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Zingiber officinale Roscoe (A Medicinal Plant)

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Abstract

Ginger has been used for centuries to support many various digestive imbalances including heartburn, indigestion, nausea, diarrhea and motion sickness. Zingiber officinale is commonly prescribed to treat nausea, but it is also used as an anti-inflammatory agent and cholesterol-lowering herb. Ginger is considered safe for supplemental use. It has anticoagulant affects also. This drug is prescribed in gout, rheumatoid arthritis and other inflammatory conditions.
Pakistan Journal of Nutrition 10 (4): 399-400, 2011
ISSN 1680-5194
© Asian Network for Scientific Information, 2011
Correspondence Author: Muhammad Akram, Department of Basic Clinical and Medical Sciences, Faculty of Eastern Medicine,
Hamdard University, Karachi, Madinat-al-Hikmah, Muhammad Bin Qasim Avenue, Karachi, 74600, Pakistan
399
Zingiber officinale Roscoe (A Medicinal Plant)
M. Akram , M. Ibrahim Shah , Khan Usmanghan , E. Mohiuddin , Abdul Sami , M. Asif ,
1 1 1 1 1 1
S.M. Ali Shah , Khalil Ahmed and Ghazala Shaheen
2 2 2
Shifa ul Mulk Memorial Hospital, Faculty of Eastern Medicine, Hamdard University, Karachi, Pakistan
1
Department of Conventional Medicine, Islamia University, Bahawalpur, Pakistan
2
Abstract: Ginger has been used for centuries to support many various digestive imbalances including
heartburn, indigestion, nausea, diarrhea and motion sickness. Zingiber officinale is commonly prescribed
to treat nausea, but it is also used as an anti-inflammatory agent and cholesterol-lowering herb. Ginger is
considered safe for supplemental use. It has anticoagulant affects also. This drug is prescribed in gout,
rheumatoid arthritis and other inflammatory conditions.
Key words: Ginger, digestive problems, gout, rheumatoid arthritis
INTRODUCTION
Ginger holds an important place in several traditional
systems of medicine. Ginger originally came from China
and India, where it has been used in cooking for more
than 4,000 years. It was liked for its sharp and spicy
flavor. Ginger products are made from fresh or dried
ginger root or steam distillation of the oil. Ginger is a
well known herbal medicine which is usually used in
traditional medicine in all over the world. Zingiber
officinale has many phytonutrients and has aromatic and
pungent taste. The root of Zingiber officinale is
commonly used in herbal prescriptions Ginger contains
Essential oils especially gingerol and zingiberene. It
also contains pungent principles such as zingerone,
gingerol and shogaol (Yamahara, 1985). For centuries,
in Alternative and complementary systems of medicine,
Zingiber officinale has been prescribed in the treatment
of headache, nervous diseases, nausea and vomiting.
Ginger has been noted to treat migraine headaches
without side-effects (Mustafa and Srivastava, 1990). In
addition, it is also recommended in the treatment of
rheumatoid arthritis and gout.
A herbaceous rhizomatous perennial, reaching up to 90
cm in height under cultivation. Rhizomes are aromatic,
thick lobed, pale yellowish, bearing simple alternate
distichous narrow oblong lanceolate leaves. The herb
develops several lateral shoots in clumps, which begin
to dry when the plant matures. Leaves are long and 2-3
cm broad with sheathing bases, the blade gradually
tapering to a point. Inflorescence solitary, lateral radical
pedunculate oblong cylindrical spikes. Flowers are rare,
rather small, calyx superior, gamosepalous, three
toothed, open splitting on one side, corolla of three
subequal oblong to lanceolate connate greenish
segments (Kawai, 1994).
Chemical Constituents: Ginger contains a number of
pungent constituents and active ingredients. Pungency
of ginger is due to gingerol. Steam distillation of
powdered ginger produces ginger oil, which contains a
high proportion of sesquiterpene hydrocarbons,
predominantly zingiberene. The major pungent
compounds in ginger, from studies of the lipophilic
rhizome extracts, have yielded potentially active
gingerols, which can be converted to shogaols,
zingerone, and paradol. The compound 6-gingerol
appears to be responsible for its characteristic taste.
Gingerols and shagaols are non volatile phenolic
compounds with different side chains (Govindarajan,
1982).
Medicinal uses: Zingiber officinale is a popular
stomach-settler and has been popular for thousands of
years as a treatment for digestive problems ranging
from mild indigestion and flatulence to nausea, vomiting
and travel sickness. It has also been used to relieve
symptoms of colds and arthritis due to its anti-
inflammatory properties (Kapil et al., 1990). Ginger in
Traditional Use Ginger is an essential ingredient in
many traditional Chinese medicines and has been used
since the 4 century BC. Africans and West Indians also
th
use ginger medicinally and the Greeks and Romans
use it as spice. The Chinese take ginger for a wide
variety of medical problems such as stomachache,
diarrhoea, nausea, cholera, asthma, heart conditions,
respiratory disorders, toothache and rheumatic
complaints. In Ayurveda, ginger has been recommended
for use as carminative, diaphoretic, antispasmodic,
expectorant, peripheral circulatory stimulant, astringent,
appetite stimulant, anti-inflammatory agent, diuretic and
digestive aid (Johri and Zutshi, 1992). In United States,
ginger is recommended to relieve and prevent nausea
caused by motion sickness and morning sickness.
