Turmeric and ginger have been used for centuries for their health benefits and to spice up meals. Both ginger and turmeric have powerful anti-inflammatory properties that help relieve pain. The medicinal properties of turmeric and ginger can boost your health and help treat a wide range of health issues. For example, by combining these delicious herbs, you can make a refreshing turmeric ginger tea to help to soothe gastrointestinal problems, reduce inflammation in joints, keep your heart healthy, and even help reduce symptoms of depression. It is considered to be one of the most powerful herbs for fighting and potentially reversing diseases. It is also a delicious spice to add depth of flavour and colour to any meal. That is why turmeric is a staple ingredient for many Indian and Caribbean dishes and is used as a natural colouring agent for many other food and beauty products. The root are harvested, and are used fresh or dried and then ground into a fine yellow powder. The main compound of turmeric is curcumin which gives the spice its distinct colour and contains most of the health-boosting properties. However, it also contains smaller amounts of zingiberene, which is the main compound of ginger. Many studies into the therapeutic effects of curcumin have found that it is a powerful anti-inflammatory agent with amazing health benefits.
The book Herbal Medicine reports that turmeric contains anti-inflammatory and antimicrobial properties and can help to relieve gas and boost liver health. Turmeric have also being used in centuries to treat many diseases and infections such as; joint inflammation, rheumatoid arthritis, chronic digestive problems, abdominal pain, boosts brain power, improves blood circulation, reduces cholesterol, help prevent cancer and aids in diabetes control, allergies and other chronic illnesses. Many people believe that consuming turmeric and ginger in their raw form retains the most health benefits of these herbs. However studies have shown that when curcumin is heated for a short period of time, certain compounds that are not readily available in its fresh form are released. As with all foods, when turmeric and piperine are heated, changes occur in their nutritional value. One study showed that when turmeric is heated between 15 and 30 minutes, about 85% of curcumin is lost in the cooking process and about 50% of piperine will be also lost when cooked together with curry powder. However, this doesn’t mean that there is a loss in the amount of medicinal and antioxidant properties in these two ingredients. Another study showed that boiling or roasting turmeric actually increases the antioxidant levels by over 50%. So although curcumin is broken down during cooking and heating, the antioxidant properties become more intense.
When curcumin is heated, certain compounds that are not readily available in its fresh form are released. To fully benefit from the antioxidant and anticancer benefits of turmeric, it is important that you use turmeric in cooking as this will increase the amount of antioxidants that are available and can be absorbed into the body. Turmeric and ginger are natural healing ingredients and are generally safe for normal consumption. However, the medicinal compounds can interfere with other medications therefore you should seek medical advice before taking turmeric and ginger for medical use if you are taking certain medications or have some underlying health issue. You should avoid turmeric and ginger if:
You are taking medications to thin the blood or prevent blood clots.
You take medication for diabetes. But if you control diabetes through diet only, then turmeric and ginger may help to control blood glucose levels.
You take medication for high blood pressure.
You have a tendency to suffer from gallstones and kidney stones.
Also, consuming these herbs in medicinal amounts is likely unsafe in pregnant and breastfeeding women.
To make turmeric and ginger drink, you will need;
One teaspoon fresh grated turmeric and ginger root or 1/3 teaspoon of dried turmeric and ginger.
¼ teaspoon of black pepper (to aids turmeric absorption) or coconut oil.
Almond Milk (Optional).
Raw honey and a slice of lemon to taste.
How to prepare turmeric and ginger drink;
There are two ways in which you can make turmeric and ginger tea;
By adding your grated turmeric, ginger, black pepper or coconut oil and almond milk into a boiling water. Reduce the heat and allow the mixture to boil for 10 minutes. Strain the drink into a glass allow it to cool small and add your honey and lemon. Make sure to drink while the tea is still warm. Alternatively, you can boil water and add your grated turmeric, ginger. Cover it and allow it to stay overnight and strain out the root and reserve the liquid make sure you reheat the mixture when you are ready for tea.
Adding turmeric and ginger to your warm water is inexpensive, mild in taste and benefits every system in your body. Why not give it a try today.
By Mercy Kukah
Source: Mindbodygreen.com. Healthy and Natural world.