Ginger is a popular spice used in cooking and baking and is best known for helping to relieve nausea, motion sickness and stomach pain. Many people believe that in order to get the best benefits from ginger they should be using raw root ginger. So is fresh ginger better than ground ginger? The answer is no.
Ground ginger contains some different medicinal benefits than raw ginger root. The process of creating ground ginger reduces the amount of gingerol it contains. Gingerol is the active component of root ginger that provides many medicinal health properties. However, although the dehydration process decreases gingerol it also increases levels of the compound shogaol. Shogaols are believed to have many health benefits and properties that root ginger does exhibit, especially those of memory and cognitive enhancing properties. So dried ginger if offering benefits from both gingerol and shogaol.
Is fresh ginger better than ground ginger?
Here is one instance that the answer may be yes. If you are using a recipe that calls for fresh ginger you can use ground ginger as a substitute but they do not taste the same. Depending on the recipe and the desired taste, substitution may not be recommended. When substitution makes sense you can use approximately ½ teaspoon of ground ginger in place of 1 tablespoon of fresh grated ginger.
The other great benefit to ground ginger is that it is more convenient. It is easy to keep on hand and stays fresh much longer than ginger root. In addition to recipes, you might consider adding it to your smoothies, dressings, muffins and other baked goods. This is a great way to sneak in some extra nutrition and it might even help you remember why you have that string tied around you finger!