It’s not just the taste that makes ginger and turmeric popular. These two ingredients are also well-known for their health benefits, including soothing stomach pain, reducing inflammation, and fighting cancer cells. But how do they work? And what other side effects should you know about? Read on to find out!
What Is Ginger Turmeric Tea?
Ginger turmeric tea is a popular drink consisting of ginger, turmeric, and hot water. However, there are different recipes for this type of drink, so it’s important to know which ingredients are in the one you’re drinking.
The most common recipe for ginger turmeric tea contains ginger, cinnamon, honey, and turmeric. Together, these ingredients have a number of health benefits.
What Is Turmeric?
Turmeric is a spice commonly used in Indian, Middle Eastern, and Southeast Asian cooking. It has an earthy flavour that can be described as slightly bitter with a peppery kick, meaning it works well with other spices like coriander, chilli pepper, cumin, and fenugreek.
Much of the health benefits of ginger turmeric tea are attributed to its main ingredient, turmeric. This golden spice contains a compound called curcumin, which offers the most benefits. It also has other nutrients, including iron, calcium, and copper.
Turmeric Nutrition Facts
According to the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) National Nutrient Database, one tablespoon of turmeric powder contains (6):
- 29 calories
- 0.91 grams of protein
- 0.31 g of fat
- 6.31 g of carbohydrates
- 2.1 g of fiber
- 0.3 g of sugar
- 26 percent of daily manganese needs
- 16 percent of daily iron
- 5 percent of daily potassium
- 3 percent of daily vitamin C
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Turmeric Health Benefits
Turmeric has a long history in both eastern and western medicine. Some of the most notable benefits include:
Turmeric reduces inflammation by blocking several different substances in the body that trigger swelling and pain, including prostaglandins and leukotrienes (1).
Improving Heart Health
Curcumin lowers total cholesterol as well as LDL (low-density lipoprotein) levels. Studies have shown turmeric can lower triglyceride levels as well (1).
Fighting Cancer Cells
Curcumin has been shown to fight the formation of cancer cells in the body (1).
Preventing Alzheimer’s Disease
Curcumin may be able to stop proteins from clumping together, which is a hallmark sign of Alzheimer’s disease (1).
Lowering Depression Risk
Manganese, copper, iron and vitamin B6 can affect brain function and mood, which may lower your risk of depression (1).
Due to its antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties, curcumin may help lower your risk of digestive system conditions, including: irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), hemorrhoids and acid reflux disease. It can also help fight off certain bacterial infections (9).
Boosting The Immune System
Curcumin, calcium, and iron all play a role in maintaining a healthy immune system (1).
Reducing Symptoms Of Arthritis
Studies have shown turmeric can decrease inflammation, joint pain, swelling of the joints, health problems with the bone structure, and morning stiffness (1).
Turmeric Side Effects
While turmeric has a number of benefits to offer, there are a few side effects to be aware of.
Gastrointestinal Side Effects
A number of studies have found that large doses of curcumin (greater than 2000 mg/day) can cause stomach and intestinal irritation (1).
Decreased Blood Clotting
Curcumin may slow blood clotting, meaning those who take blood thinners should be cautious when adding curcumin to their diet (5).
Decreased Iron Absorption
Curcumin may also decrease iron absorption. Those who are at risk of anemia should speak with their doctor before adding turmeric to their diet (3).
Interactions With Certain Medications
Curcumin supplements can interact with several different medications, including ones used for cancer treatments, heart conditions, and depression (4).
Turmeric should not be used in place of conventional medical treatments. If you are pregnant, breastfeeding, or have a serious health condition, speak to your doctor before adding turmeric to your diet.
What Is Ginger?
Ginger is a flowering plant that is most commonly used as a spice. The root of the plant called the fruit has many health benefits and can be eaten raw, dried, boiled, fried, cooked into food or even steeped for tea.
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Ginger Nutrition Facts
Ginger contains very few vitamins and minerals. Since it is typically eaten in small quantities, people generally don’t get many nutrients from it.
Unique compounds within ginger are thought to be the primary source of its health benefits. These include gingerol, shogaols, zingiberene, and zingerone.
The most well-researched compounds within ginger are gingerols. These substances can be highly antioxidant, reducing free radicals in the body that may cause cell damage and disease (2).
Similarly, shogaols are another type of antioxidant that may be found in ginger. These substances can help block metabolic pathways that lead to inflammation and tumor growth (2).
Zingiberene And Zingerone
Zingiberene and zingerone are natural plant compounds within ginger root which have been shown in some studies to have anti-inflammatory effects (2).
Ginger Health Benefits
Ginger has a long history in both eastern and western medicine. Some of the most notable benefits include:
Fighting Bacteria And Viruses
Ginger has been shown to have antimicrobial, antioxidant, anti-carcinogenic, anti-inflammatory properties. This makes it useful for fighting off infections from bacteria, viruses, and parasites (2).
