Are Ginger Snap Cookies Good for You?

With their satisfying crunch and spicy flavor, gingersnaps make for a decadent treat. They contribute towards your daily grain intake, helping you reach the 6 to 7 ounces of grains daily recommended by the U.S. Department of Agriculture. Gingersnaps provide a healthier alternative to some other types of cookies, and offer some essential nutrients that benefit your health. However, like other sweets, you should only consume gingersnaps in moderation as part of a balanced diet.


Gingersnaps provide a source of iron, an essential mineral. Iron helps your body process oxygen -- it makes up a component of myoglobin, a protein that allows your muscles to store oxygen, as well as hemoglobin, the protein your red blood cells use to circulate oxygen via your bloodstream. A serving of two gingersnap cookies contains 4.1 milligrams of iron. This makes up 51 percent of the daily iron requirements for men or 23 percent for women, based on intake recommendations set by the Institute of Medicine.


Gingersnaps also help you consume more manganese. Each serving of two gingersnaps contains 1 milligram of manganese -- 43 percent of the daily intake recommendations for men or 56 percent for women, according to the Institute of Medicine. Manganese supports your metabolism, activating enzymes that convert alcohol, carbohydrates, sugars and fats into useable energy. It also keeps your skeleton strong by helping you produce cartilage and bone tissue, and boosts collagen production to stimulate new tissue growth after an injury.

Niacin and Folate

Snacking on gingersnaps also helps you reach your daily recommended niacin and folate intakes. Each serving contains 2.1 milligrams of niacin -- 13 percent of the recommended daily intake for women or 15 percent for women -- as well as 92 micrograms of folate, or one-quarter of the recommended daily intake, set by the Institute of Medicine. Folate helps you convert homocysteine -- an amino acid linked to cardiovascular disease -- into less harmful amino acids, and also helps metabolize nucleic acids, the chemicals you need to make DNA. Niacin lowers your cholesterol, supports your metabolism and helps your cells communicate.

Comparisons and Healthier Options

Gingersnaps make a healthier alternative to some other cookies. A serving of two gingersnaps contains 266 calories and 6 grams of fat, compared to 379 calories and almost 19 grams of fat in an equivalent serving of chocolate chip cookies. They're also lower in sugar -- a serving of gingersnaps contains 13 grams of sugar, while chocolate chip cookies contain 28 grams per serving. While they're a smarter choice than other cookies, you should still consume gingersnaps in moderation to limit your sugar and fat intake.

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