Medicinal ginger use dates back at least 2,000 years, according to the experts at the University of Maryland Medical Center. A study published in the September 2006 issue of “Phytotherapy Research” used rats and mice to confirm that ginger does reduce inflammation, soothe pain and help regulate blood sugar. While there is no scientific evidence to suggest that you can detox with ginger, the belief persists. Drinking ginger lemon tea is one popular way to take ginger.
Slice off a small portion of fresh ginger root. A piece about the size of the first joint of your thumb is good for a mug of tea, but individual tastes vary.
Peel the ginger section and grate or finely chop it. Put the pieces in the bottom of a sturdy mug that holds 8 to 10 oz.
Fill the mug half to two thirds full of hot water. Pour the water in slowly to avoid sloshing the ginger pieces out of it. Let the tea steep for 10 to 15 minutes.
Add more hot water if you prefer your tea very hot. The enthusiasts at TheKitchn.com make their ginger lemon tea by boiling water in a pot, adding the cut ginger, a lemon wedge and its juice and some honey and letting it all simmer. This can turn a little bitter if you let it bubble too long, so don’t let it sit for more than a minute or two if you use that method.
Wash an organic lemon. You can use mass-produced lemons, but if you are trying to detox it makes sense to keep your ingredients as pure as possible. Slice a wedge out of the lemon about as thick as your thumb. Squeeze the lemon juice into the cup. You may have to play with the proportions of water, lemon and ginger to get the taste the way you like it.
Add a teaspoon or two of local organic honey, and stir it well. Do not use any kind of artificial sweetener, even plant-based ones. The point of a detox is to give your body a rest from all artificial ingredients.
Drink as much of this tea as you want, along with 64 oz. of filtered water, for an intense 24-hour detox. Or simply have one cup every morning and another every night to help your body’s natural detoxing system do its job. There is no evidence that consuming this tea will detox you in any way, but lemon juice is known to be high in vitamin C and to support liver health. Ginger is being prescribed for nausea and morning sickness, according to researchers at the University of Maryland Medical Center -- which would indicate that it does have some effect on the digestive system -- though more studies are needed to prove its effects.
Serve ginger lemon tea over ice with a sprig or two of fresh mint for a refreshing hot weather drink.
Never follow a rigid, extremely low-calorie ginger detox for more than 24 hours without consulting your physician.
- “Phytotherapy Research”; Analgesic, Antiinflammatory and Hypoglycaemic Effects of Ethanol Extract of Zingiber officinale (Roscoe) Rhizomes (Zingiberaceae) in Mice and Rats; JA Ojewole; September 2006
- University of Maryland Medical Center: Ginger
- The Kitchn: Recipe: Flu Season Ginger Honey Lemon Tonic
Emmy-award nominated screenwriter Brynne Chandler is a single mother of three who divides her time between professional research and varied cooking, fitness and home & gardening enterprises. A running enthusiast who regularly participates in San Francisco's Bay to Breakers run, Chandler works as an independent caterer, preparing healthy, nutritious meals for Phoenix area residents.