This is my third blog in recent weeks about my love affair with certain foods.  Avocados and coconut oil are the clear front runners and I would eat these foods every day if I could.  What is  holding me back is the belief that foods should be rotated to reduce the risk of allergic reactions.  The thought of an allergic reaction to avocado or coconut oil gives me a chill.

I guess that you are wondering why I almost love ginger and do not give it my unconditional love.  Let me clarify.  I love the pungent and slightly sweet flavor of the root in teas, soups, salads, and steamed vegetable dishes.  Where ginger loses a few points me is when its pungency is not muted by other flavors.  This often happens chewing on a small slice of ginger, which I do from time to time with an upper respiratory infection.

Ginger in my book is a super flavoring for steamed vegetables.   I know that we should be eating our veggies, but some are lackluster without an infusion of ginger flavor.  Steaming grated ginger for a few minutes in some vegetable broth and adding it to cooked vegetables makes a world of difference.  I even have grated fresh ginger in some in my homemade yellow pea soup for a unique flavor.

Another favorite is to grate fresh ginger with frozen wild blueberries or fresh blackberries, which perks them up, and along with nuts is a healthy and energizing  afternoon snack.  Nuts are added to provide the protein needed to help slow down the rush of sugar from the berries into our bloodstream.  Without the nuts, we are more apt to have a sugar rush followed by an energy slump as insulin tries to clear away the excess fruit sugar.  The fat in the nuts is also filling.

I especially love to play around with ginger when feeling sick with an upper respiratory infection, finding that it helps to reduce bronchial inflammation and makes breathing easier.  It is pungent, but for the greater good, and with time I am sure that I will grow more accustom to the taste.  You might and you might not, but there are so many versatile uses for fresh ginger so you have no worries.

I used to know very little about ginger and would buy it, store it on my kitchen counter, and find it dry and shriveled by week’s end.  But that does not have to be as long as it is stored in the refrigerator, which adds to the shelf life as much as up to three weeks.  Frozen ginger will last for many months at a time.  The other key is to make sure the ginger has a nice smooth surface and no signs of aging.  The flavor is lost with age as with any other food.  Be creative yourself with ginger and make it a regular part of your diet for its true health benefits.

“Let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food.”- Hippocrates

Photo- June Rousso