Ginger Soothes Senses as a Drug-Free Migraine Treatment

August 2, 2012

It makes the whole house smell wonderful when baked in cookies. It’s found in teas, Asian dishes, and in candies…it’s the amazing ginger root!  It is also believed to be a drug free migraine treatment that many chronic migraine sufferers incorporate into their comprehensive migraine treatment plan.

What is it
With historical origins in Asia, India and the Middle East the ginger plant root has long been used in various foods as well as in healing therapies. Its anti-inflammatory properties are believed to help with a variety of conditions from digestive disorders and nausea to arthritis and colic. Ginger root is found in most produce sections of grocery stores.  Usually a brown peel covers the pink or tan, dry and fibrous flesh.

How does it work
A 1990 scientific report, out of the Institute of Biology, Odense University, Denmark, found that ginger might have preventative and abortive effects on migraines by blocking prostaglandins, thought to contribute to migraines.  It is believed that ginger contains anti-inflammatory properties.  The University of Maryland Medical Center suggests important active components of the ginger root are volatile oils and pungent phenol compounds (including gingerols and shogaols).

How do you use it
Ginger is available in various forms: extracts, capsules, oils, powder, dried or fresh.  The best ways to take ginger as a drug free migraine treatment, are steeped in boiling water as a tea, powder, dried as a snack, freshly grated in various dishes, blended into juice, or in supplement form.  If you are hoping to treat chronic migraines, sprinkling some ginger powder in cookie batter or sipping ginger ale, probably isn’t enough to be very effective at all.

Some Things to Consider
The website of the University of Maryland Medical Center indicates that ginger or (zingiber officinale) is an herb that may have migraine benefits, but may have side effects, interact with other supplements, herbs or medications and should be taken under the advice of your health practitioner.  Individuals who are taking blood thinners or have bleeding disorders are especially cautioned to use care with taking ginger. Women who may be pregnant should also avoid ginger.

It seems that science isn’t yet certain of the ginger’s efficacy as a drug free migraine therapy, but if you suffer with chronic migraines, and are looking into trying a new conservative therapy, some gingerbread cookies, ginger ale and stir-fried ginger chicken may at the very least soothe your senses.

Photo courtesy © Can Stock Photo Inc.

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