Ginger root is a popular ingredient often seen in Asian and Indian cooking. In fact, ginger has been used for thousands of years not only for cooking but for medicinal purposes as well. While it is a staple in many kitchens, consumers are quickly opting to jump on the ginger tea bandwagon because the ginger tea benefits seem outstanding.
It is increasingly becoming a mainstay in tea shops around the world because of its refreshing flavor and wellbeing qualities. Nowadays ginger is so ubiquitous but it’s qualities as a tea flavor are often underestimated.
However, before we jump into all the details of ginger tea benefits, let’s look at this spice in more detail.
What is Ginger Root?
While most individuals associate ginger as a dried spice, it is worth noting that ginger comes from the root of the plant otherwise known as Zingiber officinale. This flowering plant is native to Southeast Asia, although it is cultivated in the regions across the globe.
The plant itself can grow to around three feet tall and is recognized by the clusters of greenish-purple flowers. While most acknowledge ginger root as the yellow root, we find in our grocery stores; it can also come in other variations and colors—including red and white.
“The ginger plant is a creeping perennial with thick, tuberous underground stems that can grow up to one meter in height. Cultivated mainly in tropical countries, Jamaican ginger – a paler variety – is regarded as the best variety for culinary use. According to Chinese tradition, dried ginger tends to be hotter than fresh.”(BBC)
History of Ginger
The ginger root has been around for quite a while whether that be in cooking or in medicine. “The Indians and ancient Chinese used the root of ginger as a tonic to treat common ailments”(MEL). It was used for many years in that region for medicinal purposes before it ever reached the rest of the world as a food product.
During the 1st century, many traders from China and India began to take ginger into the Mediterranean regions. “Eventually, it became a popular spice in Rome. Unfortunately, the use of ginger fell from use once the Roman Empire fell. At this point, ginger’s worth had increased. It was commonly used to make delicacy sweets in medieval times.”(MEL)
“By the mid-16th century, Europe was receiving more than 2000 tonnes per year from the East Indies”(BBC). In the next few hundred years, the popularity spread to the Americas and it continues to be one of the most commonly used spices in the world.
See also: Filipino Salabat
So, Is Ginger Tea Good for You?
Whether it be fresh ginger, organic or a store-bought blend, ginger tea is considered a good part of a daily routine. It can provide the right sort of kick to get your day going.
Why is that and what are the health benefits of ginger tea? Because there are so many different uses of ginger tea in the culinary sense, and each one still provides individuals with a variety of nutritional benefits, such as:
- Vitamin B3 & B6
- Vitamin C
- Zinc Magnesium
These nutrients and vitamins are super important for cell growth, good eyesight, development of red blood cells and so much more. While ginger is unlikely to be your main and only source of these – you’d have to chow down on quite a bit of it! – it’s a great way to top up and supplement.
The bioactive compounds and nutrients that ginger packs mean that whether you just cook your meals with ginger or rustle up a cup of ginger tea you will be promoting the health of your body and mind. Ginger has a long history as an ingredient for alternative medicine because of these qualities.
That’s only a short list of the nutritional benefits of adding ginger to your daily routine. Depending on how you decide to use it will determine what other health and nutritional benefits may be added. While drinking the tea is the more traditional method of receiving these benefits, there are many different uses of ginger tea worth noting:
- Homemade salad dressings
- Marinades for fish and meat
- Even baking desserts
Why not experiment and give it a try? Ginger’s spicy, sharp and unique flavor adds a twist and complements so many others. Here are some ginger recipes to get your creative juices flowing. Hopefully, you can try and incorporate some of these into your daily routine. Experimenting with new dietary spices and ingredients is always fun!
Fresh Ginger Tea vs. Organic Ginger Tea: Is There Really a Difference?
When it comes down to it the fresh vs. organic topic, there is no significant difference besides the price you plan to pay. In most cases, retailers will charge you more for organic ginger root than for “fresh.”
You always have to be wary of labels. Sometimes when they promise great things you have to be careful. Thankfully, when it comes to ginger things shouldn’t be too complicated. It is either fresh ginger tea or organic ginger tea.
Is organic ginger tea better for consumers? Generally, it is thought to be “better” in that it will not have been farmed in a location that uses chemical pesticides and will not go through a cleaning process that includes chemicals during the shipping process.
So if you are looking for a clean and natural experience you may want to choose the organic ginger tea.
However, when it comes down to fresh vs. organic, consumers will still receive the same health benefits when grated up and added to their cup of tea. We would recommend trying both organic and fresh ginger tea. Once you have found your favorite tea then you can delve deeper into the incredible health benefits.
