Using Ginger to Help Relieve Morning Sickness and Nausea Review – Does it Work?

4 out of 5 leaves

4 out of 5 leaves

Ginger is a sub-tropical plant that grows bulbous rhizomes as part of its root system.  These ginger root bulbs are harvested and commonly used as a spice, or in traditional medicines.  Many cultures use various preparations of ginger to help fight the flu, the common cold, coughing fits, sore throats, or headaches.  In the United States, ginger is often recommended to calm an upset stomach, especially due to morning sickness.  But is ginger an effective cure against morning sickness and nausea?

The Good

  • Better for You – Ginger is a heathy food with lots of health benefits beyond anti-nausea
  • Saves Money – Fresh ginger is very inexpensive to buy: usually sold by weight.  You can get a large chunk of it for less than a dollar.
  • Proven to work against several ailments, including morning sickness, motion sickness, arthritis, and some cancers.

The Bad

  • The flavor can be very strong, even spicy hot

My Experience

Candied ginger, ground ginger powder, and fresh ginger root.

When I was a child we never had soda pop in the house.  The only time we were allowed to drink it was when we were sick and throwing up.  Then my dad would make a special trip to the store to pick up some Vernors (real ginger ale – any Midwesterners know what I’m talking about?).  As I kid I developed an aversion to ginger ale because it always reminded me of being sick.  As an adult, I’ve realized that my dad was trying to get ginger into our tummies to help with the nausea.

This summer with my third pregnancy, nausea and vomiting became a regular part of my life again. My first trimester was a rough one. With past pregnancies I had morning sickness in the morning or in the evening, but with this one I was sick all. day. long. As I started losing weight (a first for me with any pregnancy) I knew I would have to try something different in order to get some food to stay in.

One of the natural remedies I turned to was ginger.  The first thing I tried was candied ginger, which I picked up at the same time as the dried papaya I was trying out as well.  I tried sucking on the candied ginger when my tummy was upset, but found it way too spicy to keep in my mouth for a long time.  Chewing it up and swallowing fast still left enough flavor in my mouth to bother me for a long time, and I didn’t feel like my tummy was any better.  I imagine, however, that if you can stand, or even enjoy the spiciness of fresh ginger, then this preparation might work well for you.

I tried making some ginger tea out of water and a small amount of ginger powder.  It helped with the nausea but I much preferred the anti-nausea peppermint tea over ginger tea in the morning, and stuck with that.  I have a friend who told me she found that slicing some raw ginger thin and steeping in hot water to make an infusion was really effective for her.

In the end I turned back to good old ginger ale to settle my tummy.  I’ve never seen any Vernors in California, and I’m not sure how much ginger it actually has in it any more, so I found a natural brand instead.  I ensured that the ingredients were pretty much water, ginger and sugar (not HFCS).  The ginger ale worked really well to soothe my tummy, and I drank it when I was in the mood for a cold, fizzy drink instead of hot tea.

You can find all natural ginger ale at many natural foods stores.  One watch-out though – most of the real stuff comes in dark amber glass, looking a lot like bottles of beer.  You may want to pour it into a different cup to avoid those curious glances at work!  Or if you’re feeling really up to it (during your first trimester – yeah, right!!) you could make your own ginger ale.  Here’s a recipe from one of my favorite chefs.

 Overall, ginger wasn’t my favorite upset tummy soother, but it came in a close second.  It was nice to have a cold beverage that could help me feel better on a hot summer day.  And if I liked the taste of ginger better, I’m sure the candies would have been more effective.  If ginger hasn’t worked for you, check out my other reviews of peppermint and papaya – maybe one of those will do the trick instead!

Have you ever used ginger for an upset tummy or morning sickness?  What’s your favorite preparation?

PS – You know I’m not a doctor, right?  This information is based on my experience only and is not intended to diagnose or treat any medical condition.  Your experience may vary, even from one pregnancy to the next.  Please remember to speak with your healthcare professional about any medical concerns you have, and follow their recommended course of treatment. You can read additional fine print details here.

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13 Responses to Using Ginger to Help Relieve Morning Sickness and Nausea Review – Does it Work?

  1. Becky says:

    I lived on ginger ale in my first trimester. It was the only thing that kept me upright all day.

  2. dep31 says:

    For my first three children, I ate pickled ginger (the kind you get in sushi restaurants) by the jarful. And it did help. I ate candied ginger, but I’m not fond of it. Ginger tea is WAY too hot for me. By this time around, (child #4), I’m so SICK of ginger that I can’t even get ginger ale down. At least I’m finally at week 12, and am starting to feel human again! DH and I were sad when the OB told us that this must be the last one; medical issues make a fifth too dangerous. However, given that I’ve been SO sick this time, it’s been a little relieving as well!

  3. Carol says:

    Oh, I remember Vernors– growing up in Michigan.

    I like to add a piece of raw ginger to soup stock that I am making. I put ginger, garlic, soup bones (usually chicken bones) a carrot, stalk of celery with a teaspoon of lemon juice (to draw calcium from the bones) in a pot of water. It simmers for a full day to produce a healthy stock — a broth for soups in the cold & flu season.

    Glad you are feeling better!

  4. I used ginger so much in my first pregnancy that I’ve had an aversion to it ever since!

  5. Nancy says:

    I have a small jar of crystallized ginger for when my stomach is upset and it works very well. Thanks for sharing at RT this week. xo

  6. This was so interesting! I was always given ginger ale when I had an upset tummy when I was little too! I still like ginger ale to help calm a tricky tummy, but now I’m older I find that I enjoy it in a tea as well.

  7. Pingback: Peppermint to Help Relieve Morning Sickness and Nausea Review – Does it Work? | Green Idea Reviews

  8. Pingback: Eating Papaya to Help Morning Sickness and Nausea Review – Does it Work? | Green Idea Reviews

  9. tina says:

    I am 3 months with my 4th child i have 24hr sickness food is not nice to me i cant find anything thats helps. So tired of gettin sick