Health Guide


What is it?

Ginger is an herbal medicine used to treat upset stomach, nausea, vomiting, osteoarthritis, and motion sickness.

Other names for ginger include: Zingiber officinale .

Ask your doctor, nurse, or pharmacist if you need more information about this medicine or if any information in this leaflet concerns you.

Before Using:

Tell your doctor if you

  • are taking medicine or are allergic to any medicine (prescription or over-the-counter (OTC) or dietary supplement)
  • are pregnant or plan to become pregnant while using this medicine
  • are breastfeeding
  • have a bleeding disorder or gallstones
  • have any other health problems, such as high blood pressure or heart or blood vessel disease


Talk with your doctor, pharmacist, or nurse about how much ginger you should take. The amount depends on the strength of the medicine and the reason you are taking ginger. If you are using this medicine without instructions from your caregiver, follow the directions on the medicine bottle. Do not take more ginger or take it more often than what is written on the directions.

To store this medicine:

Keep all medicine locked up and away from children. Store medicine away from heat and direct light. Do not store your medicine in the bathroom, near the kitchen sink, or in other damp places. Heat or moisture may cause the medicine to break down and not work the way it should work. Throw away medicine that is out of date or that you do not need. Never share your medicine with others.

Drug and Food Interactions:

Do not take ginger without talking to your doctor first if you are taking:

  • Blood thinning medicines (examples: aspirin; clopidogrel (Plavix(R)); phenprocoumon (Liquamar(R)); ticlopidine (Ticlid(R)); warfarin (Coumadin(R)); enoxaparin (Lovenox(R)))


  • Before taking ginger, tell your doctor if you are pregnant or breastfeeding.
  • Large amounts of ginger should not be taken in pregnancy.
  • Do not use ginger without first talking to your caregiver, if you have gallstones or a bleeding disorder.

Side Effects:

Stop taking your medicine right away and talk to your doctor if you have any of the following side effects.

  • Allergic reaction: Itching or hives, swelling in your face or hands, swelling or tingling in your mouth or throat, chest tightness, trouble breathing, or rash.

Other Side Effects:

You may have the following side effects, but this medicine may also cause other side effects. Tell your doctor if you have side effects that you think are caused by this medicine.

  • Gas, bloating, and heartburn. These symptoms can lead to a stomach ulcer over a long period of time and if a large amount of ginger is used.


1. Arfeen Z, Owen H, Plummer JL et al: A double-blind randomized controlled trial of ginger for the prevention of postoperative nausea and vomiting. Anaesth Intensive Care 1995; 23(4): 449-452.

2. Blumenthal M, Busse WR, Goldberg A et al (eds): The Complete German Commission E Monographs: Therapeutic Guide to Herbal Medicines. American Botanical Council, Austin, TX; 1998.

3. Bordia A, Verma SK & Srivastava KC: Effect of ginger (Zingiber officinale Rosc.) and fenugreek (Trigonella foenumgraecum L.) on blood lipids, blood sugar and platelet aggregation in patients with coronary heart disease. Prostaglandins Leukot Essent Fatty Acids 1997; 56(5):379-384.

4. McGuffin M, Hobbs C, Upton R et al: Botanical Safety Handbook. CRC Press, Boca Raton, FL; 1997.

5. Norred CL & Brinker F: Potential coagulation effects of preoperative complementary and alternative medicines. Alt Ther 2001; 7(6):58-67.

6. Pace JC: Oral ingestion of encapsulated ginger and reported self-care actions for the relief of chemotherapy-associated nausea and vomiting. Diss Abstr Intl 1987; 47:3297.

7. Schmid R, Schick T, Steffen R et al: Comparison of seven commonly used agents for prophylaxis of seasickness. J Trav el Med 1994; 1(4):203-206.

8. Vutyavanich T, Kraisarin T & Ruangsri R: Ginger for nausea and vomiting in pregnancy: randomized, double-masked, placebo-controlled trial. Obstet Gynecol 2001; 97(4):577-582.

9. Kruth P, Brosi E, Fux R et al: Ginger-associated overanticoagulation by phenprocoumon. Ann Pharmacother 2004; 38:257-259.

Last Updated: 7/4/2018
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