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The Health Benefits of Garlic
Posted on February 8, 2013
Garlic, one of the most used spice in cooking, is grown all around the globe, China being the largest producer of garlic (10,5 million tones grown annually).
Since forever garlic was used, both as food and medicine. The most used part of the garlic is the bulb which has a spicy, pungent flavor that sweetens and mellows with cooking. Other parts are also edible. The leaves and flowers are eaten being milder in flavor than the bulbs and are consumed while immature and still tender. Usually this happens when the garlic is consumed as “green garlic“ in the most dishes of various regions like eastern Asia , South Asia, Middle East, Northern Africa, Southern Europe, South Central America.
The flavor varies with different methods of cooking. Usually it is paired with onions, ginger or tomato. In Korea, the resulted product of garlic fermented at high temperature is called “black garlic” which is sweet and syrupy. Garlic can be eaten in a variety of classic dishes such as garlic bread, garlic toast, bruschetta, crostini and canapé.
Garlic cloves are also used to flavor oils and these are called infused oils which are used to season all categories of meats, pasta, breads and vegetables.
Since ancient times, the garlic was used as a medicine for many conditions including parasites, respiratory problems, poor digestion and low energy, or it was recommended as a palliative for the heat of the sun in field labor.
Recent studies shown that garlic has antibacterial, antiviral and antifungal activity properties. Garlic is also claimed to help prevent heart disease (atherosclerosis, high cholesterol and high blood pressure) and cancer (colon cancer, stomach cancer).
The sulfur compound called allicin is the chemical produced when garlic is chopped, chewed or bruised. It is like an antibiotic, like a potent agent that helps the body to stop the germs growing and reproducing. Allicin can also prevent weight gain.
Garlic is also known for improving the immune system function and strengthening the body’s defenses against allergies and it’s a great choice for killing and expelling parasites from the human body. It is packed with vitamins and nutrients like protein, potassium, vitamins A,B,B2,C, Calcium, Zinc and many others. It is also high in antioxidants and can increase the absorption of iron and zinc, this being really important for vegetarians who may not get as much iron and zinc as a meat-eater.
Garlic is available in pills, capsules, liquid and raw cloves and is one of the most popular healthy herbs all over the world being used as an antibiotic. It is good for treating asthma, hoarseness, coughs, difficulties of breathing,too.
We all know what a powerful flavor, smell and taste has the garlic. Because of that, here are some tips on how to get rid of garlic breath. An immediate remedy is parsley. Eating some parsley after consuming garlic is a really efficient way of getting rid of the garlic breath due to the high level of chlorophyll found in it. Another fresh and healthy way is lemon. You can eat it or you can drink it. The same thing will happen even if you transform it into lemonade : the garlic breath disappears. A nice cup of hot tea will also make wonders.
Well , well! Who knew? So many benefits in a small clove.
Recipes with garlic:
Did you know that...
1. Elephant garlic or Russian garlic isn’t considered a true