I have discussed the benefits of ginger on my site for some time now. I am particularly impressed by its anti-inflammatory properties, which make it one of the most potent home remedies you can use to relieve pain and motion sickness.
This is why it’s not surprising to learn that ginger oil, extracted from fresh ginger root, also offers these whole body benefits and so much more.
What Is Ginger Oil?
Warm, spicy, and energizing, ginger oil comes from ginger root (Zingiber officinale), a pungent, peculiar-looking underground rhizome.
A member of the Zingiberaceae plant family, this perennial herb grows up to three to four feet high, with narrow spear-shaped leaves, white or yellow flowers, and small tuberous rhizomes with a thick or thin brown skin. Its flesh can be yellow, white, or red, depending on the variety.
Ginger has been valued for thousands of years for its medicinal and culinary properties, particularly in ancient Chinese, Indian, and Greek civilizations.
The Mahabharata, a 4th century BC Indian Sanskrit epic, even describes a stewed meat dish that uses ginger as an ingredient. In Ayurvedic medicine, ginger is considered a key plant.
Eventually, ginger was exported to the Roman Empire and became widely traded in Europe by Arab traders. It was also used as an ingredient in sweets. By the 13th to 14th century, ginger – along with black pepper – became a commonly traded spice. It was said that a pound of ginger could be traded for a sheep.
Ginger is one of the most flexible food ingredients today. It can be eaten fresh or dried, steeped as a tea, or grated into your vegetable juice (one of my personal favorites). The dried root is the source for tinctures and supplements, and is also transformed into ginger oil, an energizing and uplifting oil with a wide range of uses.
Ginger oil has a thin consistency and is light yellow in color, with a pleasantly pungent aroma. The scent varies according to the distillation and quality of the ginger used. However, the most aromatically superior ginger oil is said to come from distilling fresh ginger root.
Uses of Ginger Oil
The benefits of ginger for relieving pain are widely known today, and while I prefer using fresh ginger (eaten raw, grated into your vegetable juice, or steeped into tea), using ginger oil can provide these wholesome benefits as well.
When used topically, ginger oil can help relieve aches and pain, as well as promote normal blood circulation.
Aromatherapists also value ginger oil’s soothing and warming qualities to help address digestive problems. In fact, this is one of ginger oil’s most popular uses: relieving any kind of digestive upset, such as nausea, indigestion, diarrhea, gas, and even morning sickness.
Here are some ways to use ginger oil for various health problems.
Apply two to three drops in a diffuser, or place on a cotton ball or your handkerchief, and then inhale. This will help re-energize and revitalize your body, mind, and soul.
Mix two to three drops in an ounce of carrier oil, and use as a massage oil. This helps relieve backache, arthritis, muscle pain, rheumatism, and fractures, as well as stimulate your circulatory system and revitalize your libido.
You can also add it to your hot bath or put a few drops on a hot or cold compress, and then apply it to the affected areas.
Inhale via a diffuser or vaporizer to relieve sinusitis, sore throat, and runny nose. It can also work as a decongestant.
Massage a drop into your abdomen to relieve gas and diarrhea.
Composition of Ginger Oil
Ginger oil benefits mostly come from its powerful mono- and sesqui-terpenoids, such as neral, geranial, 1,8-cineole, zingiberene, B-bisabolene, and B-sesquiphellandrene. It also contains a-pinene, B-pinene, camphene, linalool, borneol, y-terpineol, nerol, geraniol, and geranyl acetate.
Benefits of Ginger Oil
Ginger oil’s many benefits are attributed to its anti-inflammatory, digestive, expectorant, antiseptic, carminative, analgesic, and stimulating properties. It’s helpful in alleviating various health problems, such as:
Stomach and Bowel Related Problems
Ginger oil helps promote proper digestion, and can be a great remedy for spasms, dyspepsia, indigestion, and flatulence. It can also increase your appetite, which is great for people who are trying to gain weight.