Who is not familiar with Garlic? The aroma that garlic brings in food is just tempting and enticing. It’s an ancient belief that garlic contains medicinal benefits. Well, this belief has been proven by science long ago. While we use garlic in cooking for its irresistible smell and taste, garlic is believed to be a larger part of medicine in ancient and modern history.
A brief history of garlic:
The ancient Greek physician Hippocrates, known today as ‘the father of Western medicine’ prescribed garlic for a wide range of medical conditions and illnesses such as: respiratory problems, parasites, poor digestion, and fatigue. So, what is in garlic that makes it so important? Well, to answer that we are going to use some scientific terms. Garlic is rich in the sulfur-containing compound, Allicin, which has anti-bacterial and anti-fungal properties, making it one of the most beneficial ingredients.
Some fun facts of garlic:
- Garlic comes under the onion family and it usually consists of 10-20 smaller sections called the cloves.
- Garlic is rich in vitamin C, vitamin B6, and manganese and low in calories.
- Garlic works best when it is consumed raw.
- When garlic is roasted or cooked on higher temperatures, it kills the allicin in it making it almost useless for its health benefits. So it is advised to add garlic in the food when you’re almost done cooking.
Some health benefits of garlic:
- Can combat sickness and common cold: Garlic is known for boosting immunity that can fight off bacteria causing cold and sickness.
- Help during Hypertension: Active compounds in garlic can help reducing blood pressure thus helping those with high blood pressure or hypertension
- Prevention of heart diseases: Due to the anti-oxidant properties of Allicin, garlic helps in lowering cholesterol levels
- Lower risk of cancer: People who consume garlic in their day to day life are supposed to be at a lower risk of cancer. Garlic strengthens the body against cancer.
- Purifies blood: Garlic is known to cleanse the blood and flush out toxins. Thus giving you a healthy body in and out.
- Lowers the level of Hip osteoarthritis: People who intake garlic on a regular basis are known to be less affected by the early osteoarthritis in the hip joint.
- Help Prevent Alzheimer’s Disease and Dementia: Garlic intake can also reduce the risk of common brain diseases like Alzheimer’s disease and dementia.
- Improves athletic performances: Garlic is known to be one of the early ‘performance-enhancing’ supplement. Most notably, garlic was given to Olympic athletes in ancient Greece.
- May Improve Bone Health: Garlic can minimize bone loss in females by increasing the level of estrogen.
- Works as an anti-inflammatory: Garlic is rich in anti-inflammatory quality. Thus, rubbing garlic oil on sore and inflamed joints can help a lot.
- Asthma patients are advised not to consume garlic as it may have side-effects.
- Intake of garlic should be avoided before surgeries or medical operations.
- Do not take more than 2-3 garlic cloves in a day, if otherwise, consult a doctor.