Recipes with Ginger (Fresh): Ginger Peach Smoothie
A steaming hot mug of ginger tea on a damp day warms up your bones and burns away thick, heavy congestion. When the weather is soggy, you feel tired and groggy. You naturally crave sunlight and heat. Pungent and light, fresh ginger clears away the damp clouds of winter, invigorating your whole system as it lifts your mood and boosts enthusiasm. The perkiness of ginger bids you to say goodbye to dullness and depression.
Ginger, Sore Throats & Congestion
Ginger's heat & pungency is key to warming you up and liquefying mucus. On damp, rainy days you may feel heavy and sluggish. Even your skin feels clammy. The back of your throat may be swollen and irritated due to a thick coating of "reactive" mucus - mucus filled with dead bacteria. By stimulating your heart to beat faster and opening up blood vessels, ginger flushes damp, cold areas with warm, enlivening blood. It is particularly beneficial for clearing congestion in the upper respiratory tract, including the throat, nose and sinuses.
A simple cup of fresh ginger tea, made by boiling an inch of the root in two cups of water, does the trick. As it warms the head and your whole body, it brings a sense of lightness back to a heavy, congested head. A client explained how fresh ginger helped them relieve this stuffed up feeling, "My nasal passages opened up and my congestion cleared." Another shared, "Breathing was much easier. My mind had more clarity. My chest felt far less dense, like I had been doing breathing exercises to open up my thoracic cavity." You can also place grated ginger in a pot of boiling water and inhale the steam to clear a stuffy nose.
Try this syrup for a sore throat: Mix together 1/2" grated fresh ginger root, 1/4 tsp dried turmeric, and 1/4 tsp black pepper with 1 tsp raw honey. Slowly lick over 15 minutes and repeat up to three times a day to clear throat congestion. Ginger is most effective in late winter. Its light, clear, and warm qualities combat a slushy and soggy time of year.
Recipes with Ginger (Fresh): Cilantro Jade Soup with Crunchy Cucumber & Lime
The mobile, revitalizing quality of fresh ginger allows it to support peripheral circulation, dispelling feelings of cold from extremities. Although many spices share ginger's warmth, they also make you sweat which leaves you vulnerable to catching a chill as the effects wear off. Ginger operates internally only (in antara marga), kindling heat & agni without making you sweat.
A client notes, "My hands and feet tend to be cool. With ginger, I did not sweat but felt warmer to my core." Another reports, "After eating fresh ginger, the center of my chest felt hot, as if I had a heating pad inside the back of my sternum."
On cold days, a hot ginger and baking soda bath is one of the best ways to warm your entire body, stimulate circulation, and rev up metabolism. To enjoy these benefits, simply mix 1/2c of ginger and 1/2c of baking soda into a hot bath.
Ginger & Digestion
Fresh ginger is considered to be one of the best digestives, and for this reason is among the most revered roots in Ayurveda. It is suitable for all body types (tridoshic) to stimulate digestive strength (agni). A few pieces of tummy warming ginger, salt, & lime appetizer before a meal stimulates appetite, and gets digestive juices flowing. "It was like my digestive system was getting a kickstart," a client noted.
Purifying & Cleansing
Fresh ginger purifies the mouth, awakens the taste buds, and stimulates salivary secretions. You might just notice fresher breath and a sharper palate after having some. A client explained the effect it had in their mouth, "When I chewed on the fresh ginger, it gave my mouth a tingling, cleansing and hot sensation, like mouthwash almost. The peppery taste made me feel refreshed."
When food becomes stagnant in the gut, it starts to ferment and rot, leading to indigestion, gas, bloating, and the formation of digestive toxins (ama). Light, easy, and warming, fresh ginger stimulates digestion and metabolism, acting as a cleansing aid for detoxification. The volatile oils in ginger increase motility in the gastrointestinal tract, helping clear food stagnation and relieve constipation. One client notes, "My peristalsis increased with the ginger. My elimination sped up and the end result was I felt lighter."
Eating a slice of ginger can help relieve nausea in the stomach or burping due to stagnant food or excess mucus. One client who was feeling nauseous tried this trick with great results. "My gut was feeling heavy and a little nauseated, so I tried this appetizer," they shared. "It was like magic! Within 5-10 minutes, I felt much lighter and was able to eat with the family again."
