A Healthy Drink With a Powerful Punch
Ginger has a very strong and specific taste doesn’t it?
I liken it to marmite, you either love it or hate it.
And if you dislike ginger, then this post might persuade you to try it again when you find out the many benefits of ginger water and what it can do for you health-wise.
So this post is in two parts.
The first part will talk about the many health benefits of ginger water and why you should consider drinking it to help ease various symptoms such as nausea, for example.
In the second part, I lay out some ginger water recipe ideas so you can create some wonderful ginger water cocktails. Be as creative as you like by mixing and matching different ingredients to suit your own taste-buds so you’ll look forward to your daily ginger water beverage.
So let’s get started with understanding what exactly ginger is.
What Exactly Is Ginger?
Ginger is a spice which is widely used in foods, especially in Asian and Indian cooking, such as curries for example. It has also been used as a folk medicine for thousands of years.
Ginger is a root plant, originally derived from China, and is a herbaceous perennial which means that its upper layers die each year, but it’s roots stay alive and strong.
So ginger is a little understated root plant that is mainly used in spicing up oriental and Indian cuisine – so let’s now look into it for its healthy, medicinal purposes.
What Is Gingers’ Main Healing Ingredient?
As mentioned above, ginger is a perennial flowering plant that originates from China. It belongs to the ‘ginger family’ called Zingiberaceae which has more than 1,300 species of aromatic herbs [Source].
The root of the flowering plant (the one which dies and then re-grows every year) is called rhizone and is the source of the actual ginger spice.
The main ingredient of the rhizone route is gingerol which is a natural oil and its this that gives ginger it’s unique fragrance and flavour. Also, gingerol is a bioactive compound which is responsible various forms of alternative medicine.
How Can Ginger Be Used?
Ginger is produced and sold in many different forms, such as:
- Fresh – you buy the actual root
- Powdered – which comes in those herbs & spice containers
- Oil – used for aromatherapy applications
- Juice – pre-made cleansing drinks
So as you can see, it can be used in:
- Aromatherapy & massages
- Cleansing drinks
Cooking: The ginger spice is closely related to that of turmeric and is very common in cooking Asian and Indian-inspired recipes.
Aromatherapy: Ginger oil can be used as a burning oil for its aroma and also as a massage oil. These two uses are known to help relieve stress and tiredness.
Cleansing Drinks: You can buy pre-made ‘over-the-counter’ cleansing juices which are used as part of a detox diet plan or as a daily health drink (see benefits below).
All of the above make good use of the natural gingerol oil, making it very versatile.
9 Amazing Benefits of Ginger Water
So now we know more about the spice ginger and that it’s main ‘healthy’ ingredient is the bioactive gingerol oil, let’s see how it can help us medicinally.
#2 Eliminates nausea
#3 Fights the Common Cold
#4 Helps inflammation
#5 Acts as an antioxidant
#6 Helps eliminate toxins (which is why it’s a popular detox drink)
#7 May help boost metabolism
#8 Soothes aches
#9 Eases stomach cramps and pains.
Side Effects of Ginger Water
I suppose with most things, too much of one thing can cause side-effects in some people and ginger is no exception.
I think it just comes down to the old saying ‘everything in moderation’. So if you want to reap the benefits of ginger water, then just have 1-2 cups a day to keep on the safe side.
Having said that, here are some known, common side effects of too much ginger:
- Upset stomach
- Rash (you may be allergic to ginger)
So if you experience any of the above, then immediately cut out drinking ginger water for a few days and see if the symptoms go away. If they do, then you know that too much ginger water was the culprit.
Pregnant? If you’re pregnant, please get advice from your doctor before taking ginger on a daily basis. This should be the case for any supplements or herbs. Don’t take any risks.
17 Ginger Water Recipe Ideas
Since this post is specifically about ginger water benefits and recipes (and not cooking with ginger for example), I’ve listed below ?? ginger water combinations with different ingredients.
There are many ways in which you can incorporate the spice ginger into your water.
The Traditional Way To Make Ginger Water
But first, let’s start off with the basic, traditional way ginger has been used to make the ‘original’ ginger water recipe.
Doctors recommend drinking a maximum of 3–4 grams of ginger extract per day.
Typically, 1 gram of ginger would be:
- 1/2 teaspoon powdered ginger
- 1/2 – 1 teaspoon of grated raw ginger
As you might have guessed, fresh grated ginger is best to use for ginger water as you’ll reap the full benefits of all the nutrients.
Fresh ginger is not very expensive and can easily be found in the fresh produce section of most grocery stores.
This is what fresh ginger and powdered ginger look like in the grocery store:
Here’s The Original Ginger Water Recipe:
- Only wash the small part of the ginger which you’ll be grating
- Using a grater/zester, grate 1/2 teaspoon
- In a pan, boil four cups of water
- When water is boiling, add the ginger and stir
- Immediately remove the pan of boiling ginger water from the stove
- Put the pan to one side for ten minutes allowing the ginger to steep and the water to cool
- Get a small sieve and pour the water into a cup or mug.
- You can drink the ginger water warm or cold
Ginger Water Recipe Combinations
Let’s first look at some ingredients that go with ginger:
Spices / Herbs / Other
Basically, there’s no right or wrong when it comes to adding in other ingredients.
Just play around with them, for example:
- Put cinnamon in the water with the ginger and then sieve it out
- Do the same with the mint leaves
- Put a 1/2 teaspoon of honey in your cup of ginger water just before you drink it
- Put the fruit in the boiling water and take out just before drinking
- Put the fruit in the water and leave them in there is infuse, just like fruit infused water
So as you can see, there could easily be at least 17 different combinations just from the above ingredients – you can add other herbs, spices and fruit suited to your own personal taste!