Garlic or Allium Sativam is a bulbous plant belonging to onion family. It is used both for culinary and medicinal purposes. It has a pungent odor, and it tastes bitter.
Garlic contains a sulfur compound Allicin and diallyl sulfide. Other than the sulfur compounds, it is also rich in vitamin C, vitamin B6, selenium and manganese. It has rich anti-bacterial, anti-viral, antifungal and antioxidant properties.
Other than a spread on the bread and pizza or simply being an herb to add flavor to cooking, Garlic offers numerous health benefits. Both raw and pickled garlic are used to cure many health conditions for both men and women.
1. Garlic Improves Iron Metabolism
Iron is an essential element to fight diseases. Balanced Iron content in the blood is measured as hemoglobin range slightly different for men and women. Low hemoglobin number reflects Iron deficiency which can cause Anemia and several other conditions and diseases. Various iron rich green vegetables and foods such as spinach, kale and broccoli etc. can help to regain balance of Iron.
Iron absorption in the blood is assisted by garlic. A protein called Ferroportin helps circulate iron between cells and the blood. Garlic helps the body's production of Ferroportin.
2. Garlic Prevents Cold
Most cold catching instances are due to reduction in body’s immunity at the time of attacks.
Garlic contains antioxidants to improve your immunity. Consume garlic daily and protect yourself from potential cold attacks.
If you have got the cold then also garlic can help. Prepare garlic tea and sip it. The antibacterial capabilities of garlic will treat your cold.
3. Garlic Reduces Cholesterol and Other Heart benefits
Garlic has been researched for its cardiovascular benefits. Though Cholesterol provides an indication of heart health, it is not the single contributory factor of atherosclerosis and heart attacks and even heart failure.
Garlic does moderately reduce cholesterol and particularly the low density lipoproteins such as triglycerides. But, the biggest benefit of garlic comes from its ability to reduce inflammatory and oxidative stress that are the main cause of atherosclerosis and blood circulation problems.
The sulfur compounds in garlic reduce the oxidative stress and the other compounds such as thiacremonone give it anti-inflammatory characteristics.
Garlic also protects blood vessels to get blocked, and it prevents the formation of blood clots which are the major causes of heart attacks.
Allicin in Garlic helps reduce blood pressure by unnecessary contractions of the blood vessels. H2S ( Hydrogen Sulfide) helps dilating the blood thus preventing rise in blood pressure.
4. Garlic Reduces Arthritis Pain
Anti-inflammatory compounds in garlic benefit our musculoskeletal system. Specifically, diallyl sulfide (DAS) and thiacremonone in garlic are responsible for anti-arthritic properties.
In fact it is possible to reduce the spread of arthritis by consuming garlic extracts or garlic pills.
5. Garlic Prevents Cancer
A moderate consumption of garlic 2-3 times a week can reduce the risk of two cancer types—colorectal and renal cancer. On the other hand, high intake of garlic, one or two times daily, can reduce the risk of all types of cancers except prostate cancer in men and breast cancer in women.
Many researchers are working on anti-cancer properties of garlic. Though there are no conclusive benefits on cancer treatment, prevention has been widely linked to consumption of garlic.
6. Garlic Can Prevent Hair Loss
Garlic contains Allicin and all other onion family foods containing allicin are good source to prevent hair loss.
You can use garlic in two different ways to prevent hair loss.
You can directly rub slices of garlic on the scalp. Cut 2-3 mm thin vertical slices from cloves of garlic. Immediately rub them on the scalp by squeezing. This helps garlic extract to get inside the pores in the scalp.
You can use garlic in oil. Peel 4 garlic cloves and squeeze them in fine size by garlic squeezer. Add the squeezed garlic to a tablespoon of olive oil or coconut oil. Mix it well and massage on your scalp.
7. Garlic Can Clear acne
If you have acne, tried every possible remedy and still not satisfied, then use garlic in almost the same ways as explained above to use it on the scalp. No don’t worry; it will not grow hair on your face.
Wash and rinse your face. Dry it with a cloth. Cut 4 slices from a peeled clove of garlic. Keep a slice on individual acne or a cluster of acne and press it gently to let the extract from the slice to cover the acne affected area. That is it. Wash and rinse your face after 30 minutes.
The anti-bacterial properties and sulfur compounds in Garlic help to get rid of acne.
8. Garlic Oil Soothes Psoriasis
The scaly patches of psoriasis are painful and scratchy. You can sooth your psoriasis with garlic oil.
Garlic has high anti-inflammatory properties which help in alleviating the pain. You can also use cut garlic clove slices on the affected area. This may burn initially but finally relieve you from scratching and pain.
9. Garlic Treats Toenail Fungus
Garlic is antifungal. You can apply garlic on the toenail or add garlic extract in slightly warm water and dip your feet in it. Keep it there for 30 minutes.
If your toenail fungus is old then you may have to cover the nail with garlic squeeze and wrap the toe with bandage. Keep it overnight. Wash and clean your toe. You have to do it daily and it will take months before the fungus disappears. You must do it under the supervision of a doctor to ensure that the surrounding skin doesn’t get affected.