Ginger Essential Oil - Zingiber officinalis

6:52 AM Posted by jo

Ginger, Zingiber officinalis is a part of the Zingiberaceae family. It is also called Jamaican ginger or ginger root. The plant is three feet tall with yellow and purple flowers. The epidermal tissue of the rhizome is steam distilled to make the essential oil. It grows in China, Japan, India, Vietnam, West Africa, and Australia. 

Zingiber officinalis was used by the Romans and the Greeks. Ginger has been valued for its therapeutic properties, and Dioscorides recommended it for stomach concerns. Ginger has been used in Ayuredic medicine, and it is still used in Chinese medicine. 

The chemical constituents of ginger are:
  • The monoterpene, champene, myrcene, limonene and a-phellandrene . Monoterpenes are expectorant, bactericidal, analgesic, and stimulant. 
  • The oxide 1,8 cineole. Oxides are expectorants.
  • The sesquiterpene a-curcumene, zingiberene, and B-sesequiphellandrene . Sesquiterpenes are analgesic, antiseptic, anti-inflammatory, and spasmolytic. 

Ginger has a warm, pleasant, slightly citrus and fruity top note with a woody undertone. The middle note is spicy, peppery, sharp, warm and uplifting. It also has a more characteristic ginger aroma. Ginger is stimulating and warming, and it makes me concentrate better. The base note is sweet, slightly characteristic ginger, woody and more diffused. Ginger has some burned smoky scent. The final dry out note smells sweet several days later. 

Ginger is colorless and doesn't leave any stain on the blotter. It evaporates quickly and feels smooth.

Ginger clears my nose when I inhale it and it goes to my head. It's an euphoric and stimulating scent. It makes me happy smelling it. 


Ginger is a stimulating and grounding oil. It is said to help with memory. It has historically been very useful for digestive disorders, and according to Battaglia,  it has been used for nausea and vomiting. He also states it has traditionally been used for colds, sore throats, and coughs. According to Battaglia,  it has also been recommended for catarrhal conditions. He also recommends that a massage with ginger may be beneficial for fluid retention or rheumatism. 

According to the book,Essential Oils Integrative Medical Guide: Building Immunity, Increasing Longevity, and Enhancing Mental Performance With Therapeutic-Grade Essential Oils by Gary Young, ND, ginger may be used for alcoholism, arthritis, loss of appetite, respiratory infections, congestion, infectious disease, sinusitis, muscular aches/pain and sprains.

It blends well with:
Atlas cedarwood, bay, black pepper, cajuput, cinnamon, clove, eucalyptus, frankincense, geranium, lemon, lime, myrtle, nutmeg, orange, rosemary, peppermint, tangerine, tea tree, and thyme.

It is best to avoid ginger in pregnancy. Some experts recommend it for morning sickness, but to be on the safe side you're better off consulting with an expert before using it. Avoid ginger in gallstones. It may also cause skin irritation in sensitive individuals, so perform a skin patch test.

Before you leave:

I recommend that you always perform a skin patch test when you try a new oil.

Check out my safety page to make sure you are aware of any contrindications before you use essential oils. Some oils are not suitable when suffering from certain conditions. AlsoRead this Before You Start Using Essential oils. Some oils should not be applied prior to sun exposure so make sure you check this list before spending time in the sun.

Not sure how to apply the oils? Visit these pages to learn how to apply the oils:
If you're new to essential oils you might want to check out my Getting Started Guide. 


Johanna is an aromatherapist and she is passionate about educating people about health, essential oils, real food, natural remedies, and nutrition so they make healthier choices in their lives. 
Follow Johanna on twitter and facebook for more health tips and information.

  • Digg
  • StumbleUpon
  • Yahoo! Buzz
  • Technorati
  • Facebook
  • TwitThis
  • MySpace
  • LinkedIn
  • Live
  • Google
  • Reddit
  • Sphinn
  • Propeller
  • Slashdot
  • Netvibes