Life Extension Magazine®
Whole and grated ginger with joint-pain relief properties

Issue: Apr 2018


A staple of Eastern cuisine for hundreds of years, ginger can ease arthritis pain and inflammation, fight certain kinds of cancer, and suppress obesity.

By Garry Messick.

Although mainly associated in the West with sugary snacks such as gingerbread, ginger snaps, and ginger ale, ginger has been a staple of Eastern cuisine and traditional medicines for hundreds of years.

What you need to know

Recent peer-reviewed literature shows that ginger can provide many rewards to your health, including reducing joint pain and fighting obesity.

As used in foods and beverages, ginger is the root of a flowering plant that originated in Southern Asia, and was one of the first spices exported from that region to Europe.

Studies have established a number of significant health benefits that can be derived from ginger in the form of supplements and extracts. A few examples follow.

Cancer Prevention

Research has found that ginger fights certain types of cancer. A study found that ginger can help treat ovarian cancer by destroying cancer cells through apoptosis or programmed cell death.1

Fights Obesity

Research suggests ginger, through a polyphenol it contains called gingerenone A, helps suppress obesity and inflammation of fat tissues.2 In another study, ginger was considered alongside orlistat, a medication used for treating obesity. Results showed that, in rats fed a high-fat diet, ginger compared favorably against orlistat for reducing body weight and improving lipid profiles.3

Joint-Pain Relief

A human study showed ginger oil self-massaged into afflicted knees by osteoarthritis sufferers led to significant pain reduction.4 The study authors recommend this practice as a complementary method to standard medical treatment.


  1. Cancer Research. 2006;66(8 Supplement):1058-.
  2. Mol Nutr Food Res. 2017;61(10).
  3. Eur Rev Med Pharmacol Sci. 2013;17(1):75-83.
  4. Res Theory Nurs Pract. 2017;31(4):379-92.