How to use ginger (Adrak or Adarak), the healthiest food according to Ayurveda, in your winter diet


New Delhi: Winter has just taken a turn towards its harshest chill this year, especially in North India. The season is also the time and excuse to down cups and cups of tea… actually… ginger tea. Ginger (Adrak or Adarak in Hindi) is one of the most popular and nutritious ingredients used in Indian cooking. Consumed for thousands of years as a spice and also as folk medicine, ginger is considered as the healthiest food in Ayurveda. Ginger is loaded with nutrients and powerful antioxidants that can help protect against viruses that cause cough and colds which are common in winters. A lot of people use ginger tea or ginger water to boost weight loss as it stimulates digestion and suppresses appetite.

So, adding ginger to your winter diet or drinking ginger tea may be a great way to protect yourself from a cold or flu. Ginger can also help your body ward off germs. In fact, certain chemical compounds in fresh ginger can help prevent the growth of bacteria like E coli and shigella spread through contaminated water and food, or through contact with contaminated faeces. In a recent tweet, Union Health Minister Dr Harsh Vardhan suggests that once can stay safe from harsh winter by using fresh ginger, also called ‘Vishwabheshaja’ or ‘universal medicine’ in Ayurveda.

Here’s how ginger – the popular Indian spice – can promote your health and make a great addition to your diet this winter.

Health benefits of using ginger in your diet

Ginger is high in gingerol, a potent substance having anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties that have immense benefits for your body and mind. Some of the health benefits of ginger are listed below:

  1. It can treat several forms of nausea, specifically morning sickness with evidence suggesting that it may be as effective as a prescription drug.
  2. It reduces inflammation and has been used to treat inflammatory conditions, including asthma, autoimmune diseases, etc. The popular spice appears to be effective at reducing symptoms of osteoarthritis.
  3. Ginger is an excellent home remedy for a cold or flu, or cough.
  4. The spice may speed up emptying of the stomach, which can help treat chronic indigestion.
  5. It may lower LDL cholesterol and blood triglyceride levels, reducing the risk of heart disease.
  6. It may help prevent cancer due to the presence of 6-gingerol, which may have anti-cancer effects.
  7. It may help lower blood sugar levels by helping the body use insulin better.
  8. The spice is generally healthy for most people trying to use it as an ingredient for weight loss.

How to use ginger in your recipes

The popular spice can be used fresh, dried, powdered, or as an oil or juice. Here are some smart ways to add this healing spice to your diet:

  • Try adding fresh or dried ginger (saunth) to a stir-fry or fish recipe.
  • You can also spice up your soups, stews, curries by adding fresh or dried ginger.
  • Add fresh ginger to your healthy and delicious breakfast smoothies.
  • Make ginger tea that is soothing as well as comforting by boiling your fresh ginger root slices in water.

Ginger is among the healthiest spices you can eat to lose weight, boost health and keep infections at bay.

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