High cholesterol: This common spice can help reduce cholesterol levels

Studies have shown that herbal teas could be used in the treatment of some medical conditions, such as high cholesterol.

High levels of cholesterol is not good for the body; it can increase the risk of heart conditions. People with high cholesterol are advised to eat healthier diets. A particular hot drink has been found to significantly reduce cholesterol levels, and it is made from a common spice found in most kitchens.

Not an ordinary drink

For millennia, ginger has been used to treat nausea, vomiting, motion sickness and headaches. Now, scores of researchers suggest it has the ability to reduce inflammation, making it beneficial for the heart and for lowering cholesterol levels.

A 2018 study on more than 60 people with high cholesterol found that those who had five grams of ginger powder a day saw a 17% reduction in their LDL (bad cholesterol) levels.

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Getty/ BURCU ATALAY TANKUT

It works by activating enzymes that increase the body’s use of cholesterol and then lowering it. Ginger can be consumed in many forms including tea, capsules ginger extracts and ginger oil.

To make ginger tea - the most common form - you boil sliced fresh ginger root for 10 to 20 minutes, after which you strain and drink it as tea.

You can also include it in recipes such as bakery items, soups, poultry and fish.

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Safe use

Although touted for its health benefits, it can result in serious side effects if abused. Some people also have conditions that make them intolerant of the spice. Consuming ginger root may cause nausea or stomach upset in some people and heartburn in others.

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Getty/ Joff Lee

However, a safe way of using ginger is to cook with it or brew it into tea. But it is advisable to consult one’s doctor, especially if there’s an underlying health condition.

Also, since ginger can interfere with certain medications or cause, a doctor should prescribe how much of the spice you should take daily.
If your cholesterol levels are normal, you do need to have this herb daily. Experts recommend you do not consume more than half a teaspoon equivalent of powdered ginger per day.

Discover the health benefits of these common herbs and spices Discover the health benefits of these common herbs and spices