Zingiber officinale

Ginger belongs to the Gingerberaceae genus and family and is actually the rhizome of the plant called Zingiber officinale. Other plants in this family include cardamom, turmeric and galangal. It is used as a spice in culinary as well as a medication primarily for its digestive properties. The plant was first cultivated in South Asia and later introduced in the eastern regions of Africa as well as the Caribbean. The essential oil obtained from this plant is extracted from its rhizomes or roots.

The essential oil obtained from ginger roots is popular in the West for its ability to help in digestion and currently it finds place in the British Herbal Pharmacoepia owing to its effectiveness in treating flatulent intestinal colic. Freshly obtained ginger oil is said to be non-noxious and the Chinese use it as a medication to treat cold as well as most conditions, including mucous and diarrhea. In addition, ginger oil is also effective in treating toothaches, malaria, rheumatism and bacterial dysentery. When used as massage oil, ginger essential oil provides warmth to the skin. Hence, it is not surprising that ginger oil has traditionally been used to provide comfort to the body in the cold climates.

In fact, ginger essential oil is available in different varieties. The chemicals enclosed in a specific variety of ginger oil are conditional on the place where it is produced. In addition, even the color of ginger essential oil actually varies to some extent depending on the place of its production. For instance, ginger oil produced in Africa usually has a darker hue. Many people often confuse ginger (Zingiber officinale) with galangal (Alpina officinarum). Although both these species belong to the same genus and family (Gingerberaceae), they are basically different species. Especially, galangal does not enclose the properties of the essential oil extracted from ginger. In order to differentiate ginger from other things known by the same name, it is often called ginger root or the Chinese ginger.

The color of ginger essential oil varies from pale yellow to profound amber hue. It is a thick liquid whose viscosity differs from average to watery. The essential oil obtained from the ginger roots possesses a potent, zesty, pungent, peppery and warm fragrance that resembles the smell of real ginger. This oil has the capability to set off as well as reinstate self-determination or freewill.

Chemical analysis of ginger essential oil has revealed that it encloses substances like gingerone, zingiberine, gingerin and gingenol. The fragrance of this oil is warm and fiery. It is also used for making perfumes.

Ginger essential oil possesses several therapeutic properties and is used to treat different conditions. Ginger essential oil is antiseptic, laxative, stimulant, aphrodisiac as well as tonic. This oil is frequently combined with other essential oils to produce several different blends to treat different conditions. Precisely speaking, ginger works excellently when it is combined with atlas cedarwood, frankincense, blue gum eucalyptus, lime, lemon, rose, Roman chamomile, rosemary, vetiver as well as sandalwood essential oils.

Both ginger root as well as ginger essential oil has been used for a variety of purposes by people of dissimilar cultures since time immemorial. Ginger root has basically been used as a spice in culinary to add essence to foods. At the same time, it has also been used as a medication to prevent occurrence of malaria. In fact, apart from the ancient Indian medicine herbal Ayurveda, traditional Chinese medicine has also ginger in different medication to draw out phlegm from the respiratory contagions. In addition, the people in China also use ginger as well as ginger essential oil to fortify or reinforce the heart, treat rheumatism and to heal all conditions related to accumulation of excessive moisture in the body.

Ginger essential oil forms an important agent in the present day aromatherapy and is used to clean up moisture from runny noses. At the same time, aromatherapy with ginger oil also helps to get relief from aching throats and sinusitis. In addition, this oil is used to induce sweating when people are suffering from fevers and also effectively treats ailments that are caused due to dampness or presence of excessive moisture in the body. Ginger essential oil possesses several other therapeutic properties and is often used to perk up the digestive system. While this oil is recommended for children as a tonic to enhance their appetite, among the elderly and choosy eater, ginger is used to tone up as well as straighten out the digestive system. Ginger essential oil is also beneficial for women, especially during pregnancy. This oil is recommended for pregnant women to provide relief from the consequences of morning sickness. In addition, ginger essential oil is also used to treat travel sickness. Moreover, ginger may also be used in massages as well as a compress to provide relief from throbbing muscles, including muscle spasms and muscle cramps. This ginger essential oil is also beneficial for back aches and back sprains.

If you intend to use ginger essential oil for massage, it is important that you always use it with any base oil like avocado oil or wheat germ oil. Using the oil by itself may result in skin irritations, especially among people who have sensitive skins.

The essential oil obtained from ginger roots is extremely valuable for the health and fitness of the humans. In fact, ginger essential oil has become a very popular agent in aromatherapy owing to the multiple health benefits offered by it. This oil is well known for its unique aroma that is both strong and spicy.

Ginger essential oil is extremely effective in fighting against depression. In addition, the ability of this oil to provide relief from pain has also been established. Many people prefer ginger essential oil for its aphrodisiac as well as stimulant properties, which are said to enhance desire for sexual activities. On the other hand, the ginger herb is also extensively used for its ability to retain moisture. To a great extent, this characteristic of the herb facilitates in toning up the body.

As aforementioned, ginger essential oil is extracted from the ginger roots by a process known as steam distillation. On many occasions, ginger oil is used in combination with other essential oils. When ginger essential oil is combined with rosemary, geranium, sandalwood, eucalyptus and cedarwood essential oils, it can do wonderful things to make certain that one is fit and in the pink of health. Using such blended essential oils is especially good for our physical health. Several researches have established that ginger essential oil is very effective in treating conditions, such as flatulence, constipation, flu, arthritis, rheumatism and even poor blood circulation. In fact, the Chinese use large quantity of ginger for it is known to facilitate strengthening the heart. In aromatherapy, ginger essential oil is used to provide relief from tender throats.

In addition, ginger essential oil is also beneficial for alleviating hangovers as well as for promoting the appetite of children. In fact, it has a tonic characteristic. At the same time, in aromatherapy, ginger oil is also used to treat the symptoms of colds as well as heal bronchitis.

An oleo resin (a mixture of an essential oil and a resin) prepared from ginger essential oil is used in formulations that function as laxatives and medications to stimulate the digestive process. Ginger essential oil is also used by the cosmetics and perfumery manufacturers; especially the strong fragrance of this oil makes it an important ingredient in several oriental perfumes as well as in fragrances meant for men. As mentioned earlier, ginger essential oil has the property to retain moisture which helps it to maintain equilibrium of moisture in our body. Apart from being used in medicines and perfumes, ginger essential oils are also present in many foods, soft drinks and beverages.

General properties

  • antiseptic
  • stimulant
  • tonic

Blends well with

General uses


The health benefits offered by ginger essential oil notwithstanding, one needs to use it with precaution, as it is known to result in some adverse after-effects, especially when used in high concentrations. It is important that you should always dilute this essential oil with any suitable unadulterated cold-pressed vegetable oil before use. Ginger essential oil is known to possess hypertensive properties and, hence, it should not be used on individuals enduring high blood pressure or hypertension. This oil may also cause irritation of the skin in people having sensitive skin or suffering from eczema.

The essential oil obtained from ginger is said to be non-toxic as well as non-irritant, barring when used in high concentrations. Nevertheless, this oil may possibly be irritation to sensitive skins and also result in photosensitivity.


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