Ginger, scientifically known as Zingiber officinale, is a flowering plant that is closely related to turmeric and cardamom. The underground stem, or rhizome, of the ginger plant, is commonly known as the ginger root. It has been used in Ayurveda and traditional medicinal systems for thousands of years, improving health and well-being. Ginger has at least 115 constituents and at least 31 gingerol-related compounds. Out of these bioactive compounds, (6)-gingerol is the most abundant pungent compound giving ginger its known powerful therapeutic and preventive effects.
A staple in all Indian kitchens and cuisines for centuries now, ginger is a wonderful natural remedy for managing various diseases and infections. This condiment has been used in traditional medicine systems like Ayurveda and stood the test of time. In India especially, ginger is a household remedy for fighting colds and coughs due to its antimicrobial properties. But apart from these health benefits, using ginger for hair can also be quite beneficial. In one of the studies, regular ginger consumption has been shown to decrease the risk of developing hypertension as well as coronary heart disease (CHD).
Nutrient Content Of Ginger
Ginger is a good source of antioxidants, but it does not provide many vitamins, minerals and calories. The main vitamins found in ginger are vitamin C (ascorbic acid) and B9 (folate), but it also contains some minerals, such as potassium and magnesium.
Vitamin C is an important antioxidant found in ginger that aids in the development and health of many of the body's tissues, including the hair, skin, and bones. Another nutrient in ginger is B9, also known as folate, which is important not just for hair, but also for the metabolism of DNA, RNA, and proteins. Ginger's high magnesium levels make this herb important for healthy nerve and muscle function, while its high levels of potassium make it good for ensuring normal digestive function and muscle contraction.
Many active constituents that contribute to the useful spice properties of ginger are pungent phenol compounds, namely gingerols, shogaols, and zingerones. Raw ginger contains high concentrations of gingerols, while dried ginger exhibits slightly reduced levels of gingerols but abundant shogaols. When ginger is cooked, the gingerol levels are greatly decreased, as many are converted to zingerones. All three constituents have demonstrated anti-inflammatory, antiemetic, and anti-spasmodic properties; however, shogaols tend to be more potent than zingerones.
The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) considers ginger root to be generally safe with an approved daily intake recommendation of up to 4g.
Medicinal Benefits Of Using Ginger
Fights Fungal Infections
According to research studies, ginger can fight off various types of yeast infections, including those which occur on the scalp. Among other herbs, ginger showed the most potent fungal-fighting properties.
Fights Off Inflammation
Clinical studies have suggested that the therapeutic compounds in ginger can be used effectively to reduce swelling and pain. Some studies have also used ginger to treat osteoarthritis and rheumatism. Additionally, the above compounds are largely responsible for its antioxidant properties as well, proving to fight off free radicals from the environment which cause premature aging and cell damage.
Researchers are focused on the anticarcinogenic activities found in ginger including inducing apoptosis, preventing the cell cycle, and decreasing tumor proliferation. The effectiveness has been examined in a variety of cancer types such as lymphoma, colorectal cancer, and breast, skin, and liver cancer.
Ginger is commonly known to alleviate symptoms of nausea and vomiting. It is said to prevent seasickness, combat nausea related to chemotherapy, and nausea and vomiting during pregnancy. However, they need to be used with caution during pregnancy.
Regulates Blood Sugar
Ginger has shown good rates of glucose clearance in peripheral tissues which are responsive to insulin. This shows the glycemic-controlling properties of ginger.
Benefits Of Ginger For The Hair
Ginger is rich in Vitamin C and minerals, which help naturally relieve the irritation in the scalp. It also aids in fighting scalp infections, if any. Ginger causes the scalp to feel refreshed and healthy due to several protective nutrients.
Improves Hair Growth
Blood circulation is vital for hair growth. Ginger juice benefits hair by improving blood circulation. It also stimulates hair growth by strengthening the roots of the hair follicles. Ginger’s active ingredients cause warming and stimulating sensations when applied to the scalp, thereby increasing blood circulation and encouraging healthy hair growth.
The antiseptic and antimicrobial properties benefit the scalp by keeping it clean and healthy, thus keeping dandruff at bay. The antiseptic and antimicrobial properties help control dandruff, soothe the scalp, and prevent itchiness and scratching which can damage the hair cuticle. Additionally, removing the dead skin cells (dandruff) that clog the follicles helps prevent hair fall.
Prevents Early (Premature) Hair Greying
Ginger juice for hair prevents early greying due to its antioxidant property. Ginger contains the antioxidant gingerol, which helps to fight free radicals. Free radicals can cause hair cell damage which causes hair greying and shedding.
Makes Hair Smooth and Silky
Ginger contains natural active compounds which act as natural conditioners imparting a natural shine to the hair locks and preventing hair from becoming dry and brittle.
