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Can Ginger Reduce Blood Pressure & Soothe Arthritis?

Are you struggling with hypertension? You may be able to use ginger for a double-duty effect: reduce blood pressure and ease arthritis pain in joints.
Female healthcare worker checking the blood pressure of a senior woman during a home visit

As we add additional birthdays to life’s scorecard, we frequently start to notice more aches and pains. Arthritis can affect almost any joint in the body, and many people have problems with multiple joints. Other problems that creep up on us, beyond gray hair and wrinkles, may very well include elevated blood pressure. People with both arthritis and hypertension are in a bind, since the most common OTC and prescription drugs to manage joint pain can raise blood pressure and increase the risk for cardiovascular complications. NSAIDs like celecoxib, diclofenac, ibuprofen, meloxicam or naproxen increase the risk of repeat heart attacks. Wouldn’t it be great to find a natural treatment that could reduce blood pressure and ease arthritic joints at the same time? One reader wrote to tell us about such a solution.

Using Ginger to Reduce Blood Pressure and Soothe Arthritis Pain:

Q. I add sliced ginger to my coffee. It helps my arthritis and lowers my blood pressure as well. Can you tell us all about its many health benefits?

A. Not everyone would appreciate the flavor of ginger in coffee, although many people like it in tea. Ginger has been used for centuries to ease nausea, heartburn and other digestive difficulties.

Blood Vessels Benefit from Ginger:

In animal studies, ginger has shown cardiovascular benefits (Natural Product Research, Sep. 2018). It also can lower blood pressure and protect the blood vessels of aging humans (Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine, Aug. 20, 2019). Researchers have presented evidence that ginger can reduce blood pressure by blocking calcium channels (Journal of Cardiovascular Pharmacology, Jan. 2005). 

Ginger for Joint Pain:

Arthritis sufferers who couldn’t use NSAIDs for pain relief reported good results from highly standardized ginger extracts (Natural Product Research, June 2017). In addition to relief for their arthritis pain, these patients did not risk the gastrointestinal side effects of NSAIDs. Such drugs are notorious for irritating the stomach and small intestine and may cause ulcers. Sadly, few scientists have conducted well-designed and controlled studies on the use of ginger to soothe arthritis pain (JBI Library of Systematic Reviews, 2008).

Learn More About How to Reduce Blood Pressure:

You can learn all about these and further uses, along with the scientific references behind them, in our book, Spice Up Your Health: How Everyday Kitchen Herbs & Spices Can Lengthen & Strengthen Your Life. Ginger is just one of the many spices and herbs covered in the book. You can purchase it online or you can send a check for $19.95 ($15.95 plus $4 shipping and handling) to Graedon Enterprises; PO Box 52027; Durham, NC 27717-2027.

For more information about how to soothe arthritis pain with and without drugs, you may be interested in our eGuide to Alternatives for Arthritis. We also provide detailed information on how to reduce blood pressure in our eGuide to Blood Pressure Solutions

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About the Author
Terry Graedon, PhD, is a medical anthropologist and co-host of The People’s Pharmacy radio show, co-author of The People’s Pharmacy syndicated newspaper columns and numerous books, and co-founder of The People’s Pharmacy website. Terry taught in the Duke University School of Nursing and was an adjunct assistant professor in the Department of Anthropology. She is a Fellow of the Society of Applied Anthropology. Terry is one of the country's leading authorities on the science behind folk remedies. .
Spice Up Your Health: How Everyday Kitchen Herbs & Spices Can Lengthen & Strengthen Your Life
$15.95

Learn about the latest research on the surprising health benefits of herbs and spices. Find out how to make home remedies with spices that can help with common health problems.

Spice Up Your Health: How Everyday Kitchen Herbs & Spices Can Lengthen & Strengthen Your Life
Citations
  • Leoni A et al, "Ayurvedic preparation of Zingiber officinale Roscoe: effects on cardiac and on smooth muscle parameters." Natural Product Research, Sep. 2018. DOI: 10.1080/14786419.2017.1367779
  • Mohd Sahardi NFN & Makpol S, "Ginger (Zingiber officinale Roscoe) in the prevention of ageing and degenerative diseases: Review of current evidence." Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine, Aug. 20, 2019. DOI: 10.1155/2019/5054395
  • Ghayur MN & Gilani AH, "Ginger lowers blood pressure through blockade of voltage-dependent calcium channels." Journal of Cardiovascular Pharmacology, Jan. 2005. DOI: 10.1097/00005344-200501000-00013
  • Rondanelli M et al, "The effect and safety of highly standardized Ginger (Zingiber officinale) and Echinacea (Echinacea angustifolia) extract supplementation on inflammation and chronic pain in NSAIDs poor responders. A pilot study in subjects with knee arthrosis." Natural Product Research, June 2017. DOI: 10.1080/14786419.2016.1236097
  • Leach MJ & Kumar S, "The clinical effectiveness of Ginger (Zingiber Officinale) in adults with osteoarthritis." JBI Library of Systematic Reviews, 2008. DOI: 10.11124/01938924-200806080-00001
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Ginger definitely helped my arthritis. One finger suddenly became so sore and stiff upon waking in the morning that bending it was extremely painful. Taking 2 ginger capsules am and pm stopped that, and now that finger is fine.

Sounds easy to try!

Ginger is an attractive possibility for these problems but you don’t say how much, in what form, etc. Thanks for the idea but it’s not very helpful without those specifics.

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