Garlic has numerous health benefits, from being high in antioxidants; antibacterial; antiviral; anti-fungal; analgesic and is also fabulous for the digestive tract. This is all due to a compound found in it called Allicin, which forms when the garlic clove is chopped, crushed or chewed. Allicin is also responsible for the distinct garlic smell!
One ounce (25g) of Garlic contains 23% of the Recommended Daily Allowance (RDA) of Manganese; 17% of the RDA of Vitamin B6; 15% RDA of Vitamin C and 6% RDA of Selenium. It also has a generous amount of calcium; copper; potassium; phosphorus; iron and Vitamin B1.
So, what else can Garlic do?
It can combat sickness, including colds and flus
A supplement of garlic is known to boost the immune system
One large 1-week study found that a daily garlic supplement reduced the number of colds by 63% compared with the placebo group
The average length of cold symptoms was also reduced from 5 days in the placebo group to just 1.5 days in the garlic supplement group (a drop of 70%)
In another study, it was discovered that if you take a high garlic extract daily (2.56g) you could decrease the number of days sick with colds or flu by 61%, so if you are prone to getting colds and flus, you could consider increasing your dose of garlic daily or, you could make the aforementioned “Kill All Known Germs” preparation and take a daily dose of 30ml – it sure does work!
The compounds in garlic are also known to help reduce blood pressure, according to human studies on people suffering from this condition
In one of the studies, doses of aged garlic extract equating to 600-1500mg was found to be just as effective as the drug Atenolol at reducing blood pressure over a 24-week period
This is equivalent to 4 cloves of garlic per day, so is pretty high
Garlic has also been found to reduce the “bad” LDL cholesterol whilst ensuring the “good” HDL cholesterol is unaffected
Garlic is also naturally high in antioxidants, which reduce oxidative damage from free radicals, which affect the ageing process. It has thus been found that taking high doses of garlic has a positive effect on reducing oxidative stress in people with high blood pressure
It is also great for the heart. In studies it was found that those taking garlic oil for 6 weeks had a reduction in their peak heart rate of 12%