Gingering up the digestive tract with an old spice

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Gingering up the digestive tract with an old spice

Phil Rasmussen

More than 400 scientific papers a year are published on ginger’s potential medicinal applications
More than 400 scientific papers a year are published on ginger’s potential medicinal applications [Image: aaboikis on]

Pharmacist and medical herbalist Phil Rasmussen reviews the literature on one of the world’s oldest known spices, ginger

The roots and rhizomes of ginger (Zingiber officinale Roscoe) have been used medicinally for thousands of years. Originating from southern China an
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  1. Wu KL, Rayner CK, Chuah SK, et al. Effects of ginger on gastric emptying and motility in healthy humans. Eur J Gastroenterol Hepatol 2008;20(5):436–40.
  1. Zhang MM, Wang D, Lu F, et al. Identification of the active substances and mechanisms of ginger for the treatment of colon cancer based on network pharmacology and molecular docking. BioData Min 2021;14(1):1.
  1. Van Tilburg MA, Palsson OS, Ringel Y, et al. Is ginger effective for the treatment of irritable bowel syndrome? A double blind randomized controlled pilot trial. Complement Ther Med. 2014;22(1):17–20.
  1. Ma ZJ, Wang HJ, Ma XJ, et al. Modulation of gut microbiota and intestinal barrier function during alleviation of antibiotic-associated diarrhea with Rhizoma Zingiber officinale (Ginger) extract. Food Funct 2020;11(12):10839–51.
  1. El-Abhar HS, Hammad LN, Gawad HS. Modulating effect of ginger extract on rats with ulcerative colitis. J Ethnopharmacol 2008;118(3):367–72.
  1. Nikkhah-Bodaghi M, Maleki I, Agah S, et al. Zingiber officinale and oxidative stress in patients with ulcerative colitis: A randomized, placebo-controlled, clinical trial. Complement Ther Med 2019;43:1–6.
  1. Shayesteh F, Haidari F, Shayesteh AA, et al. Ginger in patients with active ulcerative colitis: a study protocol for a randomized controlled trial. Trials 2020;21(1):278.
  1. Salah Khalil M. The postulated mechanism of the protective effect of ginger on the aspirin induced gastric ulcer: Histological and immunohistochemical studies. Histol Histopathol 2015;30(7):855–64.
  1. Khushtar M, Kumar V, Javed K, et al. Protective effect of ginger oil on aspirin and pylorus ligation-induced gastric ulcer model in rats. Indian J Pharm Sci 2009;71(5):554–58.
  1. Wang Z, Hasegawa J, Wang X, et al. Protective effects of ginger against aspirin-induced gastric ulcers in rats. Yonago Acta Med 2011;54(1):11–19.
  1. Zaghlool SS, Shehata BA, Abo-Seif AA, et al. Protective effects of ginger and marshmallow extracts on indomethacin-induced peptic ulcer in rats. J Nat Sci Biol Med 2015;6(2):421–28.
  1. Sistani Karampour N, Arzi A, Rezaie A, et al. Gastroprotective effect of Zingerone on ethanol-induced gastric ulcers in rats. Medicina (Kaunas) 2019;55(3):64.
  1. Yamahara J, Mochizuki M, Rong HQ, et al. The anti-ulcer effect in rats of ginger constituents. J Ethnopharmacol 1988;23(2-3):299–304.
  1. al-Yahya MA, Rafatullah S, Mossa JS, et al. Gastroprotective activity of ginger zingiber officinale rosc., in albino rats. Am J Chin Med 1989;17(1-2):51–56.
  1. Nanjundaiah SM, Annaiah HN, Dharmesh SM. Gastroprotective effect of ginger rhizome (Zingiber officinale) extract: Role of gallic acid and cinnamic acid in H(+), K(+)-ATPase/H. pylori inhibition and anti-oxidative mechanism. Evid Based Complement Alternat Med 2011;2011:249487.
  1. Shin JK, Park JH, Kim KS, et al. Antiulcer activity of steamed ginger extract against ethanol/HCl-induced gastric mucosal injury in rats. Molecules 2020;25(20):4663.
