A flowering plant with a pungent rhizome, or root, called ginger, is the source of ginger oil — a versatile oil used for cooking and healing.
A trending culinary use of ginger oil is ginger vinegar. Put two drops in a quart of white distilled vinegar, shake gently, and then let sit for an hour. It adds an Asian zing to salads and spaghetti sauce.
For an upset stomach, add one drop of ginger oil to a full glass of cold water. Stir in a tablespoon of sugar, and sip slowly to relieve mild nausea and heartburn.
Lice, fleas, bedbugs, and cockroaches are repelled by ginger oil. Soak a small square of cardboard in ginger oil, then set it in areas where such pests are suspected of hiding. Never put ginger oil directly on fabrics or directly on skin, as it can make colors run and will irritate the skin.
For arthritis in the hands, fill the palm with baby oil, add a drop of ginger oil, and rub the hands together vigorously for five minutes. The resulting tingle and heat makes fingers much more flexible and lessens the pain.
Use the same mixture to give back rubs and massages. The aroma of ginger rubbed into the skin has a therapeutic effect on high stress and anxiety.