The health benefits and medicinal properties of garlic been known for at least 3,000 years. It has the reputation of being very effective in ridding the body of everything from the common cold to the flu. It has always been used extensively in herbal medicine, but only recently has garlic benefits been acknowledged by modern science.
One of the most common ailments garlic is used as home treatment has been touted to treat is the cold. Upon the beginning of the sniffles, many people testify that consuming a clove or more of raw garlic takes them away. Researchers have shown that garlic extract improves immune function, giving our natural defense system a enhancement, and helping it conserve our levels of anti-oxidants in our system. It is this intensification of the immune system that aids in its support for other health related conditions.
Health benefits of garlic are substantiated by a wealth of modern day research that confirms its anti-viral, anti-bacterial and anti-fungal properties. It is also a powerful antioxidant and immune booster with anti-inflammatroy properties. Scientific studies reveal benefits for diabetes, cancer and heart disease. It’s heart health traits include lowering bad cholesterol and blood pressure, aiding circulation and preventing against stroke.
Garlic is high in sulfur, which accounts for some of it’s medicinal potency. The stronger the taste of the garlic, the higher the sulfur content and the better it is for you. Two other medicinally potent compounds in garlic are Diallyl Sulphides, which increase blood circulation, and Allicin, an anti-biotic, and anti-fungal compound.
Garlic has been known as a boost for the immune system as it has been a common key in prevention of the common cold and flu viruses present in the air throughout the winter and fall seasons. Many take garlic in preparations for these season changes and the germs in the air. Experts look to garlic as a broad spectrum antibiotic that can prevent bacteria from becoming a cold or flu.
Garlic is an ushan virya herb i.e. the herb with hot potency. It contains five rasa (except amal) that are supposed to play major pharmalogical role that this herb possess. Due to ushan virya property, it is highly recommended in the illness caused by vata disorders. Also due to presence of katu rasa it is also highly recommended in kapha disorders thereby plays an important role in diseases caused by vata and kapha disorders.
Garlic helps eliminate the hazardous effects of heavy metals like mercury and lead if consumed by chance in food or inhaled as part of air pollution. It also prevents the cancer of the digestive tract besides ulcers and retards the formation of tumors in the body. Garlic also provides relief from colon/bowel irritability.
Garlic is used in the treatment of acne. If the pimples are rubbed with a cut clove of garlic several times a day, then they will disappear without leaving a scar behind. Garlic must also be included in the diet since it is a blood-purifier and can treat acne from within.