Health Benefits of Garlic and How It Improves the Immunity System
A few cloves of garlic, either roasted in cooking oil or raw and chopped, can offer enormous health benefits that rarely any other vegetable can boast of. Yes, contrary to popular belief, garlic is a vegetable, not an herb or spice.
Since time immemorial, people from every race and culture hailed it as a superfood. They believed its regular use could aid a long healthy life. From a magic remedy of plague to the holy grail that keeps vampires away, garlic was mentioned in ancient literature as something that came straight from the garden of Eden. Although we can’t vouch for its effectiveness against vampires or other mythical evil powers, here is why you must include garlic in your daily diet.
Various Health Benefits of Garlic
Garlic oil has anti-inflammatory properties. Research shows that it works wonders when rubbed gently on sore muscles or inflamed joints.
Improves Cardiovascular Conditions:
It is not yet proved with sufficient data on whether garlic has any significant impact on cardiovascular health. However, several studies already indicated that it could help to prevent clogged arteries and irregular blood pressure. Many scientists believe that the red blood cells in our body convert the garlic’s sulfur ingredient into a gas named hydrogen sulfide. This gas stretches the blood vessels, aiding in smoother blood circulation, and controlling blood pressure. As per the FDA’s recommendation, one should add at least 4 grams, which is a large-sized garlic clove, in their daily meal. It will result in reducing the risk of developing heart diseases.
Healthy Skin and Hair:
Garlic comes with potent antibacterial properties that can heal skin rash and kill the bacteria that cause acne. There are some studies that show applying raw garlic can reduce pimples effectively. However, some people can experience a burning sensation on their skin, so keep that in mind. Garlic oil also believed to prevent some scalp conditions, including dandruff, and promote healthy hair.
Kills Germs in Food:
Garlic’s antibacterial properties kill various bacteria in food. Bacteria like E.coli and salmonella can be present in food items, and if not cooked properly, they can cause life-threatening conditions. Fresh garlic cloves are known to kill such bacteria, making your food more healthy. However, one shouldn’t replace standard food handling and sanitizing protocol with garlic.
Can be Beneficial in Treating Athlete’s Foot:
Garlic can prevent fungus build-up, too. Athlete’s foot is a specific type of fungal infection that typically occurs between toes due to mainly excessive sweating caused by tight shoes or socks. Rubbing fresh garlic cloves or garlic oil on the affected area can effectively reduce the infection.
How Garlic Boosts the Immunity System:
Garlic is a powerful immunity booster. Its impressive germ-fighting ability makes it an essential ingredient in many cuisines all over the world. Fresh cloves of whole garlic have a compound named allicin. This compound gets converted into another element known as allicin when we chew or crush its cloves. It’s the primary active component in garlic that releases sulfur, which is the main cause of its pungent taste and smell. This allicin is not a very stable ingredient, and soon after its formation, allicin starts to turn into multiple other Sulphur-rich compounds. These are the elements that provide the medicinal profile garlic boasts. In some researches, scientists found these compounds can increase the infection-fighting abilities of human white blood cells significantly.
White blood cells are the frontline warriors of our immunity system. They fight against the viruses and bacteria that cause various diseases in the human body. This also includes the seasonal flu and the common cold. Keeping garlic as a part of our diet means we are strengthening our white blood cells and making our overall immunity system further robust and more capable in the war against germs.
While having raw garlic is the best way to reap its health benefits, many can’t bear its distinctive smell and taste while fresh. They can eat garlic by mincing it to put in hot green tea while mixing a bit of honey to make its taste somewhat tolerable. However, you want to make sure not to heat it beyond 140 degrees Fahrenheit. Otherwise, it can destroy allicin’s medicinal properties.