One of the benefits of eating garlic probably are not the aroma it leaves in your mouth after eating it but it is thought to be an aphrodisiac. Strange? There is some science behind it though as garlic has shown to improve blood circulation what is especially important for sexual health of men. Garlic has been used as an ingredient for centuries in traditional and conventional medicine. Usually the extracts from garlic are used in combinations with other substances.
The benefits of garlic (Allium sativum) are very similar to those of onions as they come from the same family. Both garlic and onions have the ability to prevent the formation of cholesterol gallstones through enhancing the metabolism of cholesterol. Cholesterol is naturally occurring type of fat in our bodies and normally it doesn’t do any harm. Cholesterol exists also in other animals which we consume as food – beef, chicken, dairy etc. If the consumption is greater than our bodies are able to metabolise (break down), cholesterol starts to accommodate in the blood. If the reserves of cholesterol increase even more, smaller blood vessels (capillaries) and other ducts start to clot and obstruct places in our bodies were other nutrients should be able to access freely to not cause any damage. Garlic (and onions) has the ability to produce enzymes for more active cholesterol metabolism. It doesn’t mean that you should now combine all animal origin food with garlic. Right thing to do would be reducing your overall cholesterol intake in the first place.
Good for the heart
Garlic is commonly known to be beneficial for cardiovascular system – reduces blood pressure through relaxing the blood vessels. This reduces risk of hypertension and heart attack. Overconsumption of garlic though will increase risk for blood thinning so the best is to keep everything in balance. When talking about combining a recent study has shown that garlic is able to break down the cancerogens of meat when prepared together which is good news for someone who likes their weekly steak. Although we will post an article about benefits of eating meat, we should consider that animal protein has also bad impact on hormonal activity which is one of the causes of breast cancer.
Allium which gives the garlic eater a rather unpleasant mouth odour is one of the actual benefits of garlic. Alium is said to prevent osteoporosis which is still a little researched disease. The research in London was monitoring eating habits of healthy women subjects. The ones who had greater intake of allium rich vegetables were more protected against osteoporosis than others. A normal western diet usually provides enough minerals and prevents from suffering mineral deficiencies. Vegetarians though have much more limited source of these Iron and Zinc as they usually origin from animals. Eating garlic might benefit the bioavailability of these micronutrients from cereals. Vegetarian females should be especially careful with keeping their Iron levels sufficient as monthly a woman looses around 10-80ml of blood.
From our childhood we probably all were given extra garlic in the times of flu by our parents. They were right to do so. Garlic provides many essential micronutrients like vitamins A, B, C, selenium, iodine, potassium, iron, zinc, calcium and magnesium. These ingredients act as enzymes for metabolism. It is proven that intake of these from natural products rather than supplements is much more beneficial as more of them will be absorbed for the right reasons. Garlic eaters though will most benefit if the consumption is regular independently from the health status. One clove of garlic a day is not much but enough to help you to prevent many diseases. Benefits of eating any food in any way are mostly preventative rather than curing.
Benefits of eating garlic:
- Strengthens immune system
- Prevents cardiovascular illnesses
- Contributes in absorption of Iron and Zinc
- Prevents cholesterol build-up in ducts
- Possibly prevents osteoporosis
- Prevents cancer
- Contains antioxidants
- Lowers the bad effects of eating meat