Saturday, December 14, 2013

Top 10 Reasons to Eat Garlic

Garlic against Aging

Garlic is one of those foods that you either love or hate. Sometimes referred to as the “Nectar of the Gods”, not only is it a tasty addition to any recipe, it also has some pretty surprising health benefits that you may be eager to learn about. We decided it was time to find out more…

There are five major HEALTH reasons why you should be adding more garlic to your diet, and it doesn’t just include keeping away those pesky vampires, if you believe the good old myths and legends!

We’ll start with number one; the definite winner – garlic helps to lower cholesterol. Statins, something usually advised to those with high cholesterol, acts as an inhibitor to certain enzymes to make the condition less prolific. Guess what! Garlic does the same thing. Adding to the good news is the fact that garlic is an antioxidant, which not only helps to keep your general health up to scratch, but also prevents oxidation of that dreaded cholesterol.

Moving swiftly along to number two, we come to the fact that garlic helps to fight the never-ending battle against cancer; colorectal and stomach cancers to be more precise. According to recent statistics published by, “164,000 Americans are affected by stomach and colorectal cancers each year” and these two types of cancers are among the biggest killers. It has been said that garlic can actually reduce the size of pre-cancerous growths, and also prevent them from multiplying. The reason behind this is not yet known, but scientists believe that it is because garlic actually helps to build up the immune system, making it much more efficient at fighting off various medical conditions, cancer being just one of them.

Fact number three in the case for garlic – it can help to lower high blood pressure. There are muscles in the arteries which can contract when someone suffers from high blood pressure. Garlic actually helps these muscles, not only to relax, but also to dilate, making the blood flow much more smoothly, and in turn lowering blood pressure.

Number four – garlic helps to prevent against blood clots. Working in the same way as anti-coagulants, garlic can be a blood thinner which makes the chances of getting a blood clot much less. When you bear this in mind, it makes sense to speak to a medical professional before eating a lot more garlic, or taking supplements that contain it when you are blood thinning medication.

The last great fact about garlic that you should know is the fact that it can help to fight off common ailments such as the common cold. As we have already mentioned, garlic works by boosting the immune system, so when you increase the garlic intake in your diet, you are effectively building up your immune system, thus preventing being beat down by things like flu and the common cold.

As a general rule, garlic has many potential health benefits, and when you consider that the chances of the above problems becoming apparent increases as you get older, it works as a great way to beat off the common signs of aging. Thankfully, there are plenty of ways that you can add a little taste and health benefit into your diet, either by taking supplements, increasing the usage of garlic in your recipes, and even eating it raw, which is said to have the most health benefits. You may want to consider chewing more minty gum!

Of course, we all know why you really read this article – you want to know how eating garlic can help against the ACTUAL signs of aging. Here we shall let you in on the five massive ANTI-AGING reasons why you should eat more garlic.

-- Cellular decay is slowed down with added garlic intake, which means that your skin cells will have much more “oomph” packed within them, making wrinkles less obvious.

-- Working as an anti-inflammatory, the puffiness around the eyes, mixed with the dark circles are reduce with added garlic in your diet, and this can make the world of difference to how much of your age your face actually gives away!

-- The anti-oxidant powers that we have already mentioned above also work in the visible signs of the aging process – when the cells are much healthier, they tend to look plumper and smoother, so this can help with aging of the face, hands, and everywhere else on the skin. It has also been said to help with cellulite too, making it an even bigger winner than we first may have thought!

-- Skin damage is a massive factor behind the visible signs of aging, and garlic can help with this by giving the cells a boost to rejuvenate. This means that if you like the worship the sun in your younger years, eating more garlic will definitely stop you looking like an old leather couch as you get older!

-- Last, but certainly not least, garlic can help the blood to run more easily around your body, letting your skin have all the vital nutrients it needs to look healthy and younger for longer. Maybe it’s time to stop wasting so much money on expensive creams, and chuck a bit more garlic into your food instead!

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Consumption Tips

1. Chop up a raw garlic clove onto a salad every day. The beneficial anti-aging properties of garlic are at their strongest when the garlic is raw.
2. Swallow one to two whole garlic cloves each day, just as you would vitamins. This is a good way to get raw garlic for people who don't like the taste of it.
3. Roast an entire head of garlic in the oven until the cloves are soft. Squeeze the cloves out of their thin, papery husks onto a plate, then use a butter knife to spread the cloves on bread as a substitute for butter. Do this once a week.
4. Wait ten minutes after chopping up garlic for soups or sauces before putting it into the cooking pot. Leaving garlic out for ten minutes before cooking it allows it to retain more of its anti-aging compounds during the cooking process.
5. Take a garlic supplement every day. Garlic supplements have the beneficial properties of garlic concentrated in pill form, without any lingering smell associated with them.

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Tips & Warnings

* Fresh garlic is best when it is smooth, white and firm with a slightly pungent odor. Do not use garlic if it has any mold or soft, dark spots on it or if it starts to smell sweet.
* If you are going to be storing garlic for only a week or two, you can hang it up in a basket in your kitchen for easy access. If you plan on keeping your garlic around longer than that, store it in a plastic bag in the refrigerator to help it stay fresh.
* You shouldn't take garlic a month before or after surgery. Because it's a blood thinner, it may increase bleeding through your incision or make it harder for you to heal from the surgery.
* When using garlic keep in mind that allicin starts to degrade immediately after it is produced, so use it immediately. Try to avoid using microwave as it completely destroys allicin and eliminates some of the health benefits of garlic.

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No Bad Breath

* Eat parsley: An effective way to counter the bad smell of garlic on your breath is to eat a handful of fresh parsley after consuming the garlic.
* Eat pickled garlic: When garlic gets pickled, it loses the strong flavor without losing any medical properties. You can buy garlic pickled, or eat the pickled garlic cloves out of garlic-stuffed olives.
* Eat garlic bread: The shredded garlic on the bread, accompanied with the olive oil, gives you a great garlic serving without the pungent smell due to it being neutralized by the olive oil.
* Sip milk with raw garlic: Milk neutralizes the smell and taste of garlic, as well as the body odor one may receive prior to eating.
* Eat yogurt: Several studies have proved that eating 6 ounces of yogurt can help reduce bad bacteria and hydrogen sulfide in the mouth, which are main causes of bad breath. And this goes for garlic breath as well!
* Chew coffee beans: Coffee beans contain compounds that have antibacterial effects, useful in fighting microorganisms responsible for halitosis. Chewing roasted coffee beans can therefore be very helpful when trying to get rid of garlic breath.
* Use mustard: Take a teaspoon of mustard and swish it around your mouth for a minute before spitting it out. Then take another half-teaspoon and swallow. This will go down to the stomach and kill the smell throughout your body.
* Eat vegetables to counter the smell. Mashed potatoes, mushrooms, lemons and carrots can all improve your breath. If you're eating a meal with lots of garlic or onion, it would be smart to follow-up with these vegetables in the same meal.
* Chew gum: Adding more saliva to your mouth is key in getting rid of bad breath. Chewing gum, especially those kinds with cinnamon, is great in covering up bad smells.
* Drink a shot of vodka: Alcohol kills bacteria in the mouth, which will remove bad breath. Vodka is particularly good because it does not have a lingering aftertaste.
* Apply oral hygiene - Brush, Floss, Scrape and Gargle.
* Take garlic supplements: These completely avoid any taste or smell, and still give you the health benefits of garlic.

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Sources and Additional Information:

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