Ginger’s warming essential oil helps boost circulation and blood flow, which makes it a natural remedy for tired muscles. Therefore, to enjoy its muscle-soothing benefits you don't have to ingest ginger. Here Janine Acero, Food.news, reflects on the health benefits of a similar plant as ginger with medicinal qualities:
“Ginger is a popular spice renowned for its uses in food and medicine. Many studies support its health benefits, but little is known about its potent relative – galangal. Now scientists from India evaluated the physicochemical composition of the essential oil of Kaempferia galanga, commonly known as galangal or aromatic ginger. Their findings appeared in the Journal of Essential Oil Research.
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Galangal is a medicinal plant widely used in the preparation of both traditional and modern medicines around the world. This plant is widely cultivated throughout Southeast Asia, particularly in the regions of Indonesia, China, Cambodia, India and Taiwan. People describe galangal’s taste as citrusy and earthy at the same time, with a kick of spice.
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For their study, the team from India collected K. galanga germplasm from the southern states of Kerala and Karnataka and evaluated the samples for essential oil content and oil composition. They analyzed volatile oil isolated from rhizomes of K. galanga L. by hydrodistillation using gas chromatography (GC) and gas chromatography-mass spectrometry (GC/MS).
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The researchers identified 38 aroma compounds in the rhizome oil, representing 96.4 to 98.9 percent of total oil. The two major compounds identified were trans-ethyl-p-methoxycinnamate (28.4–70.0 percent) and trans-ethyl cinnamate (11.5–26.6 percent) which constituted 50.3 percent to 84.8 percent of total oil.
Other important chemical compounds present include:
- Delta-3-carene (0.1–6.5 percent)
- 1,8-cineole (0.2–5.2 percent)
- Borneol (1.0–2.4 percent)
- Pentadecane (6.0–16.5 percent)
The researchers found that trans-ethyl-p-methoxycinnamate and trans-ethyl cinnamate were the most vital constituents responsible for most of the medicinal properties of K. galanga L.
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Based on these findings, the researchers conclude that the promising accessions identified could be exploited for large-scale cultivation of K. galanga L. for obtaining higher yields of pharmacologically important constituents.
Medicinal properties and uses of aromatic ginger
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Galangal root is a low-calorie herb used by traditional healers to address indigestion, colds, and ringworm infections (fungal dermatitis), among others.”
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Read More … Article Source: https://food.news/2019-08-29-galangal-gingers-lesser-known-but-equally-potent-relative.html
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