By Alex Eriksson
Black ginger (Kaempferia Parviflora), also called Krachai Dum or Thai ginseng, is a medicinal root originating in Thailand.
It has been traditionally used as a natural energy enhancer and male sexual tonic for many centuries. Kaempferia Parviflora is part of the Zingiberaceae (ginger) family. It looks exactly the same as the common ginger, only it has a dark purple core. In addition to common supplement forms such as pills and capsules, black ginger is also made into tea and wine.
Black Ginger and Bodybuilding
Black ginger helps boost your performance in the gym in various ways: by improving energy expenditure , reducing inflammation, and promoting nitric oxide production.
It increases energy production by activating AMP-activated protein kinase (AMPK) in the skeletal muscles, much in the same way that caffeine does. AMPK is an enzyme that increases calorie burning rate in the muscle cells and stimulates brown adipose tissue (BAT), a beneficial kind of fat mass that also helps improve energy production.
The compounds in black ginger that boost energy expenditure are also helpful for enhancing body composition and eliminating excess fat around the waist. Increased energy expenditure is preventative of diabetes, obesity, and other conditions, as well.
Black ginger has been shown to possess anti-inflammatory properties that are even more potent than the common ginger. It contains methoxyluteolin, a natural molecule that inhibits the mast cells from initiating inflammation.
Higher energy levels and reduced inflammation result in better physical performance and muscle endurance, as supported by several clinical studies. This will help you accomplish more challenging workouts and build more muscle .
Moreover, black ginger helps keep your performance at peak levels by stimulating production of nitric oxide . This natural gas dilates the blood vessels and promotes nutrient delivery and blood flow to the muscle cells.
During exercise, blood flow to muscle fibers and cardiac output increases. As a result, your muscles become depleted of oxygen. Due to lack of oxygen, your body begins to release lactic acid which eventually leads to muscle fatigue.
Promoting nitric oxide production will result in an increase in oxygen and nutrients in the muscles and a reduction in lactic acid production. This will enable you to exercise for longer periods before exhaustion. Nitric oxide is also shown to help increase the cell’s glucose uptake and remove exercise-generated ammonia.
With the combination of these mechanisms, black ginger is sure to help you achieve optimal results in the gym and ultimately achieve the great-looking bod you’ve been working hard for.
Black Ginger and Sexual Function
Aside from being a potent energy enhancer, Kaempferia Parviflora is also widely known for being a natural and effective libido enhancer. It boosts sexual function by inhibiting phosphodiesterase-5 (PDE-5) and increasing dopamine levels.
The presence of PDE-5 inhibitors increases nitric oxide availability in the penis, which results in harder, longer-lasting erections.
On the other hand, dopamine, the “feel-good” neurotransmitters in the brain, is essential for maintaining a healthy libido. Black ginger is also used as a natural treatment for erectile dysfunction.
While pharmaceutical PDE-5 inhibitors such as Cialis and Viagra are more powerful than black ginger, they come with many undesirable side effects including back pain, flushing, dizziness, vision disturbances, dyspepsia, nasal congestion, migraines, and priapism (painful erection that lasts for hours). Black ginger, on the other hand, is free of negative side effects.
Black ginger can also be used by women to increase libido and improve fertility. It must be taken daily for 2-3 months to see good results.
Other Benefits of Black Ginger
Black ginger has been shown to possess a wide array of pharmacological effects beyond helping you build muscle and improving sexual function. Some of its most notable health benefits are listed below.
1. A powerful antioxidant
Black ginger is rich in various polymethoxyflavones. These are powerful antioxidants that aren’t common in other plants. Antioxidants are important in fighting free radicals in the body to reduce oxidative stress. This will in turn delay aging and make you look healthier and more youthful. It will also help prevent the development of various degenerative diseases including cancers.
2. Boosts brain function
Parkinson’s, Alzheimer’s, and other neurogenerative diseases have been associated with oxidative stress and chronic inflammation. Being a potent antioxidant and anti-inflammatory, black ginger significantly helps in enhancing brain health and cognitive performance and preventing brain-related diseases. It may also improve concentration and attention span.
Metabolic syndrome refers to a group of conditions that occur simultaneously, increasing risk of diabetes, stroke, and heart disease. It includes high blood sugar, high blood pressure, abnormal triglyceride or cholesterol levels, and excess belly fat . Black ginger helps prevent these risk factors by increasing energy expenditure and improving physical fitness.
4. Has antidepressant effects
Black ginger’s ability to boost dopamine levels also benefits your mood. Increased dopamine levels mean happier times and greater sense of wellbeing. It helps fight depressive illnesses and reduce anxiety attacks, and may also help promote better good night’s sleep. Black ginger can therefore be a natural alternative to drugs for people suffering from different psychological and mood issues.
Being an anti-diabetic and metabolic stimulant, black ginger is beneficial for treating allergies and allergy-related diseases, as evidenced by several animal and laboratory studies. Its active components for anti-allergic activity are 5-hydroxy-7,4'-dimethoxyflavone, 5-hydroxy-7-methoxyflavone, and 5-hydroxy-3,7,3',4'-tetramethoxyflavone.
Potential Side Effects
Black ginger does have a few minor side effects like increased body temperature and sweating. It does not negatively affect blood pressure or hormone levels.
It is, however, contraindicated if you have arrhythmia or abnormal heart rhythms as it can further trigger such episodes. It is best to consult your doctor first before taking this supplement.
How to Use
The Thai medicine institute recommends taking 1.2g of black ginger daily, as proven safe and effective from long years of traditional use. Kaempferia Parviflora root powder can be taken every day in of 1-1.5g (1000-1500mg) dosage to experience results. Follow instructions on the label for proper preparation.
Time has proven the numerous benefits of black ginger to our health. It naturally enhances physical performance and helps you build muscle without leaving any unfavorable side effects. As a bonus, it also boosts your performance in bed.
When taken in conjunction with proper nutrition and persistent workout, Thai black ginger help you achieve your fitness goals and a higher quality of life.
Alex Eriksson is the founder of Anabolic Health, a men’s health blog dedicated to providing honest and research backed advice for optimal male hormonal health. Anabolic Health aspires to become a trusted resource where men can come and learn how to fix their hormonal problems naturally, without pharmaceuticals.
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