Recipes with Ginger (Fresh): Homemade Fire Cider
Ginger & Inflammation
One of the amazing qualities of fresh ginger is that it stimulates digestion without aggravating acidity. Despite the heat of this root, fresh ginger is actually anti-inflammatory. Only fresh ginger, due to the volatile oils, has this special anti-inflammatory quality. Dry ginger does not, due to evaporation of essential oils.
Even though fresh ginger tastes initially pungent on your tongue, it has a sweet post digestive effect (vipaka). In Ayurveda, the post digestive effect means the effect a substance has throughout your body, after you have digested it. The sweet post digestive effect of ginger moistens and nourishes tissues, and is anti-inflammatory.
Dry ginger is much hotter than fresh ginger, and can be aggravating to the digestive tract. It does not have the same soothing or nutritive effect of fresh ginger, but increases heat and dryness in the body. A fiery spice, those who are overheated or feel agitated by heat should steer clear of dry ginger and favor fresh. Those who need the extra heat, however, can benefit from dry ginger. It depends on the individual.
Minced, chopped, grated or sliced, fresh ginger can be used in a variety of ways. It is well known for its pain relieving qualities, and its ability to settle an upset or nauseous stomach. It also acts as an antispasmodic, helping reduce tension, spasms, and cramping. A cup of the hot tea can relieve menstrual cramps due to its antispasmodic properties, and its sweet post digestive effect has a nourishing effect on the reproductive tissues. 1 tsp of fresh ginger mixed into 1 tbsp of castor oil is a home remedy for rheumatoid arthritis. 1 tsp of fresh ginger mixed with 1 tsp of ghee is reputed to help osteoarthritis.
Fresh ginger is also a powerful antibacterial agent, and has been proven to kill the harmful bacteria salmonella under certain conditions. Ginger, therefore, can also be beneficial as a food preservative. Its warming effects can help encourage a low grade fever - improving immunity.
For some Pitta individuals the heat of ginger is too much. One client writes, "After a while the warmth in my stomach went to a sour feeling. My stomach kind of churned." Another notes, "My eyes felt dry, my face flushed, and the whites of my eyes became bloodshot." Fresh ginger is used widely in Asia to prevent nausea in pregnant women, although it is contraindicated for pregnancy in the USA.
Buying & Preparation
If you buy organic ginger, you won't have to peel the skin. For non-organic ginger, scrape the skin off with the edge of a knife or a spoon instead of using a peeler or a knife. This method is faster and creates less waste.
Recipes with Ginger (Fresh): Ginger, Salt & Lime Appetizer
Cooking Ginger (Fresh)
Ginger appears in recipes from all over the world, in many unique and versatile ways. In the West, ginger is often made into candy, crystallized, or added to desserts like gingerbread. Ginger is considered to be one of the "sweet spices" along with cardamom, cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg, and anise. However, its use appears frequently in savory dishes as well. In Asian cuisine, ginger, garlic, and onion form tri-root, a common spice combination. Ginger is ground with garlic into a paste and then sauted in Bengal. The Burmese shred ginger and preserve it in oil, mixing it with a variety of nuts and seeds. Ginger beer, a carbonated fermented soda, is popular in Jamaica. The people of the Ivory Coast mix ginger with orange, lemon, and pineapple to make a juice. In Japanese cuisine, ginger is pickled with red shisho leaves. Koreas kimchi is studded with ginger, added before the fermentation process.
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Is Ginger (Fresh) Good for My Ayurvedic Diet?
Find out by taking this free, easy quiz.
You'll learn your body type, and whether Ginger (Fresh) is a good fit for your body type. Time to complete: approximately 1 minute.
AYURVEDA'S GUIDE TO VITALITY & WHOLESOME NOURISHMENT
Your Ayurvedic diet is tailored to your individual body and your specific imbalances.
With an Ayurvedic diet you feel joy and satisfaction because what you are eating truly nourishes and balances you.
Disease results from diets and lifestyles that are incompatible with your nature.
By eating a personalized diet matched to your body, you experience optimal health.
See How it Works.
Functional Ayurveda helps you assess imbalances through 20 main biocharacteristics
Aggravating these characteristics weakens your body and causes imbalance.
By knowing which characteristics are habitually imbalanced in your body, you will be able to identify and correct imbalances before you get sick.
Every characteristic has an opposite which balances it (i.e. hot balances cold).
You restore balance by favoring diet and lifestyle choices that increase the opposite characteristic.
Taste is used to sense the most basic properties and effects of food.
Each taste has a specific medicinal effect on your body.
Cravings for food with certain tastes indicate your body is craving specific medicinal results from food.