3 Health Benefits Of Ginger Tea Worth Noting
Ginger tea benefits range quite a bit; however, some are more noteworthy than others. Ginger is not a miracle worker but it can be a great addition to your diet. The effects of ginger tea on the body are quite astounding, so much so that consumers use it in products other than teas, such as:
- Liquid Extracts
So, what does ginger tea do? It is important to know exactly how much you can get out of ginger. We’ve gone ahead and listed three of the more noteworthy fresh ginger tea benefits we came across while doing our research.
1. Treating Nausea
When it comes to tummy troubles, either chewing on fresh ginger or drinking a cup of ginger-tea for nausea is an age-old home remedy. Indeed, it is a remedy that your grandmother might recommend if you came to her as a child complaining about belly aches and feeling sick.
The active component in ginger, gingerols, is what scientists have linked to helping treat nausea in not only motion and morning sickness but also nausea brought on by specific medical treatments for conditions like cancer.
Other studies have shown that ginger could help relieve gastrointestinal irritations (GI) that lead to sickness. There have been plenty of studies that focus on the efficacy of ginger for the prevention of nausea and vomiting that seems to suggest that ginger has a positive effect.
In terms of advice on how to take ginger tea for nausea, it varies. As you might expect with a homeopathic remedy, there are no definites.
General guidelines advise around four cups, and that fresh ginger might work better. Take care to sip slowly. If you try and glug it down like medicine it may make your nausea worse. Patient and measured sips of a good ginger tea throughout the day should help to limit any feelings of nausea and sickness.
While some studies have shown promising results, varying factors have lead scientists to state that more in-depth studies are needed before they can verify any conclusions.
2. Reducing Pain & Inflammation
Ginger root found in supplements and teas was linked to a reduction in both pain and inflammation throughout the body.
Many studies have suggested that ginger plays a positive role when it comes to those suffering from chronic pain and inflammation. One study showed that taking a ginger supplement did show promise to subjects who responded poorly when given more traditional pain relievers (NSAIDs) to help treat their chronic pain related to knee osteoarthritis. Many individuals not only reported a reduction in their inflamed knees but also an improvement when it came to the overall pain they felt.
A few cups of ginger tea a day may help to reduce pain and inflammation especially if you have chronic joint pain. Obviously, it is important to consult your GP or another medical professional before you start downing pints of ginger tea!
3. Immune System Support
Ginger is known for the many antioxidants that it contains; another reason why many consider it to be an essential part of their daily routine. It’s these antioxidants that are believed to help strengthen a user’s immune system and even help to reduce stress.
While drinking ginger tea is still the most common method of use, besides cooking, of course, some choose to inhale the steam from their steeped ginger because it is believed to help relieve some nasal congestion, along with other respiratory issues.
This may look odd to any passer-by but it is an effective way of reaping the benefits of ginger tea. As the potent aroma fills your nostrils you can rest easy in the knowledge that people have been doing this for hundreds of years. While you may look silly it is a good way of boosting your immune system.
Again, for both pain relief and immune system support, many say fresh ginger is best. Of course, it really is up to you – you might prefer the taste and texture of ginger one way over another. However, we always think the added benefits of tea are its soothing side effects. You just don’t get that chewing on a knob of ginger!
How To Make Ginger Tea in 4 Easy Steps
When it comes down to learning how to make ginger tea, it’s not as difficult as it may seem. In fact, the hardest part will most likely be grating your fresh ginger. Be careful not to catch your finger on the grater!
You’ll only need three ingredients to make our fresh ginger tea, two if you don’t want to add a sweetener:
Once you have your pot of water, freshly grated ginger, and your sweetener should you choose to add one, follow these three simple steps to making your fresh ginger tea.
Boil Your Water
After your water has reached a boil, go ahead and remove it from the heat.
Add Freshly Grated Ginger
Add your freshly grated ginger before covering your pot.
Let your ginger steep for 10 to 15 minutes. The total time will depend on how strong you want the ginger flavor to be.
Strain & Enjoy
Once you’ve let the ginger steep in hot water, you’ll strain the ginger out.
For those who prefer the warm flavors of ginger, this is as far as you’ll need to go. Those who want to sweeten it up a bit, you’ll go ahead and add your sweetener until it tastes like perfection.
You can add a conventional sweetener or you can mix it up with some more intense flavors like honey. Indeed, ginger and honey is a popular tea of choice because these two ingredients blend together so well. Maybe for your next cup try a honey citron ginger tea.
The fun doesn’t have to stop there of course. Some individuals will prefer to add other ingredients, such as lemon, to their ginger tea. What it all comes down to is a person’s flavor profile, so don’t be afraid to try different spices and herbs. Ginger is a strong flavor but it is surprisingly complementary with other flavors like lemon, honey, and orange.
