Ginger and lemongrass are two herbs you can use to brew tea with several possible health benefits. Research on animals and in petri dishes has shown ginger and lemongrass may have the potential to lower your risk of chronic diseases, including cancer, but these effects have not been verified in humans. Both herbs have anti-inflammatory properties, and ginger has been found to reduce appetite. Consult your doctor before drinking ginger and lemongrass tea if you're pregnant, breastfeeding, taking medications or taking other herbs.
Both ginger and lemongrass are anti-inflammatory herbs. An article published in the "Journal of Medicinal Food" in 2005 notes that ginger shares the same properties as nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory pharmaceutical drugs but has been found to be more effective and have fewer side effects. A study published in "Microcirculation" in 2010 showed that a compound called citral found in lemongrass inhibits the formation of acid that causes inflammation. In the study, scientists administered lemongrass to mice with inflammatory bowel disease and found that it reduced their inflammation both in the short term, after two weeks, and in the long term, after six months.
Protection With Antioxidants
A study published in the "Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry" in 2005 found that lemongrass contains antioxidants. Antioxidants work by eliminating free radicals in the body, and consuming antioxidant-rich foods and herbs regularly can lower your risk of developing several chronic diseases. A study published in 2002 found that ginger has a very high antioxidant content compared with other plants. In a 2008 study published in "Fitoterapia," ginger was found to protect against alcohol-related liver toxicity in rats due its antioxidant qualities.
Weight Loss Efforts
In a study published in the "Journal of Ethnopharmacology" in 2007, rats were administered a dose of lemongrass extract every day. After six weeks, they had lowered glucose levels, total cholesterol, triglycerides, the bad LDL and VLDL cholesterol levels, and increased levels of good HDL cholesterol. The effects of lemongrass tea on the lipid profile of humans are still unknown. Ginger has been shown to reduce appetite, which could play a role in helping you achieve weight loss goals. In a 2012 study published in "Metabolism," ginger lowered food intake and feelings of hunger while increasing feelings of fullness in men who consumed it, in comparison to the control group that did not.
Possible Cancer Prevention
In a study published in "Cancer Letters" in 2002, rats were administered a carcinogenic chemical called diethylnitrosamine to induce cancer. They were then given lemongrass daily for 10 weeks, and it was found to reduce the number of early phase cancer-caused lesions and reduce DNA damage. However, the effects of lemongrass on cancer in humans and its ability to prevent cancer hasn't been verified. In vitro, a component of ginger was found to suppress the growth of secondary tumors caused by pancreas, kidney, skin and lung cancers.
Is This an Emergency?
- Journal of Medicinal Food: Ginger - An Herbal Medicinal Product With Broad Anti-Inflammatory Actions
- Microcirculation: Lemon Grass (Cymbopogon Citratus) Ameliorates Murine Spontaneous Ileitis by Decreasing Lymphocyte Recruitment to the Inflamed Intestine
- Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry: Free Radical Scavengers and Antioxidants From Lemongrass
- The Journal of Nutrition: A Systematic Screening of Total Antioxidants in Dietary Plants
- Fitoterapia: Ethanol Toxicity - Rehabilitation of Hepatic Antioxidant Defense System With Dietary Ginger
- Journal of Ethnopharmacology: Hypoglycemic and Hypolipidemic Effects of Fresh Leaf Aqueous Extract of Cymbopogon Citratus Stapf. in Rats
- Metabolism: Ginger Consumption Enhances the Thermic Effect of Food and Promotes Feelings of Satiety Without Affecting Metabolic and Hormonal Parameters in Overweight Men - A Pilot Study
- Cancer Letters: Inhibitory Effects of Lemongrass (Cymbopogon Citratus, Stapf) Extract on the Early Phase of Hepatocarcinogenesis After Initiation With Diethylnitrosamine in Male Fischer 344 Rats
- Cancer Research: Zerumbone Down-Regulates Chemokine Receptor CXCR4 Expression Leading to Inhibition of CXCL12-induced Invasion of Breast and Pancreatic Tumor Cells
- University of Maryland: Ginger