigested food that accumulates in the body. Pachan means to dissolve them. Due to this property, it is also given the adjective Shunthi. Shunthi means that which helps in assimilating digestive toxins. Shunthi also means that which purifies the body.5 A ginger water detox is in line with Ayurvedic principles.

In the Ayurvedic text books Charak Samhita and Sushruta Samhita, ginger is also described in context with Aam Pachan.

A clinical study in healthy volunteers showed that ginger promotes gastric emptying and stimulates antral contractions.This study shows the fact that without affecting normal health, ginger helps in removing toxins from the body.

Another study done on rats also shows that ginger extract has a neuroprotective role against the effects of monosodium glutamate toxicity. Thus it helps protect the body from brain toxicity.Another study done on mice also demonstrated ginger’s role in protection against radiation induced toxicity.8

READ MORE: What Really Happens During A Panchakarma Cleanse, Detox Dal: Ayurvedic Winter Soup For Cleansing

Ginger Water Side Effects

Usually, ginger does not have any side effects if taken properly and in the appropriate amounts. However people with a Pitta constitution, bleeding disorder, heart problem, pregnant women and children should take it only after discussing with their health care provider.

If you are taking any supplements which contain ginger then take it under the guidance of a physician. Inform your physician about any other drugs you are taking to avoid any kind of drug interactions.

References
1. Rahmani, Arshad H, et al. “Active Ingredients of Ginger as Potential Candidates in the Prevention and Treatment of Diseases via Modulation of Biological Activities.”International Journal of Physiology, Pathophysiology and Pharmacology, e-Century Publishing Corporation, 2014, www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4106649/.
2. Dravyaguna Vijnana by Aacharya Priyavrat Sharma, Volume 2, page no.335, Chaukhamba Bharati Academy, 2017
3. Saravanan, G, et al. “Anti-Obesity Action of Gingerol: Effect on Lipid Profile, Insulin, Leptin, Amylase and Lipase in Male Obese Rats Induced by a High-Fat Diet.” Advances in Pediatrics., U.S. National Library of Medicine, Nov. 2014, www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/24615565.
4. Mansour, Muhammad S., et al. “Ginger Consumption Enhances the Thermic Effect of Food and Promotes Feelings of Satiety without Affecting Metabolic and Hormonal Parameters in Overweight Men: A Pilot Study.” Advances in Pediatrics., U.S. National Library of Medicine, Oct. 2012, www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3408800/.
5. Adarsh Nighantu, volume 2, page no. 568 by Shri Bapalal Vaidya, Chaukhamba Bharati Academy, 2013
6. Wu, K L, et al. “Effects of Ginger on Gastric Emptying and Motility in Healthy Humans.”Advances in Pediatrics., U.S. National Library of Medicine, May 2008, www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/18403946.
7. Waggas, A M. “Neuroprotective Evaluation of Extract of Ginger (Zingiber Officinale) Root in Monosodium Glutamate-Induced Toxicity in Different Brain Areas Male Albino Rats.”Advances in Pediatrics., U.S. National Library of Medicine, 1 Feb. 2009, www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19579948.
8. Jagetia, G, et al. “Ginger (Zingiber Officinale Rosc.), a Dietary Supplement, Protects Mice against Radiation-Induced Lethality: Mechanism of Action.” Advances in Pediatrics., U.S. National Library of Medicine, Aug. 2004, www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/15453957.

 

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Alka Sharma graduated in Bachelor of Ayurvedic Medicine and Surgery (BAMS) from Dayanand Ayurvedic College, Jalandhar, Punjab, India. She also completed a Masters in Health Care Services. Alka has been practicing as a general Ayurveda practitioner for the last 5 years.

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