Food & Wine

Eating ginger to dispel dampness in summer

Updated: 13 Aug 2009
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According to Chinese dietary therapy, ginger is a "warm" food that helps promote blood circulation and dispels pathogenic dampness and cold. It is also a popular health-helping food in summer.

There's a popular Chinese saying - "eating turnip in winter and ginger in summer, you need no doctors at all."

Though hot in summer, pathogenic cold-related ailments still happen to many people due to air-conditioning. That may include cold, diarrhea and sore backs and shoulders.

"Warm" ginger can help relieve the problems.

People shuttling between the cool indoors and the heat outside may easily catch cold even in summer.

Chewing a few ginger slices or taking a bowl of ginger and brown sugar soup can help dispel the invading pathogenic cold. Soaking feet in hot ginger soup with vinegar and salt can also help.

Repeated exposure to sharply different temperatures may also bring on digestive problems.

The digestive system is in a relatively vulnerable condition due to decreased gastric acid secretion in summer; sharply changing temperatures may aggravate the situation and cause problems such as vomiting, stomachache and diarrhea. Having some ginger or ginger soup can help prevent and relieve the problem.

Long-term exposure to air-conditioning may also cause sore shoulders and backs as pathogenic cold invades through the pores.

Soak a towel in hot ginger soup with some vinegar and salt, then apply the towel to the sore part and repeat several times.

This will help sooth the muscles, promote blood circulation and relieve pain.


SOURCE: Shanghai Daily


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