Ginger may reduce the level of pain brought on by exercise. Ginger has anti-inflammatory effects and has been used for centuries for many types of discomfort.
Two studies were performed at the University of Georgia. Volunteers in both studies took two grams of ginger or a placebo in capsule form for 11 days. On Day 8, they exercised their arms with heavy weights to the point of injury.
Their bodies' responses to these muscle injuries were assessed. The resultant data seems to indicate that the anti-inflammatory effects of taking ginger every day reduced the level of pain brought on by exercise by 25 percent.
"While ginger had been shown to exert anti-inflammatory effects in rodents, its effect on experimentally-induced human muscle pain was largely unexplored, said Patrick O'Connor, a professor in the College of Education's department of kinesiology. It was also believed that heating ginger, as occurs with cooking, might increase its pain-relieving effects."