Effect of Ginger Powder Supplementation in Patients with Non-Alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease: A Randomized Clinical Trial

Clin Exp Gastroenterol. 2020 Jan 23:13:35-45. doi: 10.2147/CEG.S234698. eCollection 2020.


Background: Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) is one of the most common chronic liver disorders. The main causes of NAFLD are associated with insulin resistance, severe lipid metabolism disorders, oxidative stress and inflammation. Previous studies have reported that ginger has positive metabolic results.

Aim: The aim of this study was to determine the effect of ginger powder supplement on lipid profiles, insulin resistance, liver enzymes, inflammatory cytokines and antioxidant status in patients with NAFLD.

Methods: In this randomized clinical trial, 46 people with NAFLD were parted into two groups and subjected to the ginger or placebo capsules (3 capsules daily, each containing 500 mg of ginger or wheat flour) over 12 weeks. All patients received a diet with balanced energy and physical activity during the intervention period. Liver ultrasonography, anthropometric indices and biochemical parameters were measured before and after intervention.

Results: No significant difference was found between the two groups in the baseline variables at the beginning of the study. At the end of the study, serum levels of alanine aminotransferase (ALT), total cholesterol, low-density lipoprotein (LDL-C), fasting blood glucose, and insulin resistance index (HOMA), C-reactive protein (hs-CRP), and fetuin-A in the group receiving a ginger supplement significantly decreased compared to placebo. However, there was no significant difference between the two groups in body weight, fasting insulin, HDL-C, triglyceride, adiponectin, alpha-tumor necrosis factor (TNF-α), total antioxidant capacity (TAC), gamma-glutamyl transferase (GGT), aspartate aminotransferase (AST), fatty liver index (FLI), fatty liver grade and blood pressure.

Conclusion: The ginger supplement may be used as a complementary therapy along with existing therapies to reduce insulin resistance, liver enzymes and inflammation in patients with non-alcoholic fatty liver.

Keywords: ginger; insulin resistance; lipid profiles; liver enzymes; non-alcoholic fatty liver disease.