Feeling sore after your workout? Studies prove you can find relief from muscle aches and arthritis pain right in your spice rack. And in fact, even if you don’t exercise, this can still be good news for you…
Researchers at the University of Georgia examined the effects of a specific spice on muscle pain after exercise.1 They gave two grams of the raw and heat-treated forms of the spice to volunteers for 11 days. The participants did strength training exercises with heavy weights to provoke moderate pain.
“Muscle pain generally is one of the most common types of pain,” said study author Patrick O’Connor.2 “Anything that can truly relieve this type of pain will be greatly welcomed by the many people who are experiencing it.” The Journal of Pain published the findings.
And the spice that relieved pain was?
Known for its spicy heat, ginger contains the chemical gingerol. Gingerol has been found to reduce inflammation and block pain pathways.3 This is good news for people with arthritis.
Ginger extract gave patients suffering from knee arthritis significant pain relief, a recent study from Tel Aviv University found.4 The patients had better mobility and less pain and swelling.
Raw ginger has the highest amount of the active compound gingerol, so use the fresh root when you can. It will keep for several weeks in the refrigerator if unpeeled. Shave or mince it into a stir fry for some added heat or grate it into salad dressings for a spicy kick. Steep fresh slices in water for a few minutes to make ginger tea, which has the added benefit of eliminating nausea.
You can still benefit by using dried ginger. Sprinkle some ground ginger on fresh fruits and vegetables. Also, cool down by mixing a little into your lemonade. Just remember, a little bit goes a long way. And packs a lot of heat.
Ginger supplements are available online or at your local health food store.
It’s natural, safe, and effective. What used to be an expensive imported spice is now an inexpensive treatment for pain and inflammation.