Garlic is one of the oldest known cultivated plants, and Ancient manuscripts tell of the use of garlic in China 4,000 years ago. Garlic is a fantastic source of vitamin B6, as well as a very good source of selenium, manganese and vitamin C. It’s also a good source of calcium, phosphorus, iron, potassium and copper. South Korea, China, India, the United States and Spain are among the leading commercial growers of garlic. Here are 4 health benefits of taking garlic.
1 – Garlic and Cholesterol Levels
Research has shown that garlic lowers overall cholesterol levels while improving HDL cholesterol levels, an important protective factor for prevention of heart disease. One study revealed that LDL cholesterol levels were reduced by 11 % after 12 weeks of garlic supplementation. Another study revealed that individuals taking garlic extract for 16 weeks had reduced their cholesterol levels by 12 % and their triglycerides by 17 %.
2 – Garlic Prevents Infections
French chemist and microbiologist Louis Pasteur demonstrated in the laboratory that garlic is an effective antibacterial. The antimicrobial activity is due to the compound allicin, which has been shown to be effective against common infections like flu and colds, Candida yeast and stomach viruses, as well as against powerful pathogenic microbes, such as botulism and tuberculosis. Studies have shown that the quantity of allicin produced in a single clove of garlic after chopping to be effective against killing methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus and vancomycin-resistant Enterococci.
3 – Garlic Helps With Pre-Eclampsia
Research has found that garlic could help to improve the birth weight of babies and reduce the risk of pre-eclampsia complications at birth.
4 – Garlic Neutralises Cancer
Nearly 30 studies have indicated garlic has anti-cancer properties. These studies link garlic and the prevention of stomach and prostate cancers, and reveal that as little as 2 or more helpings of garlic a week could offer protection against cancer of the colon. Substances present in garlic have been proven to protect cells in the colon from the toxicity of cancer causing chemicals, as well as to stop the growth of cancer cells as soon as they start to develop.