Garlic as a medicine
Garlic has been used as a medicinal plant and spice for thousands of years. According to the book „Vigala Sassi taimeravi“ (Heintalu & Sihvart, 2012) garlic has even been an ectraordinary alternative to western medicine in the following cases: long-suppurative inflammations, hypertension, low libido and impotence, bloating, diarrhea and edema. Garlic promotes digestion and diuretic activities, helps to stiffen the tissues and blood vessels, ejects intestinal parasites, helps to treat toxemia, supports pregnancy, cleans blood, displaces the spring fatigue (A, B, PP, vitamin C), regulates the functioning of the gall bladder and helps to fight colics.
A gardening researcher and publicist Leopold Meensalu says that when it comes to garlic, besides carbohydrates, proteins, minerals, vitamins etc, the concentration of antibiotic fytoncides is also worth mentioning. Garlic`s main curative agent is an essential oil allicin which gives it the specific and strong flavor that many people consider unpleasant. It is recommended to consume garlic to fight high blood pressure and atherosclerosis, as well as in case of cough, cold, and bronchial diseases. Garlic inhibits rotting and fermentation processes in intnestine and facilitates the activities of the digestive organs. In folk medicine garlic is also known as a means of raising the general tone and enhancing cardiac activity (source). Egyptians treated garlic as a deity because they believed that it increases strength and endurance (source).
Garlic contains more than 200 chemical compounds and has a wide variety of useful medicinal properties.
Besides many other elements, there are the sodium, potassium, selenium, calcium, magnesium, silicon, sulfuric acid, phosphoric acid vitamin B, C and D in garlic. Garlic can also be beneficial in fighting fungal infections. Due to this garlic is much more valuable than many modern antibiotics (source).
Garlic includes 0.3% sulfur-containing odorless substance, alline, which is rapidly degraded due to enzymes after milling the tubers into allicin, which is an ethereal antibiotics and has a specific odor and very strong bactericidal effect being very effective in treating infections. Furthermore, garlic includes 0.4% of ethereal oil, consisting of sulfides, fytosterines, up to 10 mg of vitamins C and B, carbohydrates, starch, inulin, fructose, organic acids, and trace elements. The fytoncides from garlic are stronger than those from onion, maintaining its bactericidal properties and the activity for a long time, and destroying many of the germs (source).
According to Anne Kersna, teacher catering area manager in Kehtna Economy and Technology School, garlic also has gas excreting, digestion facilitating and tone increasing effects. It can be used in case of a seizure, arthritis and as an antiseptic. It also releaves pain in case of bronchitis, and helps to treat gout, high blood pressure and digestive disorders. The allicine that is in garlics has positive effects on heart and cardiovascular system. According to studies, the required amount that should be eaten is 7-28 cloves of garlic (source) which could be quite complicated to accomplish with fresh garlic. Eating that amount of black garlic, however, is pure pleasure.
Garlic as an antibiotics
The allicine that is contained in garlic helps to fight infections and bacteria. British researchers conducted an experiment and gave 146 people either a placebo (the apparent drug) or garlic extract during 12 weeks. Those who were given garlic, got sick with colds by two-thirds less. According to other studies those who eat more than 6 cloves of garlic every week, have 30% less of the small intestine cancer, and 50% less of gastric cancer. Garlic also helps to open clogged nasal passages.
Garlic reduces the amount of cholesterol
In their study in 2012, the researchers from Shandong Institute of Toxicology of the University analysed the results of 26 well-designed clinical trials to assess the impact of garlic to cholesterol level. If was found that in reducing cholesterol, garlic was more effective than the placebo. The authors pointed out that compared with the control group the garlic significantly reduced the levels of cholesterol and triglyceride (source). At the beginning of the 18th century, gravediggers drank wine with crushed garlic, believing that it will protect them against plague. During First and Second World War soldiers were given garlic to prevent gangrene (source).
Garlic as an aphrodisiac
The Japanese have found that garlic strengthens the immune system and stimulates the activity of the gonads (source). Garlic also has the ability to improve blood circulation and therefore, it is thought that it could also spark the flame of passion. After eating garlic Tibetan monks were forbidden to even enter monasteries (source). According to Kundalini yoga science garlic is a holy and powerful root. It strengthens the nervous system, stimulates men`s sperm production and increases potency (Yogi Bhajan, The Aquarian Teacher Textbook. Kundalini Research Institute 2003). Garlic also stimulates the production of semen. Yoga science says that any man who wants to keep their relationship or marriage, should eat two cloves of garlic per day (Liina Ravnneet Elvik, Kundalini jooga. Teekond imelisse võlumaailma. Pegasus 2013). In addition to all other good qualities, black garlic has 2 to 80 times more anti-oxidants than fresh garlic. For these reasons, the black garlic is added to energy drinks in Asia and in Thailand it is believed that it also contributes to longevity (source).
* The information in this site is a historical overview about the use, methods and beliefs about garlic. This is not a health statement and Must Küüslauk OÜ neither claims nor disproves that eating garlic provides the aforementioned effects. Eating garlic is not a substitute for a varied diet nor medications prescribed by your doctor.