Taste is experienced on the tongue and represents your body's reaction to foods.
Sweet taste causes physical satisfaction and attraction whereas bitter taste causes discomfort and aversion.
Kapha should use less sweet taste while Vata and Pitta would benefit from using more sweet taste.
One of the first signs of illness is that your taste and appetite for food changes.
The six tastes are sweet, sour, salty, pungent, bitter, and astringent.
Do you crave foods with any of the tastes below?
According to the biocharacteristic theory of medicine,
people tend to get sick, over and over again, due to habitual causes and imbalances that are unique to the person.
Your body type summarizes this tendency, showing you the 'type' of conditions and imbalances that frequently challenge your health & wellness.
Using body type, you can also identify remedies likely to improve your strength and resiliency.
Your body type identifies physical and mental characteristics as well as your personal strengths and weaknesses.
The calculation of your body type is based on your medical history.
The 3 functional body types
are Catabolic (Vata), Metabolic (Pitta), and Anabolic (Kapha).
Catabolic individuals tend to break down body mass into energy. They are easily stimulated, hyperactive, underweight and dry.
Metabolic individuals tend to burn or use energy. They tend to be rosy-cheeked, easily irritated, focused, driven, and easily inflamed.
Anabolic individuals tend to store energy as body mass. If they store too much energy, they could gain weight easily and have congestion. Anabolic people tend to be stable and grounded.
Geriatric conditions typically involve low agni / metabolism, poor circulation, weakness & debility, muscle weakening, poor digestion, a drop in sex hormones, and connective tissue degradation in bones & skin.
Medicinal Benefits, Uses & Herbal Actions of Ginger (Fresh)
Experiences are Personal
Experiences vary according to the person and constitution. Individual results may vary.
The list of herbal-actions below has not be approved by the FDA and should not be used to treat a medical condition.
A sialogogue increases saliva. Sour foods are often great sialogogues, and increase output of all exocrine glands. Salty taste is very moistening as well. Bitter, pungent and sweettastes also increase salivary output but to a
lesser degree. Astringents.
Fibrosis of an organ is often a progressive leading to organ failure (i.e lungs, liver, kidney). While vulneraries usually help restore collagen, antifibrotic herbs often clear collagen. Aka fibrinolytic.
An herb that inhibits clotting, dissolves clots, thins the blood, or destroys platelets, therefore reducing the tendency of blood to form clots. They are useful in cardiovascular disease, clots, and stroke. Aka anticoagulant.
Ginger (Fresh) may be beneficial for these symptoms. The suitability of any food for a condition is highly dependent on the individual.
Please see your doctor before using this food to treat a medical condition.
Eating Ayurvedically makes you feel nourished and energized. Food digests with ease when
right for your body type (dosha). Healthy digestion is seen as the cornerstone of well-being in
Ayurveda. Healthy digestion generally prevents illness. If you do get sick, a strong digestive fire
reduces the severity of illness and increases your resilience. It also improves your mood. Once
you begin eating Ayurvedically, you will feel refreshed, vital and strong.
John Immel, the founder of Joyful Belly, teaches people how to have a
healthy diet and lifestyle with Ayurveda biocharacteristics.
His approach to Ayurveda is clinical, yet exudes an ease which many find enjoyable and insightful.
John also directs Joyful Belly's School of Ayurveda,
offering professional clinical training in Ayurveda for over 15 years.
John's interest in Ayurveda and specialization in digestive tract pathology was inspired by a complex digestive disorder acquired from years of international travel,
as well as public service work in South Asia.
John's commitment to the detailed study of digestive disorders reflects his zeal to get down to the roots of the problem.
His hope and belief in the capacity of each & every client to improve their quality of life is nothing short of a personal passion.
John's creativity in the kitchen and delight in cooking for others comes from his family oriented upbringing.
In addition to his certification in Ayurveda, John holds a bachelor's degree in mathematics from Harvard University.
John enjoys sharing Ayurveda within the context of his Catholic roots,
and finds Ayurveda gives him an opportunity to participate in the healing mission of the Church.
Jesus expressed God's love by feeding and healing the sick.
That kindness is the fundamental ministry of Ayurveda as well.
Outside of work, John enjoys spending time with his wife and 6 kids, and pursuing his love of theology, philosophy, and language.
Ginger and castor oil is the traditional recipe. Castor oil is a purgative and very cleansing. Ghee is soothing and building. There is a large difference between the two. Castor oil has a quite strong effect and ghee is mild.