Ginger essential oil is extracted from the plant Zingiberaceae officinale of the
Zingiberaceae family and is also known as Common or Jamaica Ginger.
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The plant is said to originate from India, China and Java, yet is also native to
Africa and the West Indies. It was most likely brought to Europe between the
10th and 15th century as a condiment and spice.
Ginger is a perennial herb and grows to about 3 - 4 feet high with a thick
spreading tuberous root. It has narrow spear-shaped leaves and white or yellow
flowers growing directly from the root. The oil is distilled from the unpeeled
dried ground root. The aroma of Ginger Essential Oil can vary widely, depending
on the distillation and quality of the root being distilled.
It has been used as a medicine since very early times and is recorded in both
Sanskrit and Chinese texts and is also mentioned in the literature of the ancient
Greeks, Romans, and Arabians. The name ginger is said to be derived from the
Gingi district in India, where tea made from ginger is used for stomach upsets.