Ginger. Research suggests that high-dose ginger supplements may help lower high blood pressure. A review of 6 studies found that, when taken in doses of 3 grams or more per day for 8 weeks or fewer, ginger supplements significantly reduced blood pressure in people 50 years old and younger ( 42 ).
Ginger and Its Effect to Blood Pressure
Ginger is a spice commonly used in Asian and Indian cuisine. The thick roots of this herb have a spicy taste and a pungent aroma that add characteristic flavor to curries, Asian soups and stir fry dishes. Ginger may also offer health benefits as well, according to Michael Castleman, author of "The Healing Herbs." The chemical compounds in this herb may help reduce hypertension, or high blood pressure. Consult your doctor before using ginger to address high blood pressure. You should not use ginger in place of medical treatment for this serious condition.
Anticoagulants and Ginger
Although often referred to as "blood thinners," anticoagulants do not actually thin blood. They're often recommended for high blood pressure because they help to decrease the blood's ability to clot. High blood pressure increases your risk of blood clots, which can lead to heart disease and stroke. Ginger can also decrease blood clotting and may interact with anticoagulants such as warfarin, warns the University of Maryland Medical Center.
Calcium Channel Blockers and Ginger
Calcium channel blockers treat high blood pressure by inhibiting calcium from entering heart and blood vessels. In doing so, they relax blood vessels and help to decrease heart pumping strength. Some of these medications include amlodipine, diltiazem and verapamil. According to MedlinePlus, a website of the National Institutes of Health, ginger might also lower blood pressure in a way similar to calcium blockers, so taking them together may cause your blood pressure to drop to dangerously low levels or lead to an irregular heartbeat.
If you have hypertension and are being treated with medications such as anticoagulants and calcium channel blockers, do not take ginger without your doctor's advice. Other safer complementary therapies for blood pressure that you can try include the Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension diet, or DASH diet, which is low in salt, fat and refined carbohydrates and features fruits, vegetables, whole grains, fish, lean meat and low-fat dairy. You should also be exercising regularly most days of the week after getting the green light to exercise from your doctor.
If you are treating high blood pressure without medications under your doctor's guidance, ask for advice about taking ginger tea. If your doctor approves of using this herb, you should use fresh, raw ginger, as it contains more nutrients than powdered ginger. Also, liquid ginger extract is high in sugar, which is one of the foods you should be limiting when you have hypertension.
The chemical compounds in ginger may help lower overall blood cholesterol, as well as low density lipoproteins, which are components of cholesterol that can contribute to heart disease, according to Castleman. Cholesterol and low density lipoproteins can contribute to sticky plaque along the walls of your arteries and blood vessels. This creates blockages that can contribute to high blood pressure by restricting the inner diameter of blood vessels and arteries. Plaque may also reduce the elasticity of your arteries, further contributing to high blood pressure.
Fewer Blood Clots
Ginger may also decrease blood pressure by preventing blood clots from forming in your arteries and blood vessels, according to Castleman. Blood clots can restrict or prevent blood from flowing through your circulatory system, which can lead to hypertension. By preventing blood clots, ginger may also help prevent heart attacks and strokes.
Although ginger may be beneficial for treating hypertension, it may also produce side effects. According to Dr. James Balch and Phyllis Balch, authors of "Prescription for Nutritional Healing," consuming ginger root may cause nausea or stomach upset. You may also experience heartburn if you use this herb.
Helps Lower Blood Pressure Ginger has been shown to improve blood pressure (in conjunction with medication) by acting as a vasodilator—it expands your blood vessels. This is helpful for increasing circulation in the body, which reduces the overall blood pressure throughout the body.