Garlic from the Allium family is a widely known food ingredient. Not only is it used for flavoring foods but also used as a medicine since prehistoric times. It has the ability to prevent and treat many different diseases.
Garlic is closely related to vegetables like onion, shallot, leeks, and chives. The father of western medicine, Hippocrates prescribed garlic as a therapeutic agent for different health problems. He advised people to use garlic for problems like indigestion, respiratory problems, and fatigue. Athletes in ancient Greece used garlic as a performance-enhancing agent. Garlic has been used throughout the Middle East and Asia to treat bronchitis, high blood pressure, flatulence, colic, diabetes, and fever.
There are numerous benefits of garlic that have been recognized since ancient times. This article discusses some of those benefits.
The Blood Purifier
Garlic is an excellent blood purifier. People who are acne-prone can use raw garlic cloves with warm water to get rid of zits by tackling the root cause of acne. Add a little lemon to the mix and not only will you be able to shed some pounds but also all the harmful toxins will be flushed out of your system. Thus, garlic also cleanses the system of our bodies.
Garlic is used to treat digestive problems due to its anti-oxidant and pre and pro-biotic properties. All these components make your digestive system healthier and function effectively. In addition to these components, garlic contains minerals and vitamins that are beneficial for kidney, bladder and liver function. Garlic is also known to reduce stress which results in lower stomach acid secretion. As an end result, your digestive tract is healthier.
Garlic is rich in antioxidants and pre-biotics and probiotics. These components help increase gut health. Garlic also has minerals and vitamins that play a huge role in improving liver, bladder and kidney health. This works in tandem with the anti-stress properties of garlic which stop the increase in excessive stomach acid to ensure a cleaner and more efficient digestive tract.
Garlic can cause pain in some people when consumed on an empty stomach. This is because garlic has fructans that are fermented in the stomach to produce gases and sometimes flatulence or stomach pain. This condition only happens in people with sensitive stomachs.
Cold and Flu
Garlic is an excellent remedy for that stubborn cold and flu. Garlic has amazing immune-boosting properties that will help relieve a stuffy nose while curing your cold. Simply consume two cloves of garlic in either raw or cooked form or you can make a tea out of it. For flavoring use honey and ginger, this is an excellent tea that will help you recover quickly. Although garlic should be consumed raw to avail its full benefits but you can add them to your soups and broths to fight sinus problems and the common cold.
Kyolic aged garlic has been tested for its effectiveness in reducing high blood pressure. According to a study in Australia, kyolic garlic is very effective in controlling hypertension and gut health. Consumption of garlic improves arterial stiffness and lowers the risk of heart disease as well.
Prevention of Heart disease:
Garlic is very effective in lowering cholesterol levels when consumed daily. This is due to its anti-oxidant properties of Allicin. Garlic also regulates blood sugar and blood pressure. Consuming raw garlic is imperative as garlic loses its properties when cooked whole.
Anti-bacterial and Anti-parasitic Properties
Since ancient times garlic was used for its anti-bacterial properties. For the past 7000 years, it has been used for treating fungal, bacterial and parasitic infections. Garlic mouthwash is used to ward off bacteria that cause tooth decay and cavities. This mouthwash is not very pleasant in terms of smell but very effective in getting rid of tooth problems related to bacteria.
During old times, meat consumers used to eat garlic for its anti-bacterial properties. As meat could not be preserved properly and there was a chance of infection so garlic was used. Laborers also consumed garlic for its health benefits.
Prevention of Cancers
Scientists have performed numerous studies that have shown that daily consumption of raw garlic has been associated with a lower risk of cancer. Garlic strengthens our body against cancerous cells by boosting our immune system. In particular, garlic prevents stomach and colorectal cancers.
In another study, it has been demonstrated that people who consume garlic two times a week have 44% lower chance of getting lung cancer. This figure came from a study carried out for 7 years in China. Similarly, the organo-sulfur compounds in garlic have been identified to destroy glioblastomal cells in the brain. These cells produce brain tumors. Another research says that organo-sulfur compounds namely DAS, DADs, and DATs are effective in eradicating brain cancer cells. And DATs is, in fact, the most powerful out of the three.
Benefits for Hair and Skin
Garlic has anti-oxidant properties that protect the skin from free radicals which cause aging. Garlic is an effective agent in slowing down the depletion of collagen which slows the process of aging. The topical application of garlic is very beneficial for infections. Garlic is used as an effective remedy for treating athlete’s foot and ringworm. Garlic is a star in terms of treating hair loss. Rubbing garlic juice on the scalp where the hairline is thinning will regrow hair in that part. Alternatively, garlic-infused oil can be applied to the hair for hair loss as well.
Garlic can be used for getting rid of the most stubborn splinters. This use was forgotten over the years but some people still use and recommend this remedy. Simply cover the splinter with a garlic glove and wrap it with a bandage. Your splinter will disappear in no time.
Microbial infections during pregnancy can result in preterm labor and delivery. Norwegian scientists have studied garlic for its anti-microbial properties that may alleviate the risk of preterm delivery. According to this study, the Allium family and dried fruits have been effective in reducing the risk of preterm labor.