Ginger is in all likelihood the oldest spice. It has been used in both cooking and medicinal preparations for millennia. Ginger could help cleanse the colon, reduce cramps, and improve circulation. It is a good antioxidant, as well as being antimicrobial. In powdered form, ginger could relieve inflammation. And this means that , as researchers in New Zealand have just proven, it can be used as an effective remedy for arthritic pain — even when applied topically as a compress.
This health news doesn’t really come as a surprise. After all, researchers have determined that unique nutrients in ginger are able to inhibit the production of two substances: prostaglandins and leukotrienes. Both prostaglandins and leukotrienes play an important role in pain and inflammation.
In the New Zealand study, researchers studied the effects of a ginger compress on 10 adults. Each participant had suffered osteoarthritis for at least a year. The participants kept daily diaries and made drawings to explain symptoms. Follow-up interviews and telephone conversations were conducted throughout the trial as well.
The researchers found that seven themes were identified in the data they collected. Study participants reported that ginger helped to induce: meditative-like stillness and relaxation of thoughts; constant, penetrating warmth throughout the body; a positive change in outlook; increased energy and interest in the world; a deeply relaxed state that progressed to a gradual shift in pain and increased interest in others; increased suppleness within the body; and more comfortable, flexible joint mobility. That’s quite a list of health benefits — and all without the addition of unwanted prescription side effects!
The research team concluded that nurses should consider ginger compress therapy as part of a holistic treatment for people with osteoarthritis symptoms.
Check online for tips on how to make an effective ginger compress at home in your own kitchen.