Secret Side Effects of Eating Ginger, Say Dietitians — Eat This Not That

By Ghuman


Ginger is a popular spice that has been used for centuries in traditional medicine and cooking. It has a unique flavor and is known for its anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties. But did you know that eating ginger can also have some secret side effects? Dietitians say that ginger can have some unexpected benefits and drawbacks, so it’s important to be aware of them before adding it to your diet. In this article, we’ll explore the secret side effects of eating ginger, according to dietitians. We’ll look at how ginger can help with digestion, reduce inflammation, and even boost your immune system. We’ll also discuss the potential risks of eating too much ginger, such as an increased risk of bleeding and heartburn. Finally, we’ll provide some tips on how to safely incorporate ginger into your diet.

Secret Side Effects of Eating Ginger, Say Dietitians

Ginger is a popular spice used in many dishes, but did you know it can also have some surprising health benefits? Dietitians say that eating ginger can have some secret side effects that you may not be aware of. Here are some of the potential benefits of adding ginger to your diet.

1. Improved Digestion

Ginger is known to help improve digestion by stimulating the production of saliva and bile. This can help break down food more efficiently, leading to better absorption of nutrients. It can also help reduce bloating and gas, as well as reduce nausea and vomiting.

2. Reduced Inflammation

Ginger contains compounds called gingerols, which have anti-inflammatory properties. This can help reduce inflammation in the body, which can help reduce pain and swelling. It can also help reduce the risk of certain chronic diseases, such as heart disease and diabetes.

3. Improved Immunity

Ginger can help boost the immune system by increasing the production of white blood cells. This can help fight off infections and illnesses more effectively. It can also help reduce the severity of colds and flu.

4. Improved Blood Circulation

Ginger can help improve blood circulation by increasing the production of nitric oxide. This can help reduce the risk of heart disease and stroke, as well as improve overall health.

5. Reduced Stress

Ginger can help reduce stress levels by increasing the production of serotonin. This can help improve mood and reduce anxiety. It can also help improve sleep quality.


Eating ginger can have some surprising health benefits. From improved digestion to reduced inflammation and improved immunity, there are many potential benefits of adding ginger to your diet. However, it is important to speak to your doctor before adding ginger to your diet, as it can interact with certain medications.

Ginger is popular year-round for the zippy flavor it adds to sauces and marinades as well as its soothing addition to tea and other beverages. It also happens to be incredibly popular with the holiday season since it’s the star of so many treats and drinks. From gingerbread cookies to spicy ginger punches, it’s one ingredient that smells and tastes like the holidays.

“Fresh ginger is popular in many holiday dishes (i.e. fresh cranberry sauce) because it provides a bright and pungent flavor that pairs well with the heavier foods often found at the holiday table,” says Whitney Linsenmeyer, PhD, RD, LD, spokesperson for the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, and Assistant Professor of Nutrition at Saint Louis University. “Dried ginger is popular in many holiday baked goods (i.e. gingerbread, spice cake) because it pairs with the warm baking spices we often use together (i.e. cinnamon, cloves, cardamom).”

Ginger is a rhizome which is the underground part of a stem. And the most common forms of ginger for cooking are fresh ginger (found at most grocery stores) and dried ginger (found in the dried spice aisle), says Dr. Linsenmeyer. It’s also common in tea blends or in crystallized form for baking.

But whichever way you use and consume it, ginger can actually have some pretty interesting (and surprising) side effects. Here are 6 side effects of eating ginger, according to dietitians. Read on, and for more on how to eat healthy, don’t miss 7 Healthiest Foods to Eat Right Now.

“Ginger has been shown to help to improve gastric motility, which basically means it can help with the movement of food from your mouth to the large intestine so that you have less gas and bloating,” says Amber Pankonin, MS, RD, registered dietitian, and owner of food blog the Stirlist.

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Sliced ginger and ginger root on wooden cutting board

Ever feel that tingly sensation after eating pineapple? You may experience a similar effect when you eat ginger. “The active compounds that provide health benefits may also irritate the mucosal lining of the mouth and throat,” says Dr. Linsenmeyer. “Fresh ginger is often described as ‘pungent’ or ‘spicy’, which can be perceived as somewhat powerful or painful, especially for those not used to the flavor.”

sliced ginger

Listen up, ladies! “In addition to reducing inflammation, there has been some research to show that ginger could be effective in decreasing pain during the first 3-4 days of a menstrual cycle,” says Pankonin.

ginger juice

“This might be helpful for those with joint pain or arthritis throughout the holiday season,” says Pankonin. “Ginger contains gingerols and shogaols, which could help decrease inflammation related to their anti-inflammatory properties.”

RELATED: How to Lower Inflammation Starting Right Now, According to Nutritionists


“The mechanism is not fully understood, but generally the thinking is that ginger is rich in naturally-occurring plant chemicals that function as antioxidants and are anti-inflammatory (which is known to cause weight gain and make losing weight more difficult),” says Dr. Linsenmeyer.

READ MORE: The Verdict on the Best Weight Loss Foods to Eat Every Day

ginger supplements

“Although ginger supplements are considered relatively safe, high doses may cause unwanted symptoms such as gastrointestinal distress (stomach cramping, bloating, gas),” says Dr. Linsemeyer. “The active compounds that provide health benefits may also cause gastrointestinal distress when consumed in high doses, typically in dietary supplement form versus whole food form.”

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