Garlic is the single most versatile, powerful and widely used medicinal plant in the world. A relative of onions, spring onion, leeks and chives, it has been used for over 5,000 years and is a key plant in Chinese Medicine.
Slaves building the pyramids were paid in garlic, as were Roman soldiers. Garlic is mentioned in the Bible and the Talmud. Hippocrates, Galen, Pliny the Elder, and Dioscorides all mention the use of garlic for many conditions, including parasites, respiratory problems, poor digestion, and low energy. Its use in China was first mentioned in A.D. 510. Louis Pasteur studied the antibacterial action of garlic in 1858.
What it does
Garlic contains a sulphur containing compound called allicin, which gives garlic its distinctive odour and much of its medicinal properties. It also contains amino acids, B vitamins and minerals. Garlic is anti-bacterial, anti-viral, anti-fungal, expectorant and antioxidant. It has been shown to be more potent than many commonly used anti-fungal agents and research has demonstrated garlic’s potent anti-fungal activity against cryptococcal meningitis, one of the most harmful fungal infections.
Studies as long ago as 1944, showed that garlic inhibited the growth of Staphylococcus, Streptococcus, Bacillus, Brucella and Vibrio. More recently, research has shown an effect against E Coli, Proteus vulgaris, Salmonella, Citrobacter species, Klebsiella and mycobacteria. Studies have even demonstrated garlic’s efficacy in inhibiting the growth of some bacteria that had become resistant to one or more antibiotics.
Herpes simplex types 1 & 2, parainfluenza virus type 3, vaccinia virus, vesicular stomatitis virus and human rhinovirus type 2 have all been destroyed by the application of garlic.
Garlic supplementation lowers total serum cholesterol and improves the ratio between HDL and LDL. There is also evidence that garlic possesses a blood pressure lowering effect, an attribute that is mostly linked to the herb’s ability to reduce platelet aggregation.
|Bacterial infections||Respiratory congestion||MRSA|
|Cardiovascular support||High blood pressure||Coughs|
Garlic combines will with the immune boosting herb echinacea.
Garlic cloves can be crushed and used in cooking or applied topically to several skin disorders.
Odourless garlic capsules have had many of the medicinal compounds removed to eliminate the pungent smell of garlic. These products are only of value as a preventive agent.
Whole bulb garlic tablets contain high levels of allicin and all the key sulphur compounds. It is useful for lowering blood pressure and cholesterol levels, fighting candida and protecting against heart disease.
Aged garlic tablets contain very low levels of allicin making it virtually odourless, but do deliver high levels of S-allcysteine which is a powerful antioxidant and immune booster. It is useful for lowering blood pressure and cholesterol levels and fighting candida.
Regularly eating large amounts of fresh garlic may be irritating to the digestive system of some people.
Not recommended in large quantities if taking the prescribed anticoagulant drug Warfarin or 2 to 3 weeks before surgery, due to its blood thinning effects.
Garlic appears to be safe during pregnancy and breast-feeding. In fact, research shows that babies like breast milk better from mothers who eat garlic.