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Eur Rev Med Pharmacol Sci. 2015 Apr;19(7):1291-6.

Can nausea and vomiting be treated with ginger extract?

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Department of Gastroenterology, Policlinico di Monza, Monza, Italy.


Ginger (Zingiber officinale) is a spice traditionally used to treat indigestion, nausea and vomiting. Ginger extracts accelerate gastric emptying and stimulate gastric antral contractions. These effects are mainly due to the presence of gingerols and shogaols and their activity on cholinergic M receptors and serotonergic 5-HT and 5-HT receptors. Various researches on this subject have led to controversial results, due to the chemical instability of ginger extracts and particularly of gingerols, which are readily-oxidizable substances. A systematic review of double-blind, placebo-controlled, randomized studies highlighted the potential efficacy of ginger on the prevention and treatment of nausea and vomiting of various origins, even though additional controlled studies are needed. This review focuses on pregnancy-induced nausea and vomiting and on chemotherapy induced nausea, and hypothesizes a therapeutic role for ginger extracts in case of side effects, as an alternative to traditional prokinetic drugs such as domperidone, levosulpiride or metoclopramide.

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