- What are the health benefits of ginger? A dose of 1 gram of ginger root (or rhizome) powder (just under ½ teaspoon) per day may help reduce nausea from motion sickness and pregnancy. Ginger root extracts (which are more concentrated) may also be useful for these purposes and 1 gram of extract has been shown to modestly decrease pain from osteoarthritis (see What It Does).
- What to look for in ginger? The active compounds in ginger are believed to be gingerols and, possibly, shogaols. In the supplements ConsumerLab tested, amounts of gingerols and shogaols ranged from 0.85 mg up to 41.7 mg per daily serving, with ginger chews containing the lowest amounts of these compounds (see Results Table). (Past tests of ginger ales by ConsumerLab found them to contain hardly any gingerols.)
- Which ginger products are best or worst in tests?
- Two ginger supplements provided less ginger than listed (just 34% and 66% of the claimed amounts), another exceeded a limit for lead contamination, and another seemed to have been overexposed to heat, providing a relatively small amount of gingerols (see "What CL Found"). At the same time, we identified a ginger powder supplement of exceptionally high quality at very reasonable cost, making it our Top Pick among ginger supplements.
- We found that only two of the four ginger spices that we selected for testing were are of very high quality, with one spice containing 3 to 4 times as much lead as the others and another spice containing only 88% of its minimum expected gingerols and shogaols. Among the two best products, one cost only 1/10 as much as the other, making it our Top Pick among ginger spices.
- How to use ginger supplements? When taking ginger, particularly larger daily doses, it's generally recommended to divide the dose throughout the day (see ConsumerTips).
- Precautions when using ginger: Stomach upset and heartburn may occur with ginger, but it is generally safe. Use with caution if you have low blood sugar or diabetes, take blood-thinning medication, or are pregnant or about to have surgery (see Concerns and Cautions).