For thousands of years, the prophylactic
and healing potential of garlic has been recognized by Asians and
Westerners. Historically, people have used it to treat everything
ranging from infections, digestion problems and wounds. In World War
2, when soldiers ran out of antibiotics, they have been known to make
use of garlic cloves to treat their wounds. Today in Europe, America,
Japan, China and many other countries, garlic formulae are sold as
drugs for a variety of ailments.
A lot of research has been done on this
amazing pungent bulb and it has shown that garlic can help boost
immunity and reduce high levels of blood sugar. Dozens of medical
benefits have been attributed to garlic.
Studies have shown that garlic lowers
cholesterol levels and thins the blood. This may help to prevent high
blood pressure, heart disease and stroke.
In the laboratory, garlic appears to
inhibit the growth of cancer cells. People who consume lots of garlic
appear to have lower stomach and colon cancers than those who eat less
In a study at an American City Hospital,
it was found that garlic was successful in killing many strains of
bacteria taken from those with ear, nose and throat infections.
Scientists have identified two important
ways that garlic helps protect the heart. First, garlic contains many
sulfur compounds which appear to promote smooth blood flow by
preventing platelets from sticking together and clotting. In a study,
researchers gave 50 men with high cholesterol garlic extract. When the
men's blood was examined, it is found that the rate at which platelets
stuck together had dropped significantly. Sulfur compounds in the
garlic are potent. They thin the blood and help to prevent a heart
attack or stroke.
Secondly, garlic is also good for the
heart because it lowers cholesterol levels and blood fats called
triglycerides in the blood stream. Researches have found that eating,
fresh or in powdered form lower total cholesterol by 12 to 15 percent.
Studies have shown that including garlic
in the diet may help to prevent and treat cancer by preventing cell
changes, by stopping tumors from growing or by killing the harmful
cells. A compound in garlic appears to stop the metabolic action that
causes a healthy cell to become cancerous. A substance called DADS in
garlic seems to inhibit the growth of cancer cells by interfering with
their ability to divide and multiply. Garlic contains compounds that
help prevent nitrites from transforming into harmful compounds that
can trigger cancerous changes in the body.
The benefits of eating garlic aren't
seen only in the laboratory. Researchers have noted that people who
eat a lot of garlic are less prone to cancer than those who eat less.