Not only is it great for adding flavour to your food or to fend off lurking vampires, garlic has an array of health benefits. The vegetable has been highly regarded for its medicinal properties for centuries, and many of its uses in ancient times are still relevant to today’s world.
Many of garlic’s benefits are due to presence of Allicin, a compound containing sulphur with anti-bacterial and anti-fungal properties. Allicin helps keep the digestive system clean by flushing out toxins as well as building immunity against common colds and helping to prevent heart-related illnesses by clearing blocked arteries.
Garlic is closely related to onion, shallots and leeks and is highly nutritious yet low in calories. Each clove of garlic is packed with manganese, vitamin B6, vitamin C, selenium as well as decent amounts of calcium, copper, potassium, phosphorus, iron and vitamin B1.
Some benefits of garlic include:
Garlic can prevent and treat common colds. Research shows that taking a daily garlic supplement reduced the number of colds by 63% compared to a placebo over a 12-week period. There was also a reduction in the length of cold symptoms, from 5 days to just 1.5 days with the garlic supplement.
Consuming garlic on a daily basis can help to reduce cholesterol levels as it contains anti-oxidant properties, research suggests that it can reduce cholesterol by approximately 10-15%.
Other studies show that garlic supplements have had a significant impact on reducing blood pressure in those with hypertension. In one particular study, garlic extract was just as effective at reducing blood pressure over a 24 week period as the drug Atenolol. Researchers believe sulphur in garlic is turned into hydrogen sulphide gas by red blood cells, which expands in the blood vessels making it easier to regulate blood pressure.
How to get the most out of garlic
Although we all know garlic makes a great addition to any pasta, curry, stir-fry – in fact almost any savoury dish – cooking garlic changes its pH balance and therefore its effectiveness. You’ll get the most out of raw garlic, particularly if left for a few minutes after being minced, crushed or chopped, as this gives the allicin time to start working. However if you don’t fancy snacking on raw garlic, you could try a supplement instead. Such as our Garlic Extract – Formulated with Garlixir®
Garlixir® is produced using a proprietary lipid extraction process, combining the traditional Ayurveda system with new-age technology. This process helps in masking the characteristic strong taste of Garlic, while retaining its integrity with respect to its key metabolites responsible for supporting health.