Improving Digestion And Relieving Gas
Ginger can help your digestive system by relieving nausea and controlling digestion. Since it contains anti-flatulent compounds, it may also reduce the amount of gas in your body which can lead to abdominal pain and bloating (2).
Reducing Inflammation And Arthritis Symptoms
Ginger is thought to have similar anti-inflammatory properties as turmeric. It can aid in treating arthritis and other inflammatory conditions by reducing pain, swelling, and stiffness (2).
Lowering Cholesterol In The Blood
Studies suggest that ginger may help lower LDL (bad) and total cholesterol in your blood. The compounds found within this plant also help to promote the production of enzymes responsible for breaking down fats and lipids in the body (2).
Reducing Inflammation And Pain Associated With Menstrual Cramps
Due to its ability to reduce inflammation and regulate hormones, ginger may be useful in reducing the pain associated with menstrual cramps. It also helps to balance hormone levels, which can contribute to a reduction of premenstrual symptoms such as bloating, moodiness, and irritability (2).
Fighting Free Radicals And Cancer
As mentioned above, ginger is rich in antioxidants. It also contains compounds responsible for cell death in cancerous cells. While more research is needed, ginger supplementation is thought to have anti-tumor properties and may help fight against breast, ovarian, skin, lung, kidney, and pancreatic cancers (2).
Improving Fitness And Athletic Performance
Ginger has been shown to improve the circulation of blood throughout the body. It may also improve energy levels by increasing your body’s oxygen uptake, which can help keep you active, alert and focused during workouts as well as improve recovery times after exercise (7).
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Ginger Side Effects
While ginger is generally considered safe and well-tolerated, some people may experience negative side effects from eating too much of it. The most common complaints include: nausea, heartburn, and dizziness (2).
Ginger contains moderate doses of oxalates which may cause problems for people with conditions like kidney stones. The amount of oxalates found in ginger are also considered to be high enough to interfere with the absorption of calcium from the gut (8).
As always, it is best to speak with your doctor if you have specific concerns about eating ginger or turmeric since both may interact with certain medications.
Turmeric Ginger Tea Weight Loss – Does It Work?
Many people drink ginger turmeric tea for weight loss. They say it cleanses the body, boosts metabolism, and burns fat. However, there is no scientific research that proves these claims.
Each of the spices can aid in weight loss in some ways, but they work through different mechanisms. Ginger is a powerful anti-inflammatory that reduces aches and pains. It also improves the digestion of food so you absorb more nutrients (2). Meanwhile, turmeric helps to regulate blood sugar levels which can aid in weight loss among diabetics. It also encourages the body to break down fats (1).
That said, weight loss can only happen if the calories you consume through food and drinks are less than the number of calories your body uses up. If you’re not eating a healthy diet – including plenty of fruit and vegetables – then any tea, however magical it claims to be, will have little effect on your weight.
Along with ginger turmeric tea, you must also maintain a healthy diet and exercise regularly to see results.
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Ginger Turmeric Tea – How To Prepare It?
The most common recipe for a ginger turmeric drink calls for adding one teaspoon of grated root and another teaspoon of turmeric powder into a cup of boiling water, then steeping it for ten minutes.
This mixture is then strained and sweetened with a tablespoon of honey or sugar before drinking it. Some people choose to add cinnamon or lemon as well for an added health benefit. The tea may be taken three times a day for maximum benefits.
Alternatively, you can make a ginger turmeric paste by mixing the ingredients in a mortar and pestle. When you add the paste to warm water it will dissolve and create a tea.
The Bottom Line
There’s no doubt that ginger and turmeric are great additions to the kitchen. Not only do they taste good, but they can have health benefits too. However, these spices are not a magic solution for weight loss. Instead, you need to eat a healthy diet while also exercising regularly if you want to see results.
Also, talk to your doctor before taking any supplements to make sure that they will not interfere with other medications you may be taking.
This article is intended for general informational purposes only and does not address individual circumstances. It is not a substitute for professional advice or help and should not be relied on to make decisions of any kind. Any action you take upon the information presented in this article is strictly at your own risk and responsibility!
- Curcumin: A Review of Its Effects on Human Health (2017, nih.gov)
- Ginger on Human Health: A Comprehensive Systematic Review of 109 Randomized Controlled Trials (2020, nih.gov)
- Iron Deficiency Anemia Due to High-dose Tumeric (2019, nih.gov)
- Pharmacokinetic interactions of curcuminoids with conventional drugs: A review (2017, pubmed.gov)
- Potential interactions between alternative therapies and warfarin (2000, pubmed.gov)
- Spices, turmeric, ground (2019, usda.gov)
- The Effects of Pre-Exercise Ginger Supplementation on Muscle Damage and Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness (2015, pubmed.gov)
- Total and soluble oxalate content of some Indian spices (2012, pubmed.gov)
- Turmeric: Potential Health Benefits (2020, lww.com)