Pak. J. Nutr., 10 (4): 399-400, 2011
400
Clinical study include abdominal discomfort, heartburn, diarrhea and
Gout: The clinical study was conducted on Gouticin that a pepper-like irritant effect in the mouth and throat.
contains different medicinal herbs including ZingiberTopically, ginger can cause dermatitis in sensitive
officinale, used as analgesic in Gouty arthritis. Studyindividuals.
was conducted in Shifa ul Mulk Memorial Hospital,
Hamdard University, Karachi. The drug was prescribedConclusion: Ginger is aromatic stimulant, carminative
to 50 patients between ages of 35 years to 75 years. The
selected drug was administered to attain a successful
response to gout. Herbal formulation Gouticine was
administered to 50 patients. Clinical study of Gouticin
shows that it exhibits the anti-inflammatory effects. It was
concluded that Gouticin is remarkably effective for the
treatment of acute gout arthritis (Akram, 2009).
Rheumatoid arthritis: An herbal drug arthritin containing
different medicinal hers including Zingiber officinale was
evaluated in comparison with methotrexate for the
treatment of rheumatoid arthritis.
Study was conducted in Shifa ul Mulk Memorial Hospital,
Hamdard University, Karachi. Herbal formulation Arthritin
was administered to 50 patients. Clinical study shows
that arthritin exhibits the anti-inflammatory effects. It was
concluded that arthritin is effective for the treatment of
rheumatoid arthritis(Owais, 2009).
Primary dysmennorrhoea: An herbal drug dysmo off
containing different medicinal hers including Zingiber
officinale was evaluated in comparison with diclofenic
sodium (voren) for the treatment of primary
dysmennorrhoea. This comparative study was carried
out on 120 patients of ages between 13-30 years in
seven consecutive episodes at department of
gynecology and obstetrics in Shifa ul Mulk Memorial
Hospital, Hamdard University, Karachi. It was concluded
that dysmo off is more effective than voren for treatment
of dysmennorrhoea (Halima, 2004).
Drug interactions: No drug interactions are known;
however, due to ginger’s apparent effect on platelets, it
should be used cautiously in individuals using
anticoagulants (Suekawa, 1984).
Adverse effects: Orally, ginger is usually well tolerated
when used in typical doses. However, higher doses of 5
grams per day increase the risk of side effects and
decrease tolerability. Common side effects of ginger
and flavouring agent. It is prescribed in dyspepsia,
flatulent colic, nausea, vomiting, cold, cough and
asthma. Zinger is utilized in Sore throat, hoarseness.
Zingiber officinale is commonly prescribed in the
treatment of rheumatoid arthritis, gout and other
musculoskeletal disorders.
REFERENCES
Akram, 2009. Clinical evaluation of herbal medicine for
the treatment of hyperuricemia and gout, M. Phil
Thesis, Hamdard University, Karachi.
Govindarajan, V.S., 1982. Ginger - chemistry, technology,
and quality evaluation: part 2. Crit. Rev. Food Sci.
Nutr., 17: 189-258.
Halima, N., 2004. Clinical evaluation of herbal medicine
for female disorders, dysmenorrhoea and vaginal
discharge, M. Phil thesis, Hamdard University,
Karachi.
Johri, R.K. and U. Zutshi, 1992. An ayurvedic formulation
Trikatu' and its constituents. J. Ethnopharmacol.,
37: 85-91.
Kapil, U., A.K. Sood and D.R. Gaur, 1990. Maternal
beliefs regarding diet during common childhood
illnesses. In. Pediatr., 27: 595-599.
Kawai, T., 1994. Anti-emetic principles of Magnolia
obovata bark and Zingiber officinale rhizome.
Planta Medica, 60: 17-20.
Mustafa, T. and K.T. Srivastava, 1990. Ginger (Zingiber
officinale) in Migraine Headache. J.
Ethnopharmacol., 29: 267-273.
Owais, M., 2009. Clinical evaluation of herbal medicine
for the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis, M. Phil
thesis, Hamdard University, Karachi.
Suekawa, M., 1984. Pharmacological action of pungent
constituents, (6)-Gingerol and (6)-Shogaol. J.
Pharmacobio-Dynamics, 7: 836-848.
Yamahara, J., 1985. Cholagogic effect of ginger and its
active constituents. J. Ethnopharmacol., 13: 217-
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Clinical evaluation of herbal medicine for the treatment of hyperuricemia and gout
  • Akram
Akram, 2009. Clinical evaluation of herbal medicine for the treatment of hyperuricemia and gout, M. Phil Thesis, Hamdard University, Karachi.
Clinical evaluation of herbal medicine for female disorders, dysmenorrhoea and vaginal discharge
  • N Halima
Halima, N., 2004. Clinical evaluation of herbal medicine for female disorders, dysmenorrhoea and vaginal discharge, M. Phil thesis, Hamdard University, Karachi.