Ginger as a Remedy for Psoriasis
Talk to your doctor or nutritionist before taking any herbal remedy for your psoriasis or psoriatic arthritis, especially if you are pregnant or breastfeeding, or are taking any medications.
Ginger (Zingiber officinale) has a long history of use as both food and medicine. Among practitioners of herbal medicine, remedies derived from ginger root – such as ginger tea or ginger juice – are well known for their ability to alleviate digestive problems, but they may also help fight a range of other health problems, especially conditions linked to chronic inflammation. Anecdotal reports, for example, suggest that ginger may help ease psoriasis symptoms in some people — not surprising considering that psoriasis is classified as an inflammatory skin condition. Also The Everything Juicing Book lists ginger as one of the foods you should look into if you suffer from psoriasis.
Aside from the potential beneficial effects on psoriatic skin, ginger may also provide some additional, non-skin related benefits for people with psoriasis. For example, ginger has shown promise as a natural remedy for rheumatoid arthritis, a chronic inflammatory condition that causes joint pain and that appears to be particularly common among people with psoriasis. In fact, rheumatoid arthritis has been identified as one of the most common co-morbidities associated with psoriasis. In medicine, the term co-morbidity is used to refer to the concurrence of multiple diseases or disorders, and the diseases that occur concurrently are often thought to be related to common pathogenetic mechanisms. A study published in the journal Medical Hypotheses found that more than three-quarters of study participants with rheumatoid arthritis or osteoarthritis experienced relief in pain and swelling after treatment with powdered ginger root. The researchers who conducted this study believe the observed anti-arthritic effects of ginger might be linked, at least part, to its ability to inhibit the biosynthesis of pro-inflammatory compounds called prostaglandins and leukotrienes.
The Bottom Line
So far, scientists have shown little interest in studying the potential beneficial effects of common ginger in psoriasis patients; however, anecdotal reports suggest that ginger might be good for some psoriasis patients. Therefore, if you suffer from psoriasis and there is no specific reason why you should avoid ginger, why not give this knobbly root a try? As with any food remedy, you can always abandon if it doesn't work.
There are tons of ginger recipes to help you incorporate this knobbly root into your diet, but the easiest way to add it to your diet is probably to consume it in the form of ginger tea. Pre-packaged dry ginger tea is widely available in stores across North America and the UK, but you can also buy it online (you can buy certified organic ginger tea here). Of course, you can also use fresh ginger to make a cup of healing ginger tea simply by pouring some hot, boiled water over sliced or grated ginger.
Dr. John Pagano has gained international fame with his ground-breaking book, Healing Psoriasis, which has been translated into numerous languages. In this compelling book, Dr. Pagano presents an all-natural regimen designed to alleviate and heal psoriasis without steroid creams, tar baths, injections, or ultraviolet treatments. Packed with invaluable diet and lifestyle tips, recipes, case studies, and before-and-after photos, Healing Psoriasis is a great resource for anyone interested in a drug-free treatment for psoriasis. Available from Amazon.com and Amazon.co.uk.
Make it a habit to visit HealWithFood.org's online Guide to Healing Psoriasis on a regular basis. Updated once a week, the sidebar on the home page of the guide contains tons of links to interesting nutrition-related articles hand-picked for psoriasis sufferers. It also contains a weekly smoothie recipe featuring ingredients with psoriasis-fighting potential, as well as a book tip.