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Ginger: Cold, Flu and Cancer

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Posted on 12-10-2017

Ginger: Cold, Flu and Cancer

Ginger is a perennial plant from the family Zingiberaceae, has green leafy stems and yellowish green flowers that originates from the tropical rain forest in southern Asia and India. Ginger rhizome (roots)  is widely used as a kitchen spice. Ginger has been described by many as one of the most delicious and healthiest spice in the world because it is loaded with numerous health benefits such as treating nausea and vomiting, reducing exercise induced soreness and muscle pains, aids digestion, helps with flu and common cold conditions. Ginger has been proven to have anti-inflammatory, antioxidant and antitumor effects hence its use in lowering blood sugar level, cholesterol and treatment of infections particularly viral infections, osteoarthritis, reduce menstrual pain AND in the treatment of various forms of cancer[1].

Numerous studies have been done and are still ongoing to confirm the effectiveness of ginger in both preventing and fighting against various types of cancer such as breast, colorectal, liver, prostate, lung, pancreatic, melanoma and ovarian cancers. According to a study done by the state university of Georgia, Ginger extract was used on mice with prostate cancer and a 55 percent reduction in tumor size was noted showing the anticancer properties of ginger[3].

The effectiveness of ginger is owed to the variety of active components which it contains particularly gingerols and shogaols. Studies done on these active ingredients demonstrated that 6, 8 and 10-gingerols  with 6–shogaol showed efficacy in anti-inflammatory, antibacterial, antipyretic, antilipidemic, antiangiogenic, and antimutagenic effect. 6-gingero inhibits Leukotriene A4 hydroxylase enzyme(LTA4H) and hence suppress cancer cell growth in colorectal cancer. Sang et al also demonstrated the effectiveness of 6-,8- and 10 shogaols in antiproliferation of cancer cells[2].

A new study done identified effective anti-cancer stem cell activity in 6- shogaol, furthermore the study showed that this cancer destroying ability of this active component occurred at levels not toxic to normal cells of the body, this Is a big relief to both doctors and patients since most conventional treatments do not exhibit such selective cytotoxicity. The effect of 6-shaogoal on breast cancer cells as identified by researchers showed that it reduces the expression of stem cell surface markers CD44/CD24 in breast cancer, increases cell apoptosis and has cytotoxic properties on breast cancer cells (both monolayer and spheroid cells).

The effectiveness of ginger against cancer cells is clear. Ginger can be eaten fresh, dried, powdered, in various teas, juice or in recipes. It is cheap and widely available. My recommendation is to add a slice of ginger to your daily vegetable juice for a daily tonic and for preventive care. Ginger, one of nature's  natural cure all,  now known to target cancer and without the side effects caused by cytotoxic drugs.



Sang S, Hong J, Wu H, Liu J, Yang CS, Pan MH, Badmaev V, Ho CT. (2009)

Increased growth inhibitory effects on human cancer cells and anti-inflammatory potency of shogaols from Zingiber officinale relative to gingerols. J Agric Food Chem 57:10645–10650


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