Commonly used for seasoning and often referenced in folk tales, garlic is also revered as a medicinal herb. Crushed, minced, sliced or roasted there’s no denying garlic’s distinct flavor, scent and health properties.
Garlic can be eaten raw but most people prefer to add it to cooked foods for a flavorful boost. You can also buy garlic supplements, but the ideal form for taking full advantage of the plant’s health benefits is fresh garlic.
For thousands of years, people have turned to garlic for cures and illness prevention. In modern times, herbalists and scientists have found plenty of evidence that our ancestors were definitely on to something. Today, garlic is praised as a super herb!
Need more convincing? Here are the top five reasons you should consider adding more garlic to your culinary creations and daily diet:
Garlic is a Heart and Circulation Helper
Powerful antioxidants found in garlic can help reduce free radicals in your body. Free radicals are dangerous molecules that can damage tissue and accelerate the aging process. This means that garlic promotes heart health, reduces and repairs damaged cells and supports healthy blood flow throughout your body, resulting in better circulation.
Studies have also shown garlic helps lower blood pressure, reduce LDL cholesterol and help regulate blood sugar. Garlic relaxes the lining of the blood vessels, thereby helping to reduce plaque buildup in your arteries. This, in turn, can help prevent strokes and heart attacks.
Garlic is an Immune System Support Booster
Garlic contains a substance, called Allicin, which is a natural antibiotic. It reduces the ability of germs to grow and produce bacteria in your body. It also boosts your body’s natural defenses helping to rid you allergies, colds, and infections.
Detoxification is a process your body goes through to remove toxins so it can perform better. Garlic aids with detoxification and helps your body’s own defenses work better by improving the function of your immune system.
Garlic May Help Prevent Cancer
Many studies show that a diet rich in garlic can actually help protect your body form various types of cancers, such as colon, breast and prostate cancer. Garlic contains chemical substances that may actually block cancer-activating carcinogens from being formed in the body.
Garlic is a Known Pain Reliever
Garlic is a natural pain killer. It can reduce the pain and itch of bug bites and rashes. To apply to the affected area, cut a clove in half and rub the cut side all around the wound.
It can also lessen the pain of toothaches. In a similar fashion, apply the cut side of the garlic directly onto the tooth and gums. You can also take a clove and break it up a little with a hammer or mallet and put the whole thing right over the affected tooth. Hold this in place for 10-15 minutes until the pain is diminished. Reapply as needed.
Garlic Can Be Used as an Acne Treatment
Many swear by applying a garlic mask for their acne. Garlic has natural antifungal and antibacterial properties which helps in clearing up acne prone skin. Make your own mask by crushing several cloves of garlic and mixing with Manuka honey. Apply directly to your face and let sit for approximately 20 minutes, rinse with warm water, blot dry and apply lotion for sensitive skin.
Bottom line, everyone can benefit from adding a little extra garlic to their diet. The flavor and added health benefits make garlic an ideal pantry staple!
PS: Concerned about garlic breath when dining? You can minimize the effects with a little juice from a lemon wedge or by chewing on a sprig of parsley. Both work well to neutralize the garlic odor in your mouth.
Looking for more information on the potential health benefits of garlic? Check out the National Institute of Health information page at:
Also, try our Tuscany Roasted Red Potatoes for a quick & easy way to add garlic to your dinner tonight: https://www.ruralmom.com/2013/09/roasted-tuscany-style-red-potatoes.html