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Top 11 Health Benefits Of Garlic That Will Surprise You

Top 11 Health Benefits Of Garlic That Will Surprise You

 

 

Overview

 

Do you know, what are the benefits of garlic? What is the nutritional profile? How can it improve our heart health? Is it a natural antibiotic?

 

The Health Benefits Of Garlic
health benefits of garlic

Today we will discuss all the health benefits of garlic, its nutritional value, its medicinal properties, the benefits of garlic on empty stomach, and more.

Garlic is a medicinal herb with several health benefits!

Its nutritional profile, benefits, and medicinal uses are quite popular in the modern world.

Garlic is well known perennial plant with fleshy leaves and bulbs.

Belonging to the Amaryllidaceae family, the botanical name of this herb is Allium sativum. It is a species of the onion genus.

This herb is native to Central and Middle East Asia, but currently, it is cultivated all over the world.

Several plant compounds and nutrients are responsible for the medicinal qualities of garlic.

Some plant compounds of garlic also exert broad-spectrum antimicrobial activities.

Before the invention of modern antibiotics, this medicinal herb was used to treat various diseases, such as typhoid, cholera, influenza, fever, etc. in Europe.

Since then, it has been known as a natural antibiotic.

During the first world war, Russian troops consumed large quantities of garlic to prevent infections due to their war injuries and it was regarded as Russian penicillin.

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

 

Read more: Top 10 Healthy Foods For Our Brain

 

Nutritional Value Of Garlic

 

The nutritional profile of garlic is quite impressive. It is loaded with various plant compounds as well as nutrients.

Every 100 gm of garlic contains very low in calories, carbs 33 gm, Protein 6.3 gm, fat 0.5 gm, and dietary fiber 2-2.1 gm.

On the other hand, it is a significant source of some minerals.

Garlic is rich in potassium 400 mg, calcium 180 mg, phosphorus 153 mg, magnesium 25 mg, zinc 1.15 mg, manganese 1.65 mg, and selenium 14 micrograms.

The Health Benefits Of Garlic
nutritional value of garlic


The plant compounds are responsible for the health benefits of garlic. These are allicin, allyl-methyl sulfide (AMS), diallyl disulfide (DADS), diallyl trisulfide (DAT), and s-allyl cysteine.

Quercetin is also present in garlic in an adequate amount. It also contains vitamin B and C.

The proper serving size is 2-3 cloves in a day for a normal individual. Each segment of garlic bulbs is known as a clove.

One garlic clove (standard size 3 gm) comes with 4.5 calories, carbs 1 gm, Protein 0.2 gm, and fiber 0.06 gm.

The same serving provides 2% manganese, 1% selenium, 1% vitamin C, and 2% vitamin B6 of the daily value.

The supplementation of garlic (capsule or powder) should not be more than 600-900 mg per day or as per the physician’s direction.

 

Read more: Top 9 Foods For Your Better Health

 

Benefits Of Eating Garlic

 

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

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

 

1. Natural Antibiotic

The most important and common health benefit of garlic is its antimicrobial quality.

The antimicrobial effects of garlic were mentioned in the research of Louis Pasteur, and allicin is responsible for it.

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

So, garlic can prevent infection of E. coli, staphylococcus, pseudomonas, salmonella typhi, etc. pathogenic organisms.

The daily supplementation of garlic may reduce common cold sickness by up to 63% and lower the duration of symptoms from 5 days to 1.5 days.

It also has antiviral effects and can prevent infection of influenza. A high dose of supplement aged garlic extract (AGE) can reduce the number of sick days of flu.

Campylobacter bacterium is one of the common causes of intestinal infections and DADS of garlic is 100 times more effective against this pathogen as compared to some modern antibiotics.

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

 

Read more: How To Increase Immunity During COVID-19

 

2. Antioxidant Effects

Garlic contains a ton of antioxidants. Selenium and vitamin C are responsible for the antioxidant effect.

