The scientific name for garlic is Allium Sativum. It’s a species in the onion family of alliaceae. Close relatives of this herb are the onion, chive, leek and shallot. Throughout history garlic has been used in meal preparation but also for medicinal reasons. Garlic may have a strong aroma but it’s healthy in so many ways!
Let us count those ways…
1) There is a compound in garlic called ajoene. This compound is a natural antioxidant that has the ability to inhibit the development of clots. What this means is it’s instrumental in preventing both heart disease and strokes. Ajoene has also been shown through studies to slow down or completely stop the spread of cancer cells of the skin when used topically.
2) Garlic has been indicated as an herb that can prevent the development of a variety of cancers. The compounds in it help to prevent prostate cancer. Research studies have also shown that it may reduce the ability of H. pylori in the body. H. pylori are responsible for causing stomach cancer and ulcers.
3) It has also been discovered that garlic may protect against colon cancer. This is believed to be the case because the compounds in it protect the cells in the colon from toxins. If cancer cells do develop in the colon then the garlic helps to inhibit the growth of them. The vitamin C and the mineral selenium that are found in garlic are also beneficial in protecting against cancer that threatens the colon.
4) Research studies have also borne out the fact that when meat is cooked with garlic this reduces the carcinogenic chemicals that are found in the cooked meat. A link between carcinogens in cooked meat and breast cancer has been found. Therefore women who enjoy eating meat would do well to start cooking with garlic.
5) Garlic also has something in it known as allicin. Allicin is good for your health. Studies show that it lowers blood pressure. Studies done on rats have also yielded the result that allicin promotes weight loss. It also lower LDL cholesterol (which is the bad kind!) and raises HDL cholesterol (the good kind).
6) Garlic has antibacterial and anti-viral properties which make it an excellent choice to ward off head colds and prevent the development of the flu. The vitamin C in garlic helps it to fight the onset of a cold or the flu.
7) Garlic reduces inflammation in the body which makes it a good choice for osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis. It also fights the free radicals that are responsible for destroying cells. Garlic is an excellent source of vitamin B6 and is an anti-fungal agent that can be used to treat yeast infections and athlete’s foot.
All in all this herb is quite a fantastic addition to any diet.
Filed Under: Health