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Garlic » Homemade Remedies for Your Health


Athlete’s foot
Cancer protection
Colds and flu
Gastrointestinal ailments

High blood pressure
High cholesterol
Improved immunity
Respiratory infections Ringworm

Swimmer’s ear Ulcers
Urinary tract infections
Yeast infections


More health benefits have been ascribed to garlic (Allium sativum) than to just about any other food—and with good reason. The short list of reasons why it’s smart to be a frequent garlic eater include its antibiotic action, its ability to foil respiratory ailments in the making, and its potential for boosting the health of your heart and protecting you against certain cancers.


rooted in history
Could garlic be the secret that helped raise the great pyramids? It’s possible: The Egyptians rationed it to pyramid builders to boost their strength (and to help pre vent dysentery). Meanwhile, across the Red Sea, a garlic prescription written in cuneiform was discovered on a Sumerian clay tablet dating back to 3000 BC. Chinese and Indian healers wrote of using garlic as a blood thinner back in 1500 BC. Hippocrates reportedly used garlic to treat cervical cancer. In the early 1700s, French grave- diggers drank a brew of crushed garlic and wine in hopes of warding off the plague.

Garlic’s first investigator was none other than Louis Pasteur, the great French scientist. He discovered its anti bacterial and antifungal powers in the mid-1800s. Later, at his hospital in Africa, Albert Schweitzer used garlic to treat dysentery.

Finally, garlic played a helpful patriotic role during World Wars I and II, when soldiers were given the stuff to prevent gangrene.


what’s in it?
A garlic bulb is a virtual chemical factory full of substances that are highly volatile. Because they’re so unstable, their health benefits depend on how fresh the garlic is, and whether it’s been crushed, chopped, chewed, or cooked. Among these are sulfur compounds including thiosulfinates, which are responsible for garlic’s distinctive aroma and for many of its effects. Garlic’s heart-protective ability has recently been attributed to a chemical called S-allylcysteine.

Another active component is a substance called alliin. When a clove is crushed, bruised, or chewed, the alliin is converted into allicin, which cannot survive the heat of cooking or the acid in your stomach. But when you chew fresh garlic, the allicin (and its benefits) is quickly absorbed in your mouth.

Garlic has antibacterial, antimicrobial, and antifungal activity, which in addition to its other benefits, makes it a great home remedy for healing wounds and athlete’s foot and for expelling worms.


what science says
Garlic studies published in 2008 and 2009 confirm that garlic lowers cholesterol and blood pressure and helps pre vent the common cold, and that a diet rich in the pungent stuff can reduce the risk for prostate and other cancers.

Also recently, researchers from the University of Connecticut ended confusion about the best way to use garlic. They discovered that freshly crushed garlic, rather than garlic that’s been processed or cooked, is best for helping protect against heart attacks.


the heart-protecting bulb
When eaten daily, garlic can help lower heart disease risk by as much as 76 percent. It performs this miraculous feat by moderately reducing cholesterol levels (by between 5 and 10 percent in some studies), by thinning the blood and thereby staving off dangerous clots, and by acting as an antioxidant. Garlic’s sulfur compounds also appear to ward off cancer, especially stomach and colorectal cancer. The compounds flush out carcinogens before they can damage cell DNA, and they force cancer cells that do develop to self-destruct.




Garlic bulbs should be plump, with smooth, firm cloves. Store in an open container in a cool, well-ventilated pantry for up to two months; don’t refrigerate. Cloves that have sprouted are fine to use, though they’re less pungent. Mince the sprout and cook along with the garlic.


Good to Know


Eating five or more cloves a day can result H heartburn, flatulence, and intestinal distress. Because garlic is a blood thinner people taking aspirin or anticoagulant drugs, as well as people with clot ting disorders, should check with their doctors before taking medicinal amounts of garlic. In rare cases, garlic may cause an allergic reaction.

Since drying alters the active ingredients of fresh garlic, don’t substitute dried powdered garlic when using garlic medicinally.


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