Thursday, November 29, 2012


So you think garlic gives you nothing but bad breath? Well, OK, it does, but it's also one of the healthiest foods you can eat. The therapeutic qualities of garlic are nothing new. Sanskrit records reveal that garlic remedies were pressed into service in India 5,000 years ago, while Chinese medicine has recognized garlic's powers for over 3,000 years. 
Fleming's discovery of penicillin in 1928 largely took over from garlic, World War One overwhelmed the capacity and garlic was again, the antibiotic of choice.

Garlic was rare in traditional English cuisine (though it is said to have been grown in England before 1548), and has been a much more common ingredient in Mediterranean Europe. Builders of the ancient pyramids were said to eat garlic daily for enhanced endurance and strength. Garlic was placed by the ancient Greeks on the piles of stones at cross-roads, as a supper for Hecate. Roman emperors couldn't eat enough of it, as it was considered an antidote to poisons which were very popular in certain political circles of the time.

Studies by competent multi-degreed scientists have shown beyond any reasonable doubt that consuming garlic generally has the following physical effects:

High Blood Pressure: Garlic (Allium sativum) is one of the world's oldest medicinal plants. There is some evidence that using adequate amounts of this so-called "stinking rose" is effective in lowering blood pressure and possibly cholesterol levels.

Headache Prevention: Similar to aspirin, garlic has a blood thinning quality. This quality prevents platelets from banding together.

Cold and Flu: Modern studies have shown that garlic is similar to a powerful antibiotic. Many people take garlic during cold and flu symptoms to help their bodies stay healthy. The key here is to take the garlic before a cold because it will help fight the cold but won't cure it.

Cardiovascular benefits: Multiple scientific studies have demonstrated powerful garlic health benefits that can prevent heart disease. Garlic reduces free radicals that cause the oxidation of cholesterol and cell membrane damage, the real cause of arteriosclerosis and heart disease. Studies suggest that garlic prevents buildup of plaque in arteries, and may even reduce it. In Germany, garlic supplements are licensed as drugs for the treatment of arteriosclerosis. Garlic also assists in metabolizing fat. It increases breakdowns of lipids and enhances elimination of fat from the body.

Anti-Cancer: Studies have shown that benefits of garlic extend to the prevention of cancer. Although scientists don't know why exactly garlic has an ability to prevent cancer, an examination of the amazing phytonutrient content of garlic would leave us with good reason to believe that garlic would be a potent anti-cancer food.

Antibiotic: Garlic is a powerful antioxidant with an amazing list of healing properties: it destroys bacteria, fungi, parasites and viruses. The allicin in raw garlic has been shown to kill 23 types of bacteria, including salmonella and staphylococcus. Garlic also destroys viral infections such as chicken pox, measles, mumps, scarlet fever and others.

Boosts Immune System: Garlic is a powerful immune system booster. It increases the production of interferon (an antiviral compound), which improves the action of your white blood cells. Interferon and white blood cells are critical components of your body's immune system.

Diabetes: Garlic health benefits also extend to diabetes. As mentioned above, garlic contains a chemical compound called allicin. Allicin combines with vitamin B1 (thiamine) to stimulate the pancreas to release insulin. Garlic can be of great benefit in treating people suffering from insulin-dependent diabetes.

Aids Digestion: The most common active ingredient in garlic, allicin, stimulates the secretion of digestive juices in the stomach. It also interacts with certain proteins to help provide relief from both constipation and diarrhea.

Mosquito Repellent: There are some studies that suggest that garlic keeps mosquitoes from biting. While there are skeptics out there, it may not hurt to take a garlic supplement or eat a garlic-filled meal before heading out to mosquito country.

How much Garlic should I have?
Recommended Dosage: One clove of garlic weighs more or less 1.5 gm.
Adults: one clove of fresh garlic, two to three times a day.
Children: 1/4 to 1/2 clove, one to three times a day.

Therapeutic Dose: The therapeutic dose of garlic is four to ten grams per day, to be divided into three equal doses, taken once you are half-way in your meal to prevent stomach distress. Hypertensive may require higher dosage.

To get the full health benefits of raw garlic, whether in salads, as tea, or in food, it's important you eat less refined, processed and canned foods, and more foods in as close to their natural state as possible.

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