Zingiber officinale (ginger) contains a variety of compounds, including diarylheptanoids and the phenol gingerol. Preclinical research has shown that ginger acts as an inhibitor of cyclooxygenase (COX), particularly the inducible form of COX(COX-2), rather than the constitutive form (COX-1). Ginger also inhibits lipo-oxygenase, resulting in suppression in the synthesis of the inflammatory leukotrienes. Various ginger compounds and extracts have been tested as anti-inflammatory agents, where the length of the sidechains determines the level of effectiveness. However, a combination of ginger extracts is more effective in decreasing inflammatory mediators than an individual compound. ARTHRO-EASE contains a potent combination of these ginger extracts.
A nearly (2001) randomized, double-blinded, placebo-controlled, multicenter, parallel-group study on the effects of Ginger on knee pain in patients with osteoarthritis was published in the journal “Arthritis and Rheumatology.” It concluded that ginger extract had a statistically significant effect on reducing the symptoms of OA of the knee. This effect was moderate. There was a good safety profile, with mostly mild GI adverse events in the ginger extract group. 2001 “Arthritis and Rheumatology” https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/11710709/ A 2015 meta-analysis published in “Osteoarthritis and Cartilage” concluded that “Ginger was modestly efficacious and reasonably safe for treatment of OA. 2015 https://www.oarsijournal.com/article/S1063-4584(14)01276-X/fulltext
As of 2016, there were 16 clinical trials using ginger supplementation as a preventative agent or treatment for inflammatory conditions, such as arthritis. These clinical trials demonstrate compelling evidence for the anti-inflammatory properties of ginger and its potential use to treat these conditions (including osteo and rheumatoid arthritis).
In 2020, a narrative review summarized the last 10-years of randomized controlled trials (RCTs) in which ginger was traditionally used as a pain reliever for dysmenorrhea, delayed onset muscle soreness (DOMS), osteoarthritis (OA),chronic low back pain (CLBP), and migraine. It is well-known that Ginger has a pain-reducing effect which it modulates through various mechanisms: inhibition of prostaglandins via the COX and LOX-pathways, antioxidant activity, inhibition of the transcription factor nf-kB, or acting as agonist of vanilloid nociceptors. In regard to DOMS, the four eligible RCTs suggested a reduction of inflammation after oral and topical ginger administration. Regarding knee OA, nine RCTs agree in stating that oral and topical use of ginger seems to be effective against pain, while others did not find significant differences. 2020 “Phytotherapy Research” https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/32436242/
After 2 decades, while there are many good clinical studies that demonstrate significant pain reduction and improvement in OA joint function with the use of ginger extracts, other studies have not confirmed this conclusion. As with most supplements, further studies on Ginger are warranted to better determine the optimal dose, route of administration(oral vs. topical), and form (extract vs. isolate) used to induce its anti-inflammatory properties of pain relief and joint preservation.