Did you know that garlic is actually a part of the lily family and that it is related to leeks, onions, chives and shallots?
Garlic is one of the most popular natural remedies of all times; as far back as 1550 B.C. you can find evidence of its medicinal use for many ailments.
It wasn’t until the mid 1800’s, however, that scientists started to look more closely at the wonders of garlic. In 1858 Louis Pasteur proved that it could kill bacteria (1) and by 1983 it was shown in laboratory tests that garlic oil inhibited the development of skin cancers (2).
Today you don’t have to look very far to find an ever-growing body of evidence for the many health benefits garlic has to offer; everything from skin and ear infections to cardiovascular disease can be helped with the addition of garlic in your routine.
Garlic contains numerous phytochemicalsand various compounds that stimulate the immune system; it is a powerful anti-oxidant with anti-fungal, anti-viral and anti-inflammatory properties. Garlic also has compounds that are important for detoxification of heavy metals and other toxins; protecting us from free-radical damage.
In order for you to benefit from garlics full medicinal benefits it should be fresh and crushed prior to use (crushing garlic is what releases the many compounds, including the ones that give it its aroma and flavour)
Aged garlic, cooking with garlic and processing it (eg. supplements) will all diminish the active ingredients a bit so try incorporating fresh, crushed garlic into your every day routine to help you benefit from the full benefits it has to offer.
If you are new to using garlic in your routine begin slowly with 1 clove (one section of the garlic head) and add more as you become more accustomed to it.
I use garlic, in some way or another, on a daily basis. I love the aroma and the flavour that it adds to many dishes and I especially like the many benefits that it has to offer! If you aren't yet a lover of the garlic, try adding it to your next pasta dish or sautéed with your next stir-fry... I'll bet you fall in love with it!