The spicy aromatic ginger root has been in use for centuries and we use it almost every day in some form or other. Ginger is a very safe spice and is genrally safe for everyone in the amounts we use in cooking and since it is spicy, it can’t be consumed in large amounts too. But it therapeutic dosages, it does have some side effects and it is important we get to know them before consuming it on a regular basis.
What Is Ginger?
Ginger is a flowering plant whose root is widely used in cooking and remedies. Ginger belongs to the family Zingiberaceae, the same family that includes turmeric and cardamom. India is the largest producer of ginger. Ginger is used in many forms like fresh ginger, dried ginger, ginger powder, ginger juice, ginger infusion, candied ginger, etc.
5 Top Ginger Side Effects
1. Ginger Allergy
Very rarely, some people might be allergic to ginger. Ginger allergy can cause rashes and discomfort in the mouth and stomach immediately after consuming anything with ginger. If you are allergic to ginger, do not consume products made exclusively with ginger.
2. Drug Interactions
Since it lowers high blood pressure and blood sugar levels, it can interact with blood pressure and diabetic medications if had in therapeutic dosages. It also interacts with medicines that slows down blood clotting (anticoagulant medications).
Few months back, I had made ginger concentrate at home to be mixed with water when guests arrive. My cousin accidentally took a big gulp of it and immediately she had diarrhea and stomach pain.
4. Heart Burn & Gastric Burning
I personally experience gastric burning if I have ginger in excess. I feel the amount we are consuming is critical here, try not to go above 4 grams per day.
5. Irritable Bowel Syndrome and Ulcers
People suffering from irritable bowel syndrome and stomach ulcers will experience stomach discomfort when they consume ginger even in slightly larger amounts. For them, I would suggest not consuming ginger extract alone like in the form of tea or ginger juice. Instead they can consume it mixed with other ingredients like in the form of smoothies.
6. Ginger Side Effects For Hair:
Ginger is used as a home remedy for treating dandruff and scalp inflammation, we use it in the form of ginger hair oil and ginger hair packs. Usually ginger hair treatments are very safe. When you apply ginger juice on the scalp, you will experience mild tingling sensation which is normal but if you experience severe burning sensation, please discontinue use.
Side Effects Noticed In Clinical Trials
Some side effects were noticed in clinical trials in dosages above 700 mg. Headache, abdominal pain, diarrhea, bloating, gas, nausea, irritation, drowsiness, heartburn, gastric burning, intense urge to urinate are some off the side effects associated with ginger consumption in studies ranging from 2% to 10% of the cases.
a. Symptoms When Consuming 750 mg Ginger Per Day
Heartburn was reported in 3.2 % cases. Headache, abdominal pain, diarrhea and nausea were reported in 2.1 % cases
b. Symptoms When Consuming 1000 mg per day
Heart burn was reported in 7% cases, diarrhea in 4% cases, mouth irritation in 1% cases, abdominal pain in 10% cases.
Ginger Safe Dosage To Prevent Side Effects:
It is best not to go above 4 grams per day to prevent all the side effects mentioned above. Usually for treating nausea 1 gram is recommended, 250 mg for menstrual pain, 500 mg for morning sickness and arthritic pain. These are general suggestions, if you are suffering from any medical conditions, please consult your physician before taking ginger in large amounts daily.