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Tuesday, January 19, 2021

Top 8 Benefits of Garlic That Will Surprise You

Top 8 Benefits of Garlic That Will Surprise You

 

 

Introduction

 

Do you know, garlic is a medicinal herb with various health benefits!  The nutritional profile, medicinal uses, and health benefits of garlic are quite popular from the Ayurveda to the fitness world.

Benefits of Garlic
Health Benefits of Garlic


It is well known perennial plant with fleshy leaves and bulbs. Belonging to the Amaryllidaceae family, the botanical name of garlic is Allium sativum. It is a species in the onion genus.

Garlic is native to Central and Middle East Asia, but now it is cultivated all over the world.

Various micronutrients, phytochemicals are responsible for the medicinal qualities of garlic. The phytochemicals show broad-spectrum antimicrobial activities.

Before the invention of the modern antibiotic, this medicinal herb was used to treat various diseases, such as typhoid, influenza, cholera, etc. in Europe. Since then, it has been known as a Natural Antibiotic.

During the first world war, on the battlefield, Russian troops consumed large quantities of garlic to protect against infection from injuries, and garlic regarded as Russian Penicillin.

It has been used for thousands of years in Ancient Egypt for both cooking and therapeutic purpose.

According to health experts, it is very effective to prevent high blood pressure, cardiovascular diseases, obesity, constipation, cancer, and many more.

 

 

Nutritional Value of Garlic

 

Before knowing the health benefits of garlic, it is important to know the nutritional facts of this herb.

As we know, garlic is full of several micronutrients with effective medicinal properties.

Every 100 gm garlic contains:

i. Very low calories, close to 100-150 cal.

ii. Carbs – 33 gm

iii. Protein – 6.3 gm

iv. Dietary fats – 0.5 gm

v. Dietary fiber – 2-2.1 gm

On the other hand, it is a significant source of some important minerals, such as potassium 400 mg, calcium 180 mg, phosphorus 153 mg, magnesium 25 mg, zinc 1.15 mg, manganese 1.65 mg, selenium 14 microgram, etc.

Benefits of Garlic
Nutritional Value of Garlic


Garlic also contains vitamin-B complex (such as thiamin, riboflavin, niacin, pantothenic acid, etc.) and vitamin-C in a decent amount.

The phytonutrients are also important for the benefits of garlic. They are Allicin, Alline, AMS (allyl-methyl sulfide), DADS (diallyl disulfide), DAT(diallyl trisulfide), etc. Quercetin also presents in a significant amount.

The serving size of garlic is 2-4 gm per day or 2-3 cloves in a day for a normal individual. Each segment of the garlic bulb is known as clove.

One garlic clove (standard size 3 gm) comes with 4.5 calories, 1 gm carbs, protein 0.2 gm, fiber 0.06 gm with 2% manganese, 1% selenium, 1% vitamin-C, 2% vitamin-B6 of the daily value (DV).

If anyone consumes garlic supplements (capsule or powder), then the amount will not be more than 600-900 mg per day or as per physician’s direction.

 

 

Health Benefits of Garlic

 

From the Ayurveda to the fitness world, garlic always uses as a medicinal herb. Its health benefits are well documented.

According to the research, the health benefits of garlic are depending largely on the sulfur compounds Allicin, DADS, DAT, AMS, etc.

From cardiac health to weight loss, cancer to diabetes, antimicrobial effects to antioxidants, it provides more.

So, let’s explore all the health and medicinal benefits of this medicinal plant to increase wellness.

 

i. Garlic Improves Heart Health

Cardiovascular problems are becoming more common in the overall world. The benefits of garlic to the improvement of heart health are well documented.

Low sodium and high potassium-rich garlic may control blood pressure. The study shows that regularly consuming 1-2 of garlic clove can reduce hypertensive cardiac problems by up to 15%.

Benefits of Garlic
Garlic Promotes Cardiac Health


According to a study, 600-1500 mg of aged garlic extract (AGE) as a supplement as effective in lowering blood pressure as the prescription drug Atenolol in people suffering from high BP.

On the other hand, the phytochemical DAT reduces bad cholesterol (LDL) and increases good cholesterol (HDL) levels. In addition, it helps to keep triglyceride levels normal and protects our heart from atherosclerosis, heart attack, etc.

Garlic actually protects blood cholesterol from spiking.

It promotes nitric oxide (NO) production in the wall of blood vessels and maintains the elasticity of the vessels. Garlic also helps in vasodilation to keeps the blood circulation normal and protects the heart.

The anticoagulant nature of garlic is also important to heart health. It prevents the breakdown of platelets inside the blood vessels and prevents blood clotting. So, it acts as a blood thinner and ensures proper circulation.

 

ii. Garlic is a Natural Antibiotic

Another important benefit of garlic is its antibiotic property.

Louis Pasteur mentions in his research the antibacterial effect of garlic and phytochemical allicin is responsible for it.

The study shows that only 1 mg of allicin equivalent to the 15 units of penicillin.

Benefits of Garlic
Garlic is a Natural Antibiotic


Due to the antibacterial effects, garlic can prevent infection of E. coli, staphylococcus aureus, salmonella typhi, pseudomonas, etc. pathogenic organisms.

On the other hand, daily supplementation of garlic may reduce common cold sickness up to 63%, and lower the average duration of symptoms from 5 days to just 1.5 days.

It also has antiviral effects, so it can prevent the infection of influenza and a high dose of supplement AGE can reduce the number of sick days of flu.

Additionally, garlic can prevent fungal infection in the skin through topical use.

 

iii. Antioxidant Nature of Garlic

Garlic contains tons of antioxidants. The phytochemicals, selenium, vitamin-C are responsible for the antioxidant properties.

Benefits of Garlic
Garlic as an antioxidant


Per 100 gm garlic contains 5346 units of antioxidants. They help to create protection against free radicals, which further prevent oxidative damage and cell death.

Free radicals are also responsible for different types of health issues, such as cancer, diabetes, heart problems, aging, and many more. Garlic can prevent all of them.

On the other hand, the antioxidants of garlic also protect from neurodegenerative diseases, such as Alzheimer’s, dementia, etc.

 

iv.  Garlic May Prevent Cancer

Cancer preventing property is one of the important health benefits of garlic.

The organo-sulfur compounds of garlic such as allicin, diallyl-trisulfide, etc. act as a carcinogen blocking agents.

Antioxidant Quercetin also prevents free radical damage and exerts anti-cancer activity.

The organo-sulfur compounds destroy glioblastoma cells, which is a deadly brain tumor. The diallyl-trisulfide (DAT) is most effective in the prevention of brain tumors.

Regular consumption of garlic reduces the effect of aflatoxin, nitrosamine, etc. carcinogens and prevents tumors in the stomach, liver.

Additionally, it can prevent breast, colon, and rectal cancer. According to some research, those who consumed garlic from the last 7 years, at least twice a week, had 40-44% lower chances of lung cancer.

 

v. Hair and Skin Care

Do you know, the benefits of garlic also popular in the beauty world!

The antioxidants of garlic protect hair and skin cells from free radical damage and environmental exposure.

Benefits of Garlic
Garlic for Hair and Skincare


On the other hand, garlic prevents the breakdown of natural collagen of the body and maintains skin elasticity as well as delay aging.

It protects the skin from fungal infections and provides relief from several skin diseases, such as eczema.

 

vi. Garlic Act as an Immune Booster

Boosting immunity is an important health benefit of garlic.

The minerals selenium and manganese act as a co-factor of glutathione peroxidase and superoxide dismutase enzymes respectively.

Both of the enzymes are antioxidant in nature and promote a defense mechanism of the body.

A recent study shows that garlic can enhance the action of T-lymphocytes, macrophages, and increases the number of NK-cells (Natural Killer cell).

So, its immunity-boosting role is as popular as the antimicrobial and antioxidant nature.

 

vii. Garlic Prevents Respiratory Infections

The prevention of respiratory infections are another vital benefit of garlic.

When our respiratory tract gets infected, it does not function properly, and as a result, the person suffers from a hypoxic condition.

Benefits of Garlic
Garlic Prevents Respiratory Infections


Hypoxia contributes strain to the lungs and heart. If it continues for a long period of time, it can lead to respiratory problems as well as heart-related issues.

Here garlic comes to recuse yet again. The natural antibiotic prevents our respiratory system from those harmful effects.

As we know, it can also prevent common colds, allergies, and other infections in the respiratory tract.

Garlic extract and honey mixed with green tea may reduce the effects of asthma, bronchitis in regular consumption.

 

viii. Detoxification of The Body

Garlic has the ability to detox heavy metal from the body.

The sulfur compounds of garlic can protect against organ damage from toxic heavy metals.

A study conducted on 117 people, showed that garlic has the ability to reduce lead metal levels in the blood by 19%.

It can also reduce many clinical signs of toxicity.

On the other hand, garlic extract has a protective ability from the Gama-radiation and may reduce chromosomal damage.

 

Benefits of Garlic
Top Health Benefits of Garlic

 

Precautions

 

So many health benefits of garlic are present. According to the US FDA (Food and Drug Administration), it is a GRAS (Generally Recognised as Safe) listed food. But there are some precautions to be taken during the consumption of garlic.

i. Garlic can reduce the effectiveness of anticoagulant, and anti-HIV drugs.

ii. It also reduces the activity of calcium channel blockers, glucocorticoids, and some anticancer drugs.

iii. It can reduce the action of estrogenic hormonal pills or contraceptive pills.

iv. Excess consumption of garlic supplements can cause heartburn, nausea, vomiting, headache, etc.

v. Excess garlic consumption can cause mouth and body odor also.

These are the precautions that must be kept in mind when you are consuming raw garlic or supplements.

 

 

Aged Garlic Extract (AGE)

 

The health benefits of garlic are known to all, but due to the pungent odor, many people do not want to consume raw garlic.

For this reason, many pharmaceutical companies make garlic powder, pills as a supplement.

Benefits of Garlic
Garlic Supplements


But the phytochemicals of garlic are short-lived, they break down quickly. So, the medicinal qualities of the supplements are less than that of fresh raw garlic.  

AGE is a supplement form of garlic extract that was created to solve this problem.

To prepare AGE supplements, garlic is cultivated by organic farming (chemical fertilizers and pesticides are not used). Then the garlic is stored in an aqueous ethanolic solution in a steel tank for up to 20 months.

The overall health benefits can be preserved by AGE form. However, its anti-cancer property is reduced.

 

 

Now, The Conclusion

 

All the benefits of garlic conclude its significant roles in the Ayurveda and fitness world. To prevent various health issues, we need to keep garlic in our daily diet.

It is very easy to incorporate garlic into our current diet. Cooked or semi-cooked garlic is used in soups, sauces, etc. Lukewarm water with garlic extract and lemon juice may provide several health benefits.

Benefits of Garlic
Lemon-garlic Water


From cardiac health to skincare, cancer prevention to antimicrobial effects, garlic considered a wonder herb.

According to some health experts, 2-3 cloves of garlic in a day can reduce the excess body fats by increasing body metabolism. The phytochemicals, such as allicin, quercetin is too effective for weight loss.

The dietary fiber of garlic may fill the satiety and prevent excess food intake. Fiber content also prevents sugar absorption in the body and regular consumption of garlic may control the blood sugar levels in type-II diabetic patients.

Regular consumption of 2-3 cloves of garlic can prevent prostate enlargement.

The recent studies suggest that garlic increases the ferroprotein production in the blood and keeps the iron level normal. So, this medicinal plant plays a vital role in preventing iron-deficient anemia.

So, there are various garlic supplements are available in the market, but to get all the health benefits of garlic, always try to consume fresh, and raw garlic.

 

 

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