People have used garlic for thousand of years to prevent many diseases, among them heart attacks, high blood pressure, and a lot more and to ward off vampires. Well, though modern research hasn’t confirmed yet that rubbing garlic on doorknobs and window frames may protect us from vampires or bad spirits, it’s confirmed what our ancestors thought about the health benefits of this herb: its consumption can protect us from several ailments.
Unfortunately, for many decades, the widespread use of antibiotics has disregarded the medical properties of garlic. Lately, however, interest in garlic has escalated and today research is focusing on the function garlic plays in the prevention and control of cardiovascular disease. How do garlic help control and prevent cardiovascular disease? Through the following mechanisms
Garlic can lower your High Blood Pressure
High blood pressure is one of those health conditions where garlic therapy brings the quickest results. Studies indicate that garlic dilates blood vessel walls, increasing the width of the arteries. Garlic also helps prevent high blood pressure by preventing blood cells from sticking together.
In a clinical trial, the subjects ingested standardized garlic powder capsules for four decades. The results demonstrated that a 9 to 18 percent reduction in plaque volume and a 7 percent decline in blood pressure. This resulted in an increase in the width of the arteries by 4%, which is associated with an 18 percent increase of circulation. These effects of garlic led to a risk reduction for heart attacks and strokes by more than 50 percent.
Garlic may lower your Blood Cholesterol
Studies indicate that the people that eat garlic consistently have the lowest level of blood sugar. It was showed that men with high total blood cholesterol could reduce its concentration by 7 percent and LDL, the bad cholesterol, by 10 percent when taking garlic supplements. The research indicated that the sulfur compounds in garlic have been accountable for the results, particularly S-allylcysteine, which prevents the formation of cholesterol from the liver.
Garlic can lower your Blood Platelets
Platelets are cells in the blood which, when arteries become damaged, rush into the lesion site in order to repair them. They get sticky and form a clot. Unfortunately, although platelets’ intentions are good, these clots are the first step toward the formation of a thrombus, an accumulation of platelets and protein. A thrombus may in time block the circulation of blood in the blood vessels. Studies have shown that small doses of garlic may prevent platelets from becoming sticky and piling up together. In a study performed by Liverpool John Moores University, the subjects experienced a decrease in platelet stickiness after eating 5 milliliters of garlic extract every day for 13 weeks.
Garlic can Lower your Plaque from the Arteries
Plaque begins to form when blood are damaged. It’s composed of mounds of debris and fat deposited in the wall of the arteries which decrease the space available for blood to circulate. Plaque keeps growing and with time can block the flow of blood from the blood vessels.
One study demonstrated that continuous intake of high doses of garlic powder capsules for four years reduced the plaque volume by 5 to 18 percent. Additionally it is true that the majority of people between 50 and 80 years old have a gain in the amount of plaque. During the four years this research lasted, the quantity of plaque remained steady in people in this age frame demonstrating that garlic has a preventative and a curative role in cardiovascular disease.
Garlic is an Antioxidant
Garlic has been proven to protect blood vessels from the damaging effects of free radicals. A study to investigate the effects of garlic extract on the oxidation of red blood cells was made. For six months, 11 patients with atherosclerosis ingested a daily dose of 1 milliliter of garlic extract per kilogram of body weight. The analysis showed a decrease on the degree of oxidation of red blood cells from the patients.
Medicinal Properties of Garlic
To find the medicinal properties of garlic, however, you need to follow several steps, a “protocol” as I call it before swallowing it. Here’s What you need to do
- Peel the cloves
- Cut them in tiny bits
- Crush them in a mortar.
- After you’ve crushed the garlic, let it sit uncovered in the mortar for 10 or 15 minutes before you place it in the food. This permits the creation of allicin, a compound required to unleash the medicinal properties of garlic.
Remember that people around the world, particularly those who like few chronic diseases, use garlic broadly in their daily diets. A truly miracle of nature with over 200 chemical compounds, garlic has been a critical contributor to the curative effects of the Mediterranean diet. So, how about going back to the fundamentals and put some garlic into your own life as a preventive measure for heart disease?