Prevents Hair Fall
Ginger's goodness of minerals, fatty acids, vitamins, and minerals allows hair to flourish. It helps in strengthening the root and prevents hair loss. Ginger is rich in potassium, manganese, and vitamin b6 which provides your hair follicles with nourishment, making them stronger and preventing hair loss. Ginger also contains essential fatty acids like linoleic acid which helps prevent your hair from thinning.
Ways Of Reaping Benefits Of Ginger For Hair
As Infused Ginger Oil
Add dried ginger to cold-pressed coconut oil and let it infuse under the sun for 2-3 weeks. Strain the oil and use the oil to massage your scalp. You can use this twice a week before shampoo to keep dandruff under control.
As A Ginger Hair Mask
Mix ginger puree with cold-pressed jojoba oil and apply it all over your scalp and hair. Leave it on for at least 30 minutes before rinsing it off with a mild shampoo. Use this hair mask once a week until the condition improves.
In The Form Of Ginger Oil
Dilute the ginger essential oil with cold-pressed coconut oil and use it as a hair oil to soothe your scalp and control infections. It is always advisable not to use more than 1% concentration of essential oils in a concoction to avoid skin irritations and adverse effects.
As Ginger Roots Paste
This requires grinding the ginger root into a paste by peeling the outer covering and blending it with some water. Apply the paste onto the scalp. Rest it for 20 minutes by wrapping the hair with a shower cap or a towel. It will help to keep it moist. Wash hair with mild shampoo to get better results.
As Ginger Shampoo
Ginger shampoo or a cleanser is advisable for oil-free treatment. It removes dandruff from your hair, thus keeping the scalp oil-free.
Ginger Juice Treatment
This spice is packed with antiseptic and antifungal properties, and using ginger extract is very beneficial in getting rid of even the most stubborn dandruff. Ginger juice improves blood circulation and regulates the pH level. Ginger juice can be extracted by blending it and straining out the liquid with a muslin cloth. The juice can then be applied as a spot treatment for scaly patches and dandruff with the help of a cotton ball. You can also mix this juice with other potent ingredients like lemon juice to increase the efficiency of the treatment.
Ginger Hair Rinse
Combining ginger juice with various hair rinses such as rice water or apple cider vinegar can help control dandruff recurrence while retaining the natural shine and smoothness of the hair strands.
Ginger supplements are available in teas, capsules, and tablets. When taking ginger by mouth, follow all product instructions carefully and discontinue if any gastrointestinal side effects occur.
Below mentioned are a few of the ways for preparing ginger formulations at home :
Ginger Hair Growth Mask
You will need:
- A tablespoon of ginger powder
- A tablespoon of jojoba oil
- Mix the ingredients till they reach a uniform consistency to make a hair mask.
- Gently massage it into your hair and the scalp in circular motions.
- Leave it on for about 30 minutes.
- Rinse your hair using a mild shampoo. Condition your hair as usual.
Ginger Hair Mask for Dandruff
You will need:
- Two tablespoons of ginger powder
- Two tablespoons of olive oil
- 3-4 drops of peppermint essential oil
- A few drops of lemon
- Combine the ginger powder, peppermint essential oil, lemon juice, and olive oil together. Mix it to form a consistent paste.
- Gently massage it into your hair and wear a shower cap.
- Let the hair mask sit for about 15 to 25 minutes.
- Rinse the hair mask out of your hair and follow your usual hair routine.
Ginger Skin & Hair Tea
You will need:
- A tablespoon of ginger powder
- A tablespoon of fresh lemon juice
- A tablespoon of honey
- Two cups of water
- Put the water to heat and add the ginger powder to it. Let it boil for about 10 minutes.
- Allow the herbal tea to cool, and stir in the honey and the lemon juice.
- Drink the concoction for glowing skin and healthy hair.
Ginger is a versatile spice and its properties have wonderful benefits for overall health as well as for hair. Intake beyond the recommended dosage in daily diet can lead to several gut-related complaints, hence it is recommended to include ginger as a spice, only in moderation. However, to get the best results from such ingredients, one must understand the method that is most suitable for them, as knowing and understanding the condition of scalp and hair health is necessary. One needs to undergo a hair assessment so that a medical professional can prescribe an appropriate treatment plan for dealing with scalp and hair loss concerns. Check out Traya’s FREE hair test, which helps you with a detailed assessment and understanding of your hair loss and its root causes, so that you are recommended the treatment which is personalized so that it works more effectively on your concerns. Hair loss can be complex, hence identifying causative factors is useful for choosing the apt treatment.
Q1 - Is Ginger Good For Hair?
Ans - Ginger is useful for its antifungal properties in helping to prevent the recurrence of dandruff and to maintain scalp hygiene.
Q2 - How To Use Ginger For Hair Growth?
Ans - Ginger can be in various ways in which ginger can be used such as hair rinses, ginger hair oil, hair masks, ginger shampoos, ginger teas, etc.
Q3 - Can I Leave Ginger On My Hair Overnight?
Ans - It's best to wash off fresh ginger formulations from the scalp within 30 minutes to 1 hr and not recommended to leave overnight since it can cause irritation.