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The Health Benefits of Ginger (Luya)

Uses|Precautions & warnings|Side Effects|Interactions|Dosage
The Health Benefits of Ginger (Luya)

Uses

Luya, or ginger, is a root vegetable commonly used as a spice in many Asian households or as alternative herbal medicine. Traditionally, it has been used by our elders in treating a lot of ailments, including sore throat and cough. Is luya good for cough? What other ailments can luya cure? Here are the health benefits of eating luya.

What is luya used for?

Luya has anti-inflammatory and anti-microbial properties

It can help kill bacteria such as those that cause the common cold and sore throat. Ginger can be taken raw or in the form of tea to help relieve the congestion in the respiratory passages. It is also said to soothe the throat and reduces the reflex that develops the urge to cough.

It can treat nausea

Another health benefit of eating luya apart is that it fights nausea. Ginger is one of the natural remedies used for nausea caused by different triggers such as pregnancy, travel or motion sickness, chemotherapy, or post-surgery nausea.

It can provide osteoarthritis relief

Because of its anti-inflammatory properties, ginger is sometimes used to treat pain associated with joint soreness. Although not as effective as painkillers and ibuprofen, it does not have harmful side effects like those which are linked to non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs.

It can help relieve pain

Ginger can also be used to treat period pains and cramps. Other uses are for treating headaches, or dental aches.

It can also aid digestion and promote gut health

It protects the gut by reducing spasm and absorbing and neutralizing toxins in the gastrointestinal tract. It also aids digestion by helping our gut digest the food more quickly. With a healthy digestive system, luya can help reduce occurrences of diarrhea and constipation, and can also help prevent colonic/colorectal cancers.

It can help improve blood health

Ginger helps in the treatment of diabetes by lowering blood sugar, and helps prevent cardiovascular diseases by lowering blood fats and blood cholesterol.

It can be used to treat and prevent ulcers

Because of its antibacterial properties, it helps fight off the bacteria, Helicobacter Pylori, which can weaken the stomach lining, allowing for the passage of acid.

It can help eliminate bad breath

Another underrated benefit of luya is that it can be used to eliminate bad breath. Most cases of bad breath are caused by digestion problems. Since ginger helps improve digestion, this is highly recommended for treating halitosis.

It is also known to address fever symptoms

Ginger is a diaphoretic, or a substance that encourages perspiration, making it effective for treating fever-related conditions such as flu and the common cold.

How does it work?

Luya can come in the form of a fresh or dried root, tablets, capsules, liquid extracts, or teas. Its rich micronutrient profile makes it a “superfood.” The main active nutrients in ginger are vitamins A,B,C, and E, and minerals such as iron, magnesium, zinc, phosphorus, and potassium. These are all good for blood circulation, tissue repair, reproductive health, digestive health, and metabolic health.

Ginger also contains an active ingredient called gingerol known for its antibacterial effects. The regular consumption of dietary ginger can therefore lower the odds of contracting bacterial infections.

The anti-inflammatory properties of gingerol helps relieve pain for people with osteoarthritis or rheumatoid arthritis. Gingerols also inhibit formation of cytokines, or the chemical messengers of the immune system.

Precautions & warnings

What should I know before using ginger?

Although there are several health benefits from eating ginger, it can sometimes come with side effects or harmful interactions with your pre-existing medical condition or your medicine. Tell your doctor or consult with a licensed healthcare professional before taking ginger.

How safe is ginger?

Ginger is believed to be generally safe when used as a spice. If used for medicinal purposes, make sure to use as directed, and do not use more than what is recommended. Do not use different formulations of ginger (tablets, liquids, etc.) at the same time, unless directed by your doctor, as it can increase the risk of an overdose.

Special precautions and warnings

Ginger can cause hypersensitivity and gallbladder disease. Ask your doctor or healthcare provider before using ginger if you have certain medical conditions, or if you have any of the following:

  • A bleeding or a blood clotting disorder
  • Diabetes
  • Any heart condition
  • Pregnant or breastfeeding
  • Hypersensitivity
  • Gallbladder disease

Side Effects

What kind of side effects may I have from using luya?

Common side effects of taking ginger can include:

  • Heartburn
  • Diarrhea and/or stomach discomfort
  • Heavier menstrual periods
  • Skin irritation

Although eating luya is generally safe for most people, seek emergency help if you have signs of an allergic reaction such as hives, difficulty breathing, or face, lips, tongue and/or throat swelling.

Stop taking ginger and consult your doctor if you experience any of the following:

  • Easy bruising and/or bleeding
  • Any bleeding that will not stop

Interactions

What interactions may I have with luya?

Ginger may interact with your current medication or medical conditions. It has mild interactions with at least 73 different drugs. It is said to contraindicate with hypersensitivity and gallbladder disease. Consult with your doctor before using for medicinal purposes.

Dosage

What is the usual dose for luya?

Dosages vary between 250mg – 1g, depending on your current medical condition. Consult your doctor for appropriate dosages and for proper diagnosis and treatment.

What form does luya come in?

Luya can come in the form of a fresh or dried ginger root, or it can come in the form of a tea. Some do steam distillation of ginger oil from the root. Luya is also available in the form of extracts, tinctures, capsules, and oils.

Hello Health Group does not provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.

Picture of the author
Written by Alyssa Mae Singson on May 29, 2020
Medically reviewed by Stephanie Nicole G. Nera, RPh, PharmD
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