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Ginger Proves Effective at Fighting Nausea Following Cancer Treatment

Wednesday, August 26, 2009 at 06:11 PM EDT

A new study suggests that ginger is an effective all-natural solution for treating nausea and vomiting following cancer treatment.

Chemotherapy is a treatment process that often comes with a variety of side effects. Nausea is one of the most common of these side effects, with as many as 70 percent of all chemotherapy patients complaining about the symptom.

Standard anti-nausea medicine has been available to combat queasiness for quite some time. However, these drugs are more effective at preventing vomiting than off-setting the actual feelings of nausea.

Ginger has been used as an herbal remedy for stomach problems for thousands of years. This fact led a team of researchers to investigate the effects of ginger capsules on chemotherapy patients. The study, which involved 614 participants and was based out of the University of Rochester Medical Center, yielded promising results. Patients given ginger capsules rated their level of nausea as half as severe when compared to patients who were given a placebo.

The ginger capsules were given three days before and three days after chemotherapy. Patients were instructed to take three capsules, twice daily. The dosage of each pill varied depending on the treatment group. Patients who received lower doses of the herb – 0.5 gram and 1 gram a day – reported the lowest levels of nausea.

All patients taking place in the study were also given traditional anti-vomiting drugs.

The team of researchers is impressed with the findings. Especially since the benefits of ginger appear to come with absolutely zero side effects. Though earlier studies had suggested that ginger might cause blood thinning, the University of Rochester study found no such relationship.