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4 Reasons to Eat More Garlic

by alive Editorial

4 Reasons to Eat More Garlic

Garlic’s health benefits are many, and they are shown in scientific research. Here are 4 reasons why garlic should be in your daily routine.

For centuries garlic has been used in both medicine and cooking, dating as far back as ancient Egypt. In early 18th-century France when the plague took the lives of many Europeans, gravediggers drank a combination of wine and crushed garlic to ward off the sickness. And later during both World Wars, soldiers were given garlic to fend off gangrene.

Today garlic’s health benefits are many, and they are demonstrated in scientific research. Here are four reasons why garlic should be in your daily routine, either in cooking or with supplementation.

1. Ward off food poisoning
Recently, researchers at Washington State University discovered that garlic is 100 times more effective than two common antibiotics at treating food-borne illness due to Campylobacter bacterium. According to news sources, this bacteria strain is responsible for 2.4 million cases of food-borne illness in the US and causes cramping, diarrhea, fever, and abdominal pain.

2. Protect your heart
Some evidence suggests that garlic has many positive effects on heart health, including lowering blood pressure, slowing atherosclerosis (hardening of the arteries), and thinning the blood. Researchers attribute garlic’s heart-health properties to hydrogen sulfide, a compound formed when garlic is cut or crushed. When eaten raw, this compound causes blood vessels to relax, allowing more blood to pass through. 

3. Decrease cancer risk
Garlic and other members of the allium genus (such as leeks, shallots, and onions) contain organosulfur compounds that have been shown to reduce the risk of many cancers, including gastric, endometrial, and colorectal. Further, these compounds may fend off free-radicals, inhibit mutagenesis, and slow tumour growth.

4. Prevent the common cold
In a recent randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled study  participants who supplemented with aged garlic extract and then contracted a cold or flu reported less severe symptoms, fewer days sick, and fewer missed work or school days due to sickness compared to those who did not supplement. The study suggests that aged garlic extract may boost immunity during cold and flu season.

To include more garlic in your diet, consider supplementation, or try out one of these delicious recipes.

  • Garlic Toast with Fresh Herbs
  • Garlicky Roasted Asparagus and Fingerlings
  • Tempeh with 40 Cloves of Garlic
  • Garlic-Ginger Vegetable Stir-Fry
  • Roasted Garlic Beer Bread

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