How about ginger tea with milk? The dairy addition is a firm favorite in black tea as it takes the edge off some of the bitterness. Some tea lovers also like adding milk as it creates a more soothing, warming drink. You can also try some instant ginger tea. This will allow the potent ginger to sneak its way into your taste buds.
Milk might not come to mind as a natural buddy for ginger tea, but let us surprise you. There might be a couple of reasons why ginger tea with milk is a great idea.
First off, some more potential health benefits of ginger tea! We all know milk is a nutritional power source. If you’re anything like us you love a glass for its calcium, potassium, protein and Vitamins D and B12.
Add some to your ginger tea and you’re grabbing all those extra nutrients. A cup of ginger tea with milk will give you the best of both worlds and ensure you get the health kick you need.
Otherwise, it’s a matter of taste – another great way to enjoy tea! You’ve heard of chai lattes and turmeric tea, right? Ginger tea with milk is similar. You can warm it up as a milk-based drink, or just use it to fill out your regular cup. It is the perfect warm beverage to start the day with. You can also sip it throughout the day when it is cool.
Why not add some spices? It’s a twist on the traditional warming and spicy fall teas. You might find many tea shops and big chain coffee shops that have ginger in their hot drinks menu during the fall.
Best Ginger Tea
Great, so now you know how to make ginger tea, but where do you get it? As with most teas and infusions, there are tons of options out there. We think the best ginger tea is organic.
Organic keeps all those potential health benefits of ginger tea, while staying natural. It means you don’t get any chemicals or preservatives, and sometimes even bleach-free bags if you’re not using loose leaf.
Added to that, with organic teas the packaging is often recyclable and the ingredients responsibly sourced. It is a good way of staying conscious of the environment and enjoying good quality ginger tea.
So let’s have a look at the variety of ginger teas on offer. Here are some of our favorites and what we think are the best ginger teas.
There is a long and great tradition of ginger tea providing rejuvenating and invigorating qualities.“Yogi Ginger tea builds on this tradition by adding a uniquely delicious blend of Lemongrass, Licorice, Peppermint and Black Pepper for a warming and spicy tea enjoyable any time of day.”
For 30 years they have been producing quality tea and they have had a steady ethos to guide them. It is a popular tea of choice and combines some common flavors to compliment the ginger to make a great cup of tea.
Consumer Rating: 4.5/5 stars | Read Reviews
Choice Organic Tea has also been going for 30 years. They have established a reputation for quality herbal infusions.
For this spicy and inviting cup, they blended “fragrant ginger, the aroma of lemon, a hint of refreshing fennel and sweet licorice root”. The inclusion of fennel and licorice creates a strangely pleasant aftertaste that soothes the mouth and warms the belly.
It is a zesty, herbal tea that provides you with a “comforting and restorative blend based on a popular home remedy”.
Consumer Rating: 4.5/5 stars | Read Reviews
3. Rishi Organic Ginger Turmeric Tea
The list of ingredients for Rishi’s organic ginger tea is long but relatively straightforward: Organic ginger root, organic turmeric, organic licorice root, organic lemongrass, organic orange peel, organic lemon peel, essential lemon, and orange oils. A lot of organic stuff!
It is another tea that offers a nice blend of two strong flavors. The tasting notes provided by Rishi state that every cup should have a “sunshine-hued blend of energetic and warming spices accented with sweet citrus.”
Consumer Rating: 4.7/5 stars | Read Reviews
Is Ginger Good for You?
Is ginger good for you? Well, based on recent studies, that answer seems to be a resounding yes, although, it is important to note that even scientists state that more studies are needed.
The way ginger is used in food, drink and alternative medicine seems to suggest that there are many benefits to consuming ginger. Often the health benefits take center stage but ginger also has a great and unique taste.
This flavor is often paired well with lemon and honey in tea. This potent mixture of spice and sweetness is part of the reason it is so popular, especially during the fall.
The health benefits of ginger tea we talked about are only a small handful of the most noteworthy benefits we came across during our research. Other’s include possible cancer prevention, weight loss, and blood sugar control and even an improvement in blood pressure and overall heart health.
For the many reasons we have discussed above, ginger is also a common ingredient in hearty cooking. In Chinese, the Caribbean, Indian and many other cuisines ginger plays an integral role. Ginger is able to hold a dish together and give the meal a good kick of spice.
There is plenty of evidence to suggest that a few cups of ginger tea will improve your day. And there are plenty of organic and fresh ginger teas from which you can choose. So get a ginger tea bag in your cup in the morning.
So why not give ginger root a try in your morning tea routine? And if you already do, what is your favorite way to brew a cup?
Share with us in the comments below!