Ginger has spiced up our lives for centuries, and traditional healers have trusted ginger to heal their patients. Modern science has confirmed that ginger is not only delicious and healthy but may contain some powerful medicinal properties and it may even fight cancer.
Ginger Contains Anti-Cancer Compounds
A study published in the Journal of Food and Chemical Toxicology indicates that the gingerols, paradols, and shagaols contained in ginger are anti-cancer compounds that can help to prevent cancer.1 But the healing power of ginger does not stop there.
There are a number of new studies that indicate that ginger can kill cancer cells in prostate, ovarian, and colorectal cancer, and that ginger may be more powerful than chemotherapy as an anti-cancer agent.
Ginger Kills Prostate Cancer Cells
The British Journal of Nutrition published the results of an American study in which ginger extract (zingiber officinale Roscoe) inhibited growth of human prostate cancer cells. The results occurred at a daily dose of 100 mg of ginger extract per kg of body weight. In the study, the ginger extract slashed prostate tumor growth in approximately 56%. The researchers have estimated that 100 grams of fresh ginger eaten daily will offer the same results for a 70 Kg adult.
The research showed that the use of ginger for cancer did not affect the other cells in the body that need to divide rapidly, like the bone and stomach cells.
The researchers concluded: “the present study is the first report to describe identification and detailed evaluation of in vitro and in vivo anticancer activity of whole GE (ginger extract) in the therapeutic management of human prostate cancer.”
This may make ginger more effective than chemotherapy since chemotherapy does affect these and other healthy cells in the body.
Further reading: You can get familiar with the warning signs and symptoms of prostate cancer.
But ginger is not only effective for prostate cancer cells and can also help to kill ovarian cancer cells.
Ginger Kills Ovarian Cancer Cells
Angiogenesis is the term that describes the start of cancer. If you can stop cancer from taking hold in the ovaries then you can effectively prevent cancer.
In a study published by BMC Complementary and Alternative Medicine, scientists proved that the active ingredients in ginger root had anti-angiogenic properties and that they effectively stop cancer cells from growing. The study concluded that ginger can help to prevent and treat ovarian cancer.2
In experiments presented at the American Association for Cancer, scientists from the University of Michigan showed that ginger also helps to kill cancer cells and that unlike chemotherapy, ovarian cancer cells do not become resistant to this type of therapy.3
With less side effects, less toxicity and no chance of developing drug resistance, ginger may actually offer more benefits for ovarian cancer patients that traditional chemotherapy.
Further reading: Get familiar with these 8 early warning signs of ovarian cancer.
Ginger and Colorectal Cancer
In 2003, scientists presented evidence that ginger protects against colorectal cancer at the Frontiers in Cancer Prevention Research conference. This is just one of the studies that show that ginger can help to prevent cancer.3
In a study published in the Journal of Nutrition in 2015, researchers showed that ginger not only prevents colorectal cancer but also may actually kill colorectal cancer cells, making ginger a chemo-preventive and therapeutic option for those struggling with colorectal cancer.4
Further reading: Learn about these 10 warning signs of colorectal cancer, as well as these 11 steps to reduce your risk for developing colorectal cancer.
Why Ginger Shows a Potential to Be Better than Chemotherapy
Evidence suggests that ginger can help to prevent numerous types of cancer and is effective at killing ovarian, prostate, and colorectal cancers, but unlike chemotherapy, ginger offers a natural and less dangerous alternative to chemotherapy.Ginger does not harm healthy cells, it does not poison patients, and it prevents and kills cancer cells.
However keep in mind that this issue is still under research, as some of the studies were conducted in vitro or on mice, and further research is still needed on humans.
How To Use Ginger as as Medicine
The above findings can suggest that regularly consuming ginger as part of a healthy diet and lifestyle might help prevent cancer from even taking root in the first place.
For even greater effect you can consume ginger with these 14 foods that protect against cancer development and remember to avoid these 5 cancer causing foods.
In general, it is not recommended to take more than 4 g of ginger per day, whereas pregnant women should not take more than 1 g per day.5