It’s aromatic, it’s spicy, and it’s amazing in your food: today we’ll have a crash course about ginger.
What Is It?
Ginger is a root, and it can be consumed as a spice, as medicine or as a delicacy. It originates from southern China, and it arrived in Europe through India.The flesh of the ginger root is yellow, white or red, depending on the type. It is covered in a skin that is brown-like (or beige), and the flesh has a very firm and striated texture.
Ginger has a history of helping people who have trouble with their stomach. Apart from relieving gastrointestinal symptoms, ginger also contains a substance that soothes and relaxes the intestinal tract, and it also helps with eliminating intestinal gas. Apart from this, ginger can help those who have a low appetite, and it improves the body’s absorption of essential nutrients. Ginger is also a very good friend of those who often get nauseous, as the strong flavor helps alleviate symptoms.
And one extremely important benefit of ginger is the fact that it contains compounds that are called gingerols. These compounds are anti-inflammatory, and when ginger is introduced in a person’s diet regularly, it can help alleviate even strong symptoms of pain and reduced mobility for those suffering from rheumatoid arthritis and osteoarthritis. Thanks to these anti-inflammatory properties, ginger also helps those suffering from muscular pain.
How To Buy Ginger
If you have this option, try to buy fresh ginger (rather than the dried spice), because fresh ginger contains more active protease (an anti-inflammatory) than the dry variety. It can also be bought in other forms: crystallizes, pickles or candied.
When picking fresh ginger make sure it’s mold-free and smooth- and keep in mind you can usually find it in supermarkets, so it shouldn’t be too hard to get your hands on this amazing superfood. It can be kept in the fridge for about 3 weeks if you keep the peel on, and up to six months if you keep it in the freezer.
How To Use Ginger
It has 5 calories per tablespoon, and it can be used in a variety of dishes and drinks.
You can try cooking it with rice: cook some basmati rice, and when you take the lid off just grate a little bit of ginger for flavor (or add a pinch of ginger powder), and also add a bit of chopped garlic, fresh cilantro leaves and green chilies.
You can add a bit of a kick to your drinks by adding grated fresh ginger to your lemonades, green teas, or fruit juices. You can even throw a bit of chopped or grated fresh ginger in your smoothie to get the taste in your favorite treat.
And the best news of the day: ginger can be used in desserts. You can even add it to cookies and cakes. Try waking up the flavor by adding a bit of ginger to your vanilla panna cotta, but also use it to spice up a simple fruit salad.
Are you a fan of it? Tell us how you add it to your diet in a comment.