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The Wonders of Garlic

What is garlic?

Garlic is a popular spice used for cooking. But did you know it is used for medicinal purposes and some uses that may surprise you. It grows in the shape of a bulb and is made up of cloves.  These cloves are used to season foods. Garlic is planted in the early spring and matures early in the fall. After the bulbs are cured by drying in the fields, workers braid the stems before sending them to the market. Garlic is sold in bulbs, cloves, or powdered for seasonings.

Where did garlic come from?

Today garlic is found in many parts of the world. Originally, the garlic plant was found in Middle Asia. It also grew as a wild plant in China, India, and Egypt, and the Ukraine. Currently, wild garlic grows in Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, and Uzbekistan. China is the world’s largest commercial garlic producer.  In the United States, 80% to 90% of the garlic is grown in California for commercial use.

Did you eat garlic today?

If not, there are many reasons why you should think about eating garlic as part of your daily routine.  Whole Foods recommends that a person eat 20 grams of garlic which is about 7 cloves of raw garlic a week or about 2 to 2 1/2cloves per day.  For best results, the garlic should be chewed, but it can also be chopped, minced, or even crushed. Why eat garlic? Garlic contains allicin, an organic sulfur compound.  It is an excellent source of manganese and Vitamin B6, a very good source of Vitamin C, copper, and a good source of selenium, phosphorus, calcium, and Vitamin B 1. All of these are needed to maintain good health.

What are the some of the health benefits of garlic?

There are numerous health benefits of garlic.

Here are a few.

Garlic reduces the risks of many types of cancers. It

  • reduces the risk of lung cancer by 44% by eating garlic twice a week.
  • reduces the risk of upper digestive system, stomach cancer, and colorectal cancer. Its antibiotic properties help flush out the toxins.
  • reduces the risk of cancer of the mouth, pharynx, larynx, and esophagus.

Garlic protects the heart. It

–           lowers cholesterol levels.

–           regulates blood pressure.

–           improves artery function.

Garlic protects the brain. It

  • was used in research by the Medical University of South Carolina. The

study found that eating fish with a few cloves of garlic may destroy brain cancer cells and protect the brain from malignant tumors.

Garlic helps purify the blood. It

  • helps regulate blood sugar.
  • helps lower the risk of Type 2 Diabetes.
  • improves skin and acne by taking two cloves of garlic with warm water in the morning followed by more water throughout the day.
  • cleanses the system to improve weight loss by taking two cloves with juice from half a lemon in a glass of warm water.

Garlic protects bones. It

  • reduces the risk of osteoarthritis.

Garlic strengthens the immune system. It

–      decreases the frequency of colds and sinusitis and cures a stuffy nose

when used as a garlic tea with honey or ginger.

–      reduces cases of intestinal illness and even food poisoning.

Garlic provides anti-inflammatory properties. It

  •    relieves sore muscles and inflamed joints when garlic oil is used for massage.

Garlic banishes antifungal itch. It

–      improves fungal infections from athlete’s foot to ringworm when used as

a raw garlic soak.

  • improves eczema when applied topically.

These are only a few of the health benefits of garlic. Here are some

Unusual uses of garlic

Hair Loss

A scalp massage with crushed garlic or garlic oil can prevent or reverse hair loss.

Splinter Removal

A stubborn splinter can be removed by putting a piece of garlic over the splinter and covering it with a bandage. It will draw the splinter out.

Mouthwash

To prevent cavity causing bacteria use a small quantity of garlic extract as a mouthwash.

There are many more wonders of garlic. These are only a few taken from the following article:

Eat Garlic for 7 Unexpected Health Benefits by Catherine Roberts

7 Surprising Health Benefits of Garlic from Smart Cooky an NDTV Food Venture August 11, 2017

Garlic The World’s Healthiest Foods from whfoods.org July 24-30, 2017

Please comment or send your uses for garlic to keep the dialogue moving forward.

Be on the lookout for the next article Paprika Power.

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