If garlic had been created in the laboratory instead of by nature, it would probably be a high-priced prescription drug. Garlic is one of the oldest known medicinal plants, and it’s been credited with fighting heart disease, lowering blood pressure and helping to fight off colds.
In fact, garlic has been used medicinally for at least 3,000 years, but until relatively recently its benefits were considered little more than folklore. According to a report in the Journal of the American Medical Association (Nov. 28, 1990;264:2614), its therapeutic roles have been described in more than 1,000 scientific studies.
Most of the modern research on garlic has concentrated on its ability to lower cholesterol and blood pressure as well as offering protection against strokes and heart disease.
The following is a more detailed account of what garlic does for various organs in the human body:
1. Protection of the liver from toxic substances
Garlic activates the cells of the liver and thereby protects the liver from toxic substances; it also rejuvenates a tired liver and promotes its normal functioning.
2. Improvement of blood circulation
When allicin is heated in the process of cooking the garlic, a substance called ?ajoene” is formed. This substance has a suppressive effect on thrombi and blood cholesterol, so it is effective for the treatment of atherosclerosis and thrombosis.
3. Regulation of stomach function
Allicin promotes the secretion of gastric juices by stimulating the mucous membranes of the stomach; furthermore, it combines with proteins which can reduce excessive activity of the stomach. In addition, allicin reglates the functioning of the stomach by activating the large intestine and thus cure both constipation and diarrhea.
4. Promotion of insulin secretion
Allicin combines with vitamin B1 (thiamine) to activate the function of the pancreas and thus promote insulin secretion. As a result, garlic is effective in the prevention or the cure of diabetes that is caused by a lack of insulin or by the defective functioning of the pancreas.
5. Normalization of blood circulation
Because it stimulates the brain nerves and controls the workings of the heart at a constant level, garlic stabilizes blood pressure. It is also capable of dissolving cholesterol and fatty substances inside blood vessels and therefore refreshing cells and the blood inside the body.
Today, there is worldwide scientific evidence to support the many health benefits that can be derived from the daily consumption of garlic.
- Extensive tests on humans have concluded that a regular intake of garlic can:
- Lower total cholesterol (but raise the good-type HDL cholesterol)
- Produce more “natural killer” cells in the blood that will tackle infections and tumours
- Lower blood pressure
- Reduce the risk of blood clots (that are responsible for most heart attacks and strokes)
- Destroy infection causing viruses and bacteria
- Garlic is classified as both an herb and a vegetable. It can be found in products ranging from ice cream to dry rubs; the versatility of this herb is seemingly endless.