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The Health Benefits of Garlic- Reasons why Garlic is a Powerful Herb

By Edited Nov 13, 2013 1 0

The health benefits of garlic are many and we are going to take a look at some of the best benefits of garlic cloves, but first a little background information on garlic.

Introduced in England in 1548 for the first time, Allium Sativum or if you like garlic is believed to be one of the oldest known plants with numerous health benefits that may include a potential for curing cancer.

With its several culinary and medicinal properties, it is no wonder herbalists refer to garlic as the wonder drug. Garlic has a long range of health benefits that lie within its natural ingredients and vitamins.

Health Benefits of Garlic
Credit: Garlic by Neil conway via flickr [CC-BY-2.0

Why Is Garlic Such a Powerful Herb? Natural Ingredients Found In Garlic

The reason why garlic is such a powerful herb is mainly due to the many natural ingredients found in the herb. These ingredients not only help fight various kinds of diseases that may be in one’s body, but also provide the it with essential nutrients such as phosphorus, calcium, manganese, copper and tryptophan.

These nutrients are required by the body for its normal functioning. In a clove of garlic, you will also readily find vitamin C, vitamin B6 and vitamin B1 vital for the body. Vitamin C deficiency for instance may causes scurvy.

The presences of flavonoids and sulfur is the secret to garlic’s diseases fighting capability, and in case you were wondering why garlic has a pungent, strong taste and not so appealing smell, then you can blame it on the presence of sulfur compounds, alliin, allicin and dithiins.

Sulfur is also used extensively in hair products to aid in fighting various skin diseases and ailments of the scalp. Although it does a great work at fighting skin diseases, it leaves the user smelling like, well, rotten eggs but let us just call it unpleasant for the sake of being politically correct.

Even though sulfur is one of the most significant and useful chemicals that occur naturally, one of its natural characteristics and how it is generally identified is by its pungent smell which is usually likened to the smell of rotten eggs.

It is no wonder garlic too has a strong pungent smell due to the presence of sulfur compounds in it.

Table Of Vitamins, Minerals And Chemicals Found In Garlic

Chemicals Found in garlic

Vitamins Present In Garlic

Minerals Present in garlic

Allilin, Allicin, Diallyl disulphide, Ferulic acid, Saponin, Beta Carotene, Beta Sitosterol, Phytic acid Ascorbic acid, Niacin, Riboflavin, Thiamine Zinc, Magnesium, Calcium, Phosphorus, Selenium, Potassium, Folate, Iron.
Garlic Helath Benefits
Credit: Garlic bulbs by Jfingas via Flickr [CC-BY-ND-2.0]

Garlic Health Benefits

Health Benefits of Garlic To The Body

Garlic has a long list of health benefits with new ones only being just discovered in the recent past. The most notable health benefits include:

  • Garlic Reduces The Risk Of Heart Diseases

Garlic is known to have anti-inflammatory properties which go a long way in helping blood vessels from oxidative stress and inflammation.

Heart attacks and atherosclerosis are cardiovascular problems that usually develop as a result of reactive oxygen molecules reacting with the linings of blood vessels thus damaging them. This oxidative damage usually leads to the inflammation of blood vessels and consequently their clogging.

Thanks to the presence of sulfur compounds in garlic, which have anti-inflammatory properties, cardiovascular and heart disease problems can be managed easily and put under control.

  • Garlic Helps Prevent Cancer

Due to the large number of anti-oxidants and anti-cancer compounds, garlic is classified by the American National Cancer Institute under a small group of foods that help fight cancer, anti-cancer foods.

When taken on a daily basis, garlic can keep almost all sorts of cancer at bay except for prostate and breast cancer. Take it sparingly, say a few times a week for instance once or twice and it will cure two types of cancer, colorectal and renal cancer.

garlic cloves
Credit: By Iqbal Osman_1 via Flickr [CC-BY-2.0]
  • Maintains Your Blood Pressure Naturally

Statistics show that over 50 million Americans are suffering from high blood pressure.

From experiments and research that has been conducted over the years, garlic has been found to enable the body’s blood cells to release hydrogen sulphide gas.

Hydrogen sulphide to be precise, which controls blood pressure and at the same time it makes blood vessels to dilate.

Now high blood pressure is usually as a result of the blood vessels being constricted or clogged or the blood being too thick. When they dilate, as a result of the hydrogen sulphide gas, then the blood pressure drops significantly.

  • Suffering From A Cold? Garlic Can Help Cure Common Colds

The presence of allicin, which is a natural antiviral compound, can kill the over two hundred plethora of viruses that cause the common cold.

Studies have shown that if taken before a bout of common cold, garlic can help prevent the cold virus from attacking your body.

But in the event that you are already infected with the common cold virus, taking approximately four cloves of raw garlic either chewed wholly or added to your favorite soup can help reduce the amount of time that it will take for you to recover from the cold.

benefits of garlic
Credit: By Rüdiger Wölk via Wikimedia commons (CC-BY-3.0)
  • Garlic As A Treatment For Herpes And Warts

Just as common cold is caused by viruses, so are warts and herpes, and for that matter therefore, the antiviral properties of garlic don’t stop at treating the cold virus only but also herpes and warts.

In case you are infected by warts, crush a couple of garlic cloves and apply it on the affected area. Within no time, the warts will disappear.

If you are infected by the herpes virus, you will have to cut a clove of garlic into two; take one piece and apply it on the affected area and chew the remaining half.

  • Helps Boost Your Body’s Immune System

Macrophages and T-lymphocytes are cells that are responsible for defending your body against attacks from bacteria and other foreign bodies in your blood stream; in short they are responsible for your body’s immune system (roughly speaking).

Since garlic has antioxidant properties and at the same time stimulates the activities of the body’s immune defense cells, then you can now understand how garlic can help boost your body’s immune system.

  • Can Garlic Cure Toothache?

Yes; garlic can cure tootaches. Whenever you have a toothache, cut up a clove of garlic and apply it on the affected tooth/ teeth and gums. Within no time, you will be relieved from the pain that came with the toothache.

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What Makes Garlic a Natural Antibiotic-Garlic Vs Penicillin

An individual, who takes 15 standard units of penicillin, will experience or get the same results as those of a person who takes 1 mg of allicin, sulfur’s active compound.

When garlic is chopped or chewed, allicin is produced. Now allicin is not only capable of killing bacteria and germs, but also preventing them from multiplying in the body of an infected person.

Garlic as a Repellant To Vampires, Draculas and Witches?

With the advent of television drama series such as The Vampire Diaries and the like, and with various scenes in the program showing vampires being repulsed by garlic, people tend to start talking of such events.

For this reason therefore, everyone has been curious to find out if indeed it is true that garlic repels vampires and other evil spirits.

Well, clearly, there isn’t a definite answer to this question but what I would say is that it depends on whether you are superstitious or not.

There is a group of people who claim that evil spirits in general hate the smell let alone smell of garlic, but since there isn’t any scientific proof to these claims, I cannot really back them up.

Folks, I believe you have seen the several health benefits of garlic, some of which I am particularly sure that you had never heard of before.

For that reason therefore, I challenge you today to make it your goal to try taking garlic on a daily basis in case you want to live a healthier life.

Don't forget to share this good news on the the health benefits of garlic with family and friends. Enjoy.

Health Benefits Of Garlic Carl8033 2013-09-13 5.0


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