  1. Mahady GB, Pendland SL, Yun GS, et al. Ginger (Zingiber officinale Roscoe) and the gingerols inhibit the growth of Cag A+ strains of Helicobacter pylori. Anticancer Res 2003;23(5A):3699–702.
  1. Haniadka R, Saldanha E, Sunita V, et al. A review of the gastroprotective effects of ginger (Zingiber officinale Roscoe). Food Funct 2013;4(6):845–55.
  1. Ghayur MN, Gilani AH, Ahmed T, et al. Muscarinic, Ca(++) antagonist and specific butyrylcholinesterase inhibitory activity of dried ginger extract might explain its use in dementia. J Pharm Pharmacol 2008;60(10):1375–83.
  1. Riyazi A, Hensel A, Bauer K, et al. The effect of the volatile oil from ginger rhizomes (Zingiber officinale), its fractions and isolated compounds on the 5-HT3 receptor complex and the serotoninergic system of the rat ileum. Planta Med 2007;73(4):355–62.
  1. Grzanna R, Lindmark L, Frondoza CG. Ginger--an herbal medicinal product with broad anti-inflammatory actions. J Med Food 2005;8(2):125–32.
  1. Lantz RC, Chen GJ, Sarihan M, et al. The effect of extracts from ginger rhizome on inflammatory mediator production. Phytomedicine 2007;14(2-3):123–28.
  1. Tóth B, Lantos T, Hegyi P, et al. Ginger (Zingiber officinale): An alternative for the prevention of postoperative nausea and vomiting. A meta-analysis. Phytomedicine 2018;50:8–18.
  1. Matthews A, Haas DM, O'Mathúna DP, et al. Interventions for nausea and vomiting in early pregnancy. Cochrane Database Syst Rev 2015;2015(9):CD007575.
  1. Stanisiere J, Mousset PY, Lafay S. How safe is ginger rhizome for decreasing nausea and vomiting in women during early pregnancy? Foods 2018;7(4):50.
  1. Kiuchi F, Shibuya M, Sankawa U. Inhibitors of prostaglandin biosynthesis from ginger. Chem Pharm Bull (Tokyo) 1982;30(2):754–57.
  1. Saneei Totmaj A, Emamat H, Jarrahi F, et al. The effect of ginger (Zingiber officinale) on chemotherapy-induced nausea and vomiting in breast cancer patients: A systematic literature review of randomized controlled trials. Phytother Res 2019;33(8):1957–65.
  1. Borges DO, Freitas KABDS, Minicucci EM, et al. Benefits of ginger in the control of chemotherapy-induced nausea and vomiting. Rev Bras Enferm 2020;73(2):e20180903.
  1. Crichton M, Marshall S, Marx W, et al. Efficacy of ginger (Zingiber officinale) in ameliorating chemotherapy-induced nausea and vomiting and chemotherapy-related outcomes: A systematic review update and meta-analysis. J Acad Nutr Diet 2019;119(12):2055–68.
  1. Yamahara J, Mochizuki M, Rong HQ, et al. The anti-ulcer effect in rats of ginger constituents. J Ethnopharmacol 1988;23(2-3):299–304.
  1. Tramontin NDS, Luciano TF, Marques SO, et al. Ginger and avocado as nutraceuticals for obesity and its comorbidities. Phytother Res 2020;34(6):1282–90.
  1. Seo SH, Fang F, Kang I. Ginger (Zingiber officinale) attenuates obesity and adipose tissue remodeling in high-fat diet-fed C57BL/6 mice. Int J Environ Res Public Health 2021;18(2):631.
  1. Wang J, Wang P, Li D, et al. Beneficial effects of ginger on prevention of obesity through modulation of gut microbiota in mice. Eur J Nutr 2020;59(2):699–718.
  1. Wang J, Chen Y, Hu X, et al. Assessing the effects of ginger extract on polyphenol profiles and the subsequent impact on the fecal microbiota by simulating digestion and fermentation in vitro. Nutrients 2020;12(10):3194.
  1. Ebrahimzadeh Attari V, Ostadrahimi A, Asghari Jafarabadi M, et al. Changes of serum adipocytokines and body weight following Zingiber officinale supplementation in obese women: a RCT. Eur J Nutr 2016;55(6):2129–36.
  1. Park SH, Jung SJ, Choi EK, et al. The effects of steamed ginger ethanolic extract on weight and body fat loss: a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled clinical trial. Food Sci Biotechnol 2019;29(2):265–73.