6 Top Benefits & Uses Of Galangal | Galanga | Thai Ginger | Thai Galanga For Health, Hair & Skin

Galangal is referred to the rhizome of four plants belonging to the ginger family. They are widely used all over the word both for cooking and as a medicine. They are also generally referred to as galanga or thai ginger too because of their wide usage in Thai cuisine. The four plants whose rhizomes are called galangal are Alpinia Galanga (Greater Galangal in English), Alipina Officinarum (Lesser Galangal in English), Kempferia galanga (Aromatic Ginger) and Boesenbergia Rotunda (Finger Root). Out of these four, the lesser glalangal and the greater galangal are widely used in home remedies in India. Alpinina galanga is called perarathai in Tamil and kulanjan in Hindi. Alpinia Officinarum is called chitharathai in Tamil and Chotta Kulanjan in Hindi. More than the greater galangal, lesser galangal is the most commonly used in home remedies here in our place and many people always stock chitharathai at home. Both these roots are used fresh in cooking in many Asian countries, especially Thai cuisine uses them in plenty. Here in India, fresh roots are hard to get but we get the dried roots easily. Galangal roots are used rarely in our place for daily cooking. If used, the recipe is mostly used as medicine. Galangal roots have been used in traditional medicine for thousands of years and it is so very commonly used in home remedies that many will be aware of these herbs (atleast the lesser galangal). Both are commonly used for treating respiratory problems like cough and phlegm, stomach problems, joint pains and skin disease. We get both the dried galangal roots in herbal shops, buy and sun dry them well again and store. 


 1. Galangal For Cough:

To use galangal for cough, take a small piece of lesser galangal and pound it in a mortar and pestle with palm candy till coarsely pounded. Boil a cup of water and add the pounded mixture and boil till the mixture is reduced to half. Strain and take the mixture twice in a day to treat cough. For children give half the amount….

2. Galangal For Skin: Remedy For Inflammation

Pound the smaller galangal first and then grind the galangal root along with little water to form a fine paste. This paste can be used for treating any kind of inflammation and pain. Galangal has got anti inflammatory properties making it a very effective remedy for easing the inflammation.

3. Galangal For Sore Throat:

For sore throat, take a small piece of galangal and pound it once to break it. Now take a small broken piece and suck on it for some time. This is a good home remedy for sore throat and throat infections.

4. Galangal For Hair:

Like all the rhizomes of the ginger family, galangal also treats scalp problems well. The paste of galangal root mixed with curd can be applied as a hair pack, it will treat scalp problems like dandruff and itchiness. For the pack, pound lesser galangal, add thick fresh yogurt and make a fine paste and apply as a hair pack. Wait for 15 minutes and wash it off

 5. Galangal For Mild Fever: 

Galangal mixed with nilavembu (above picture) is a good home remedy for body pain that many suffer after getting cold related fever or during cold. For the remedy, take 1/2 inch piece of greater galangal and mix it 5 to 6 leaves of nilavembu and boil it along with a cup of water till it reduces in half. Take this decoction twice in a day.

 6. Galangal For Digestion:

Galangal is also a good home remedy for improving the digestion. For people who suffer from lack of appetite, 1/4 tsp of lesser galangal powder (either store bought or made at home) mixed with honey will treat it well. Try consuming it once morning and night.