Ginger is an herb. The rhizome (underground stem) is used as a spice and also as a medicine. It can be used fresh, dried and powdered, or as a juice or oil. Ginger is commonly used to treat various types of "stomach problems," including motion sickness, morning sickness, colic, upset stomach, gas, diarrhea, nausea and vomiting after surgery, as well as loss of appetite. Other uses include treating upper respiratory tract infections, cough, and bronchitis.
Shanmugam KR, Mallikarjuna K, Kesireddy N, Sathyavelu Reddy K. Neuroprotective effect of ginger on anti-oxidant enzymes in streptozotocin-induced diabetic rats. 1. Food Chem Toxicol. 2011 Apr;49(4):893-7. Epub 2010 Dec 22.
The aim of the present study was to investigate the effect of ginger on oxidative stress markers in the mitochondrial fractions of cerebral cortex (CC), cerebellum (CB), hippocampus (HC) and hypothalamus (HT) of diabetic rats. diabetes exacerbates neuronal injury induced by hyperglycemia mediated oxidative damage. A marked decrease in anti-oxidant marker enzymes, superoxide dismutase (SOD), catalase (CAT), glutathione peroxidase (GPx), glutathione reductase (GR), reduced glutathione (GSH) and increase in malondialdehyde (MDA) was observed in the diabetic rats. Decreased activities of anti-oxidant enzymes in diabetic rats were augmented on oral administration of ginger. Moreover, ginger administration depleted the MDA level, which was earlier increased in the diabetic rats. These results suggest that ginger exhibit a neuroprotective effect by accelerating brain anti-oxidant defense mechanisms and down regulating the MDA levels to the normal levels in the diabetic rats. Thus, ginger may be used as therapeutic agent in preventing complications in diabetic patients.