Every 100 gm of garlic contains 5346 units of antioxidants, which protect from free radical and oxidative damage.

Free radicals trigger several health issues, such as cancer, diabetes, heart disease, early aging, etc. Garlic can prevent all of these.

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

 

Read more: 8 Health Benefits Of Antioxidants

 

3. Improves Heart Health

Cardiovascular problems are becoming more common health issues in the modern world.

Nowadays, studies found that it has potent medicinal properties that can improve our cardiac health.

The low sodium and high potassium content of garlic may help to control blood pressure.

According to studies, regular consumption of 1-2 cloves of garlic can reduce hypertensive heart problems by up to 15%.

The Health Benefits Of Garlic
garlic for healthy heart


Another study found that 600-1500 mg of AGE supplement for 24 weeks was as effective as the prescription drug atenolol in lowering blood pressure.

On the other hand, the plant compound diallyl trisulfide (DAT) of this heart-healthy food reduces bad cholesterol and increases HDL levels.

DAT also helps to keep triglyceride levels normal and protects our heart from atherosclerosis, heart attack, stroke, etc.

Garlic also promotes NO production and maintains the elasticity of the blood vessels. The vasodilation effects of NO keep the blood circulation normal.

The anticoagulation nature of this medicinal herb prevents the breakdown of platelets inside the blood vessels and prevents blood clotting.

It acts as a blood thinner and ensures proper blood circulation throughout our body.

 

Read more: How To Prevent Heart Attacks

 

4. May Prevent Cancer

Cancer preventing quality is one of the vital health benefits of garlic.

The organo-sulfur plant compounds, such as allicin, and DAT act as carcinogen blocking agents.

Antioxidant Quercetin also prevents oxidative stress and exerts anticancer effects.

The organo-sulfur compounds destroy glioblastoma cells, these are deadly brain tumor cells.

Generally, DAT is most effective in the prevention of brain tumors.

Regular intake of this medicinal herb reduces the harmful effects of aflatoxin, nitrosamine, etc. carcinogens and prevents tumors in the GI tract.

Additionally, garlic can prevent breast, colon, and rectal cancer.

According to a study, those who consumed garlic for the last 7 years, at least twice a week, had 40-44% fewer chances of lung cancer.

 

Read more: Top 10 Antioxidant-rich Foods

 

5. Prevents Respiratory Infections

The prevention of respiratory infections is another vital health benefit of garlic.

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

The Health Benefits Of Garlic
garlic & respiratory health


This natural antibiotic herb prevents our respiratory system from infections and those harmful effects.

On the other hand, garlic can prevent allergies, common cold, fever, etc.

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

 

Read more: 9 Harmful Effects Of Smoking

 

6. Natural Immune Booster

Generally, selenium and magnesium act as a cofactor of glutathione peroxidase and superoxide dismutase enzymes respectively.

Both of these enzymes are antioxidants and promote a defence mechanism of our bodies.

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

So, the immunity-boosting role of garlic is as important as its antimicrobial, and antioxidant effects.

 

Read more: Top 11 Zinc-rich Foods & Their Health Benefits

 

7. Detoxifies Our Body

Garlic has the ability to detox heavy metals from our bodies.

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

A study conducted on 117 people showed that this medicinal herb can reduce the levels of metal lead in the blood by 19%.

The Health Benefits Of Garlic


On the other hand, garlic extract has a protective ability from gamma radiation and may protect from chromosomal damage.

This herb also reduces many clinical signs of toxicity.

 

Read more: Top 12 Health Benefits Of Blueberries

 

8. Improves Bone Health

The health benefits of garlic in the prevention of bone loss are not well documented.

However, animal studies have shown that garlic increases estrogen levels and minimizes bone loss in females.

A study in menopausal women found that regular consumption of 2 gm of garlic (or dry garlic extract) significantly reduced a marker of estrogen deficiency.

So, garlic supplements can be effective for the bone health of elderly women.

On the other hand, allium foods, such as garlic and onions also have protective effects against osteoarthritis.

 

Read more: Top 12 Health Benefits Of Almonds

 

9. Good For Digestion

The benefits of garlic on empty stomach are quite popular among health-conscious people.

It is very effective for preventing as well as curing several diseases.

This herb promotes the proper functioning of the bladder and liver. It triggers appetite and improves digestion.

Garlic can help to control stress and prevents excess acid secretion in the stomach due to an imbalance of the gut-brain axis.

According to research, the organo-sulfur compound DADS have protective effects against alcohol-induced liver injury.

The antioxidants of garlic also protect the GI tract from oxidative cell damage and inflammation.

 

Read more: Top 12 Foods To Improve Digestion

 

10. Improves Athletic Performance

Do you know, this medicinal herb was one of the earliest performances enhancing stuff!

Traditionally, garlic was used to cure fatigue and enhance the workability of employees.

In ancient Greece, garlic was given to Olympic players.

For people with cardiac issues, who consumed garlic oil for six weeks their exercise capacity was found to be improved.

The overall health benefits of garlic could help you live longer.

 

Read more: Top 14 Health Benefits Of Pomegranate

 

11. Good For Skin & Hair

Garlic health benefits are also popular in the beauty world.

The antioxidant effects protect hair and skin cell from free radical damage as well as environmental exposure.

The Health Benefits Of Garlic
garlic & skincare

On the other hand, garlic prevents the breakdown of collagen protein in the body, maintains skin elasticity and texture.

This herb can delay aging and also lower signs of aging.

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

 

Read more: Top 9 Probiotic Foods & Their Health Benefits

 

Aged Garlic Extract (AGE)

 

The health benefits of garlic are already discussed, but due to its pungent flavor and taste, many people do not like to consume raw garlic.

For this reason, many pharmaceutical and Ayurveda companies make garlic dry powder, pills as supplements.

The Health Benefits Of Garlic
Aged Garlic Extract


However, the medicinal compounds are short-lived and they break down quickly.

So, the health benefits of garlic supplements are less than that of raw form. AGE was created to solve this problem.

To prepare AGE, garlic is cultivated by organic farming, and then stored in an aqueous ethanolic solution inside a steel tank for up to 20 months.

So, the overall health benefits can be preserved by AGE, but the anticancer property is lost.

 

 

Precautions

 

According to the USFDA*, it is a GRAS** listed food.

But there are some precautions to be taken during the consumption of raw garlic or supplements.

1) Garlic can reduce the effectiveness of anticoagulants and anti-HIV drugs.

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

3) It can reduce the effects of estrogenic pills or contraceptive pills.

4) Excess consumption of supplements or raw garlic can cause heartburn, nausea, vomiting, headache, etc.

 

*USFDA is the Food and Drug Administration Of the USA

**GRAS means Generally Recognized As Safe

 

 

Now, The Conclusion

 

All the health benefits of garlic conclude its significant role in the health world as well as Ayurveda.

It is very easy to incorporate into your daily diet. Cooked or semi-cooked garlic is used in soups, sauces, etc.

The strong taste of garlic adds a pungent and unique flavor to the recipes.

You can use whole cloves, smooth pastes, dry powder, extract and garlic oil.

The benefits of garlic oil are also important to our health. It is used for fighting fatigue.

Garlic oil is topically used to treat fungal infections on the skin, nails, warts, etc.

On the other hand, lukewarm water with garlic extract and lemon juice may provide several benefits.

According to health experts, 2-3 garlic cloves in a day can reduce the excess fat by promoting the metabolism of the body.

Quercetin and allicin play a vital role in weight loss.

Regular consumption of 2-3 cloves may prevent prostate enlargement.

Recent studies suggest that this medicinal herb increases ferroprotein production in the blood, keeps the iron level normal and prevents iron-deficient anemia.

So, from heart health to cancer prevention, antimicrobial effects to skincare, garlic is considered a wonder herb.

Always try to consume fresh and raw garlic instead of processed supplements.

 

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