5 Amazing Health Benefits of Garlic

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Image Via Christine Vaufrey / Flickr
Image Via Christine Vaufrey / Flickr

Aside from making your breath smell bad, garlic actually does the body good! The health benefits of garlic have been known and utilized for centuries, with records dating back to garlic use during the time that the Giza pyramids were built (around 5,000 years ago!).

Even the Greek physician, Hippocrates (famous quoter: “let food be thy medicine, and let medicine be thy food”), prescribed garlic for many different illnesses ranging from the common cold to respiratory problems, parasites, weak digestion and fatigue.

Below are some examples of how RAW garlic can help improve all areas of your health! Read on to find out more!

High Cholesterol and High Blood Pressure

Garlic has been found to help lower blood pressure in individuals with untreated hypertension. Some reports have been made that the anti-hypertensive effect of garlic was equal if not more powerful than than that seen with anti-hypertensive drugs!

A study at Brown University School of Medicine revealed that men with high cholesterol levels can lower their blood pressure and reduce cholesterol simply by supplementing with aged garlic extract.

Garlic’s anti-hypertensive effects are linked to stimulation of intracellular nitric oxide (NO). This compound helps our body control vascular tone and regulates blood pressure. Raw garlic (particularly aged garlic extract) helps enhance the production of NO and thus improves blood flow in humans.

Natural Antibiotic

Why use antibiotics when you can use garlic? I’ve gotten over kidney infections, strep throat, and numerous other ailments simply by supplementing with garlic. Garlic is a powerful, natural antibiotic and it doesn’t kill off the natural, healthy bacteria in our gut like antibiotics do.

For garlic to be effective as a natural healing agent, it should be consumed raw. It should also be crushed, and exposed to the air for 10 minutes before consumption (this helps activate the compounds in the garlic which help fight off pathogenic bacteria and other germs).

A study published in the Journal of Antimicrobial Chemotherapy found that diallyl sulfide, a compound in raw garlic, was 100 times more effective than two popular antibiotics in fighting intestinal infections caused by the Campylobacter bacterium.

Heart Protection

Researchers at Emory University School of Medicine found something particularly interesting about a compound in garlic called Diallyl trisulfide. This compound helps protect the heart during cardiac surgery and after a heart attack. This compound is also believed to be able to be used as an effective treatment for heart failure.

Garlic can also prevent cardiomyopathy, a form of heart disease which is the leading cause of death in people with diabetes. Reports from the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry have found that garlic oil-fed rats with diabetes experienced beneficial changes associated with protection against heart disease. These changes are thought to be linked to the potent antioxidant properties of garlic oil, and may not be attributable to one compound, but the combined effects of over 20 different naturally occurring substances in the garlic oil.

Anti-Inflammatory

Aside from the cardiovascular system which reaps the amazing anti-inflammatory benefits of garlic, our other body systems also benefit. Diallyl sulfide (DAS) and thiacremonone in garlic have been shown to have anti-arthritic properties. Garlic also improves inflammatory conditions related to the musculoskeletal and respiratory system (i.e., allergic airway inflammation).

The organosulphur compounds in garlic scavenge oxidizing agents and inhibit the oxidation of fatty acids which helps prevent the formation of pro-inflammatory messengers, and thus inhibits bacterial growth via interaction with these sulphur-containing enzymes! Remember that in order to fully experience the anti-inflammatory effects of garlic, it must be consumed in the raw state. 

Fights Cancer

Garlic has been shown to be effective against cancer in numerous cases. In one study carried out by the Jiangsu Provincial Centre for Disease Control and Prevention in China, people who consumed garlic at least twice a week has a 44% lowered risk of developing lung cancer than individuals who did not consume raw garlic. Smokers who consumed raw garlic the same amount had the chance to reduce their risk of lung cancer by a third. The researchers wrote that garlic may potentially serve as a chemo-preventative agent for lung cancer.

Not only is garlic effective in preventing lung cancer, but it can also prevent brain cancer. Organosulphur compounds in garlic have the ability to destroy the cells in glioblastomas, a deadly type of brain tumor, according to scientists at the Medical University of South Carolina.

In addition, authors who published their findings in the Asian Pacific Journal of Cancer Prevention wrote that “Allium vegetables, especially garlic intake, are related to a decreased risk of prostate cancer.”

In most experiments utilizing fresh raw garlic in the form of extract, or synthetically prepared analogs or compounds, the inhibition of tumour growth has been successfully established.

Rosemary Garlic Salad Dressing

– 2 tsp. Hemp oil
– 1 tsp. finely chopped fresh rosemary
– 1-2 cloves raw garlic
– 1/2 tsp. cumin
– 1 tbsp. freshly squeezed lemon juice
– pinch cayenne pepper
– freshly cracked black pepper to taste

Whisk together the above ingredients and let it sit for 30 minutes to an hour or more. Toss in some freshly mixed baby greens with some sprouts, avocado and whatever other vegetables you please. Enjoy!

Sources

http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/265853.php

http://www.totalhealthmagazine.com/articles/cardiovascular-health/aged-garlic-extract-lowers-blood-pressure.html

http://jac.oxfordjournals.org/content/43/6/837.short

http://jac.oxfordjournals.org/content/47/5/665.short

http://bit.ly/1latOSn

http://www.whfoods.com/genpage.php?tname=foodspice&dbid=60

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1968250/

http://www.emeraldinsight.com/journals.htm?articleid=1610132

     
Carly Fraser has her BSc (Hons.) Degree in Neuroscience, and is the owner and founder at Live Love Fruit. She currently lives in Winnipeg, Manitoba, with a determined life mission to help inspire and motivate individuals to critically think about what they put in their bodies and to find balance through nutrition and lifestyle. She has helped hundreds of thousands of individuals to re-connect with their bodies and learn self-love through proper eating habits and natural living. She loves to do yoga, dance, and immerse herself in nature.

1 COMMENT

  1. […] Garlic helps lower blood pressure and high cholesterol levels, both of which result in reduced risk of stroke. It also contains a compound called Diallyl trisulfide that helps protect the heart during cardiac surgery and after a heart attack. In addition, garlic can prevent cardiomyopathy, a form of heart disease that is the leading cause of death in people with diabetes. […]

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