5 powerful reasons to start eating garlic TODAY
(NaturalHealth365) You can’t follow a Mediterranean diet or enjoy a savory Provençal meal without garlic. And, as it turns out, if you’re trying to avoid chronic health issues like heart disease or diabetes, you should be eating this powerful herb on a regular basis.
Garlic, a member of the onion family, has a centuries-long history of medicinal use on a global scale. Greek physician Hippocrates was even reported to “prescribe” garlic as a treatment for everything from breathing problems to parasites.
But you don’t have to rely on the word of 5,000+ years of history. Modern day science has plenty to say about the astounding health benefits of this famed antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, anti-microbial, and even antitumor herb.
5 science-backed ways garlic protects your health
1. Protects cardiovascular health. A 2007 study published in the Proceedings From the National Academy of Sciences found that consuming garlic boosts the production of a bioactive compound called hydrogen sulfide.
Hydrogen sulfide functions as a powerful antioxidant and assists with cellular signaling to increase circulation and relax blood vessels. This could explain why garlic has long been known as a natural treatment and prevention for heart disease, which includes atherosclerosis, coronary artery disease, heart attack, and stroke.
2. Naturally treats metabolic syndrome. A 2017 study published in the Journal of Dietary Supplements found that consuming crushed raw garlic significantly improved fasting blood sugar, waist circumference, cholesterol levels (both by lowering “bad” triglyceride levels and raising “good” HDL levels), and blood pressure in people with metabolic syndrome.
Metabolic syndrome (aka syndrome X) is a deadly collection of co-morbidities including high cholesterol, high blood sugar, high blood pressure, and excessive abdominal fat.
3. Cuts the risk of stomach cancer (and others). In a 2011 meta-analysis published in the journal Gastroenterology, reviewers found that consuming a high amount of vegetables from the Allium family – which includes garlic, onions, chives, and leeks – significantly reduces a person’s risk for stomach cancer.
Many other studies have also found that garlic consumption can reduce the risk of cancer in the brain, lung, esophagus, and prostate.
4. Reduces the risk of osteoarthritis. A 2010 cross-sectional study published in BMC Musculoskeletal Disorders found that women who regularly consumed garlic and other Allium veggies had a significantly reduced risk of hip osteoarthritis.
The authors hypothesized that this was due to a compound in garlic called diallyl disulphide, which is believed to repress enzymes that break down skeletal bone matrixes.
5. Improves diabetes. Reviewers of a 2017 meta-analysis published in the journal Food & Nutrition Research evaluated 9 randomized controlled trials looking at garlic consumption in people with type 2 diabetes.
They found statistically significant improvements in blood sugar and other key diabetic biomarkers when the subjects took garlic supplements (featuring a compound known as allicin), with daily doses ranging from 0.05 g to 1.5 g.
The research doesn’t end there, either. Other reported benefits include a reduced risk of preterm delivery, alcohol-induced liver damage, and even the common cold. And while some of these studies aren’t quite as robust as others, it’s promising to see how a completely natural plant has the potential to deliver such powerful health benefits.
How to enjoy garlic and optimize its health benefits
You may be wondering now: How much garlic do I need to eat to actually get all the benefits out of it?
The exact amount isn’t known for sure yet. The 2007 study from the Proceedings From the National Academy of Sciences featured a concentration of garlic extract equivalent to about two medium-sized cloves of garlic per day.
That may sound like a lot, but keep in mind that garlic can seamlessly fit into almost any meal (think homemade salad dressings, hummus, meat, fish, poultry, stir-fry, omelets, and more). And, believe it or not, per capita consumption of garlic in countries like Korea, China, and Italy is as high as 8 to 12 cloves per day!
To start getting the most out of this powerful and pungent bulb, try the following tips:
- Eat it raw if you can. Yes, it has a super strong taste and odor, but research – such as a August 2013 study published in the journal Food and Chemical Toxicology – indicates that garlic loses its powerful anti-inflammatory properties once its been heated.
- If you are going to cook garlic, chop, slice, or smash the cloves at least 10 minutes prior to putting it on the heat. Preparing garlic in this way initiates an enzymatic process that maximizes its health-boosting benefits.
- The pantry or a cupboard in your kitchen (room temperature places which remain cool and dark) is the perfect place to store garlic.
- Chew on raw mint or try eating lettuce, fennel seeds, or apples after a garlicky meal to avoid the dreaded “garlic breath.”
- Don’t love the taste of fresh garlic or can’t stomach it due to indigestion? Consider trying a high quality aged garlic extract.
One important word to the wise: before adding more garlic to your diet, be sure to chat with your doctor first. Garlic and garlic extracts may interact with certain heart medications, including blood thinners.
Sources for this article include:
Food & Nutrition
Natural Health 365
Natural Health 365 is a premium source of trending and popular health-related news, science, testimony & research articles on the most up to date and relevant natural health information. The Food & Nutrition articles found herein are meant to inform and advise our site visitors on eating healthy, nutritious foods and safely using supplements and vitamins to achieve optimal health.
Join thousands of daily visitors staying informed and involved on Natural Health 365! We seek out scientific solutions with proven results and it is our mission to keep you informed! Articles range in topic from the cancer fighting qualities of Olive Oil, to the remarkably high concentration of anti-oxidants found in blueberries, to how to make your own almond milk, to a nutritional comparison of organic vs conventional produce, to an analysis of the health benefits of tree nuts. You can find all of the Food News Articles here
Read Some of Our Most Popular Articles
Artichokes, Olive Oil, Almond Milk, Blueberries
Food News is one of our major post categories on www.naturalhealth365.com and contains over 350 articles that cover a wide range of subjects; including but not limited to…
- Fruits and Vegetables
- Organic Foods
- Healthy Fats
- Non GMO
- Vitamin D
- Vitamin C
- Health News
- Coconut Oil
- Healthy Eating
- Nutrition News
- Processed Foods
- Saturated Fats
More Food & Nutrition Articles
Fresh Organic Produce Fights Cancer, Susan G. Komen on Organic Foods, Hemp Seeds for Inflammation, Pau D’Arco For Improved Immunity
In addition to exploring health benefits of certain foods, vitamins and supplements, we also aim to connect healthy eating and balanced consumption of dietary supplements to long-lasting health and adding healthy, happy years to your life. For example, did you know that eating Granny Smith Apples on a regular basis can reduce your chance of building up unhealthy gut yeast? Or that ingesting ground hemp seeds can significantly reduce inflammation throughout the body? Perhaps you didn’t know that Fresh Organic Produce has been found to have higher concentrations of key, cancer-fighting anti-oxidants and vitamins than conventional produce? You can find all of that information and more right here on Natural Health 365.
We’d love to know what you’re thinking! Please join the conversation on Facebook, post comments here on the website and feel free to reach out to us if you have any questions.
Please use and share the articles you find here with your friends, family and peers.
The post 5 powerful reasons to start eating garlic TODAY appeared first on Natural Health 365.