Monthly Archives: September 2015


Ginger as a Supplement Pt. 5

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  1. Prevent Cancer

cancer cell

Cancer is involves uncontrolled growth of abnormal cells.


Ginger has been researched as a treatment for cancer.   Several forms of cancer were looked at in the studies. The benificial anti-cancer properties are said to be related 6-gingerol.  This is found in large amounts in raw ginger.


In a 30 individuals study, 2 grams of ginger extract each day reduced inflammatory signalling molecules in the colon.  However, in a later study using individuals with a high risk of colon cancer, the researchers did not confirm these findings.


There is some limited evidence which suggests that ginger could be effective against pancreatic cancer, breast cancer and ovarian cancer. More research is needed.  But what would talking a little raw ginger daily hurt.


  1. Improve Brain Function and Protect Against Alzheimer’s Disease

a memory

Oxidative stress and chronic inflammation are believed to be some of the key factors related to Alzheimer’s disease and age-related cognitive decline.


There are animal studies that tend to indicate that the antioxidants and bioactive compounds in ginger may inhibit brain inflammatory responses.


Further some research indicates that ginger can enhance brain function directly. In one study, which used 60 middle-aged women, ginger extract was said to improve reaction time and working memory.


There are many animal studies which show that ginger can protect against age-related decline in brain function.


  1. The Active Ingredient in Ginger Can Help Fight Infections


Gingerol, which is that bioactive part of fresh ginger, can help lower the risk of infections.


With ginger extract can inhibit a wide range of bacteria.


Ginger has proved to be effective against the oral bacteria  which are linked to inflammatory diseases in the gums, like gingivitis and periodontitis.
Fresh ginger some say may be good to use against the RSV virus, a common cause of respiratory infections.



Ginger as a Supplement Pt. 4

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  1. Reduce Menstrual Pain With Ginger

menstrual pain

Dysmenorrhea or menstrual pain is pain that a woman has related to her menstrual cycle.


Traditionally ginger has been used for pain relief, including menstrual pain.


In one study there was 150 women who were instructed to take 1 gram of ginger powder per day, during the first 3 days of their menstrual cycle. Ginger was found to reduce their pain as effectively as the drugs mefenamic acid and ibuprofen.


  1. Lower Cholesterol Levels With Ginger


High levels of LDL lipoproteins  which is the bad cholesterol are thought by many to an increased risk of heart disease.


There was a 45-day study including 85 individuals who had high cholesterol, 3 grams of ginger in powder form was seen to significantly reduce most cholesterol markers.


This study was supported by an animal study in which hypothyroid rats were ginger extract and lowered LDL cholesterol to a similarly equal effect as the cholesterol-lowering drug atorvastatin.
Both studies found reductions in total cholesterol and blood triglycerides.


ginger pic

Ginger as a Supplement Pt. 3

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5. Blood Sugars and Heart Disease

This is a new area of research.  Ginger may have some anti-diabetic supplement possibilities.

blood sugar

In a 2015 study using 41 participants with type 2 diabetes, it was discovered that using 2 grams of ginger powder daily lowered the participants fasting blood sugar by 12%.


It was seen to improve HbA1c, which is a marker for long-term blood sugar levels.  The result was a 10% reduction over a period of 12 weeks.


There was further observed a 28% reduction in the ApoB/ApoA-I ratio, and a 23% reduction in markers for oxidized lipoproteins. These are known risk factors for developing heart disease.


This was just one small study. These findings are very interesting, but a larger study is needed. But what is the harm in taking ginger now.


6. Chronic Indigestion – Dyspepsia

Chronic indigestion (dyspepsia) is a recurring pain or discomfort in the upper stomach.


Most scientists believe that slow emptying of the stomach is a cause of indigestion.  Ginger has the ability to speed up emptying of the stomach in people with this condition.

In one study using soup, ginger reduced stomach emptying time some 16 to 12 minutes.  In another study with 24 healthy individuals, 1.2 grams of ginger powder taken before a meal was found to accelerate emptying of the stomach by 50%.



Ginger as a Supplement Pt. 2

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3. Ginger Mary Reduce Muscle Pain and Soreness

Ginger has been proven effective against exercise related muscle pain.


There is one study showing that consuming 2 grams of ginger per day, for 11 days, significantly mitigates muscle pain from elbow exercises related pain.


Ginger is not an instant cure, rather it effectiveness may be seen in reducing the day-to-day progression of muscle pain. This process is thought to be from its property as an anti-inflammatory.  


4. Osteoarthritis

Osteoarthritis involves degeneration of the joints in the body, leading to symptoms like joint pain and stiffness.


In a study 247 people with osteoarthritis of the knee took ginger extract and had less pain and required less pain medication.


In another study it was discovered that combining of ginger, mastic, cinnamon and sesame oil, topically applied, reduces pain and stiffness in osteoarthritis patients.


Ginger as a Supplement Pt. 1




I first became interested with ginger when reading about turmeric and its use as an add on at M.D. Anderson cancer hospital.  They use turmeric, cumin, and ginger combo tablets.  Ginger comes from the same botanical family as turmeric.  So I checked into ginger as a supplement.

Ginger is packed full of nutrients and bioactive compounds that have benefits for your body.

What follows are several beneficial uses of ginger that are seen in scientific research.

As always in all my writing nothing in this study is intended to be medical advice.  It is simply information that I have gained and pass on.  


1. Ginger Contains Gingerol




Gingerol  has medicinal properties in ginger which is a flowering plant that originated from China.

It is classified in the Zingiberaceae family, which is closely related to turmeric, cardomon and galangal.

The underground part of the stem is commonly used as a spice. This is what you find in the grocery called ginger root, or simply ginger.

Ginger has been used in various forms of traditional and alternative medicine.  It historically has helped digestion, reduced nausea and helped to fight the flu and common cold, to name a few.

Ginger has be used in several forms, fresh, dried, powdered, or as an oil or juice.  Manufacturers sometimes add it to processed foods and cosmetics. Of course we all know it as a common ingredient in recipes.

The special smell and taste of ginger flows from its oils, including gingerol.

Gingerol works as the most active bioactive compound in ginger for most of its reported medicinal properties. It acts as a powerful anti-inflammatory with added antioxidant effects.


2. Ginger for Nausea, especially morning sickness

stomach flew

Ginger appears to treat effectively many types of nausea.

Its long history of use as a sea sickness remedy is well documented, and some research indicates that it may be as effective as modern prescription medication.

Ginger also has a history of relieving nausea and vomiting following surgery.  Further it may help many cancer patients undergoing chemotherapy with similar nausea.

It may be the most effective and has the best history when it is used for pregnancy-related nausea, such as morning sickness.  (Talk to your doctor.)

There is a review of 12 studies which included a total of 1,278 pregnant women  The conclusion suggests that 1.1-1.5 grams of ginger can significantly reduce symptoms of nausea. However, ginger had no noted effect on vomiting episodes.  But that was just not addressed. That is still possible; no evidence says nothing except there is no evidence.

Ginger is considered safe, but talk to your doctor before taking large amounts during pregnancy. Some believe that large amounts can raise the risk of miscarriage, but there are currently no studies to support this. It may be an old wives tale or not.  Notice that said large amounts.  Reasonable usage is considered safe.  

Added as a heavy spice in food or drink is not considered a large amount.  I personally would think that not exceeding the 1-1.5 gram dosage would be dangerous during pregnancy, as that was used in research.  Start low. Work up.  When it works, stop and be happy.  But do not exceed that.

Uses outside pregnancy are clearly considered without question safe.  But remember you can drink enough water that it is harmful to your health.

cinnamon tree

Cinnamon as a Supplement? Pt. 11

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27. Parkinson’s Disease


While little research has been done on cinnamon and Parkinson’s disease, cinnamon may provide excit possibilities. A July 2014 study by Rush University Medical Center discovered that cinnamon can reverse the biomechanical, cellular and anatomical changes that are observed in Parkinson’s afflicted mice brains.


28. ADHD


Some people have started using cinnamon as an alternative treatment for children with ADHD or ADHD like symptoms. The most noted study of this comes out of Taiwan which used cinnamon oil aromatherapy.



I hope you enjoyed this series. Remember to look a previous parts for important warnings.


Cinnamon as a Supplement? Pt. 10

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25. Depression/Reduced Irritability/Mood Enhancer

a depress

The ancients say that cinnamon odor is a good cure for the blues. Dr. Bryan Raudenbush, Director of Undergraduate Research and associate professor of psychology at Wheeling Jesuit University in Wheeling, WV in a  study found that the scent of cinnamon reduced driver irritability.


Cinnamon may be an excellent cure for depression from another direction.  Some evidence indicates that some types of gastrointestinal  bacteria may make you more susceptible to depression. Cinnamon works as an effective stomach antibacterial agent and may help you eliminate the bad bacteria. However remember cinnamon removes both bad and good bacteria from your stomach.  You should repopulate your body with good bacteria by drinking a good probiotic or eating fermented food after taking cinnamon.


26. Virus Fighter


Research is showing that cinnamon is a potent virus fighter. An Indian study claimed a cinnamon derived procyanidin polymer can turn HIV infected people into HIV controllers (they carry the virus but do not develop full blown AIDS). This study discoved that Eugenol (the primary ingredient in Ceylon Cinnamon Leaf Oil was effectives against Herpes. And Cinnamaldehye (the primary ingredient in ceylon cinnamon bark oil) works effectively against the adenovirus according to this study, an infection that causes most illness in the respiratory system.



Cinnamon as a Supplement? Pt. 9


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23. Alzheimer’s Disease


An Israeli study from at the University of Tel Aviv showed evidence that cinnamon can delay the effects of five strains of Alzheimer’s inducing genes. Another study found that orally administered cinnamon extract has had good success in even correcting cognitive impairment in Alzheimer’s disease in animal models.


Recent discoveries indicate two  cinnamon compounds, cinnamaldehyde and epicatechin, may be effective in combating Alzheimer’s. According to a studies done by Roshni George and Donald Graves in 2013 from UC Santa Barbara, cinnamon acted to prevent the development of the filamentous tangles, which are found in the brain cells that characterize Alzheimer’s.


24. PMS


With its high manganese levels cinnamon may mitigate PMS symptoms.  The University of Maryland web site stated that women who ate 5.6 mg of manganese daily showed fewer mood swings and cramps compared to the ones who ate only 1 mg.  From this is suggested that a manganese rich diet can help reduce effects of PMS.

Another clinical study noticed that 46 patients with PMS had lowered amounts of calcium, chromium, copper, and manganese in their blood.

You should not take more than 11 mg of Manganese per day, which is about 12 cinnamon sticks according NYU. FDA guidelines recommend a daily having 2mg or about 2 Cinnamon sticks.


Cinnamon as a Supplement? Pt. 8

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 20. Nutrients


One teaspoon of Cinnamon Powder provides 0.33mg (16% DV) Manganese, 0.76 mg (4% DV) Iron, 24.56 mg (2% DV) Calcium. Manganese functions as an enzyme activator, building good structure and bone metabolism. WebMD says that manganese is useful for osteoporosis, some types of anemia, and symptoms of premenstrual syndrome (PMS).


21. Insect Repellent


The anti microbial qualities of cinnamon leaf oil has been successfully used for head lice, black ant control, bed bugs, dust mites, and roaches.

It also known as repellent for mosquitoes.  A WebMD article refers to Taiwanese study that discovered that it not only kills mosquito larvae but also acts as a bug repellant. This paper suggests that real cinnamon oil as opposed to cinnamon extract has the best range of antimicrobial activity.


22. Cold, Sore Throat, and Cough


At the first sign of sniffles or an itchy throat drink some cinnamon tea or cinnamon stick tea. It is claimed to halt  an impending illness out of hand. This is attributed to the antibacterial properties and warming properties of cinnamon and its effect toward increased blood flow.  On its effect is improves your blood oxygen levels to fight illness. Chinese traditional medicine often recommends cinnamon for phlegm coughs.

cinnamon oil

Cinnamon as a Supplement? Pt. 7

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 15. Lowering LDL cholesterol and triglycerides


In a Mayo clinic article we find that the only known way cinnamon lowers cholesterol is by adjusting how the body processes sugar and fat. They sat that there is no direct effect on cholesterol. However that happens the end game is the point.  

In an another study found cinnamon reduced triglyceride (23-30%), LDL cholesterol (7-27%), and total cholesterol (12-26%).  On review in 2011 a study found the consumption of cinnamon is associated with a significant decrease in levels of total cholesterol, LDL-C, and triglyceride levels, while there was an increase in HDL-C (the good cholesterol) levels. They qualified it by saying that applying it to patient care is difficult.  

Sometimes doctors, as with most all of us, are so attached to their worldview that they can not see what is is. I think it might be worth a try as an add on.  In moderation what can it hurt.


16. E-coli Fighter/Salmonella

e coli

Cinnamon can be one of the most effective e-coli fighters remembering  its antimicrobial properties. You might try mixing cinnamon oil with hydrogen peroxide and spraying down your cutting board and kitchen sink. Do not forget your refrigerator.  This way of sanitizing is safe and natural.

A study found that a concentration of 2 microl/ml from cinnamon worked sufficiently to inactivate salmonella enteritidis, e-coli, and l-innocua in apple and pear juices and 8 and 10 microl/ml from cinnamon for melon juice and tryptone soy broth.


19. Tooth Decay and Gum Disease

Once more the antibacterial effects of cinnamon play a role in banishing harmful bacteria, and that without damaging your teeth or gums. It is why often cinnamon oil is added to chewing gums, mouthwashes, toothpaste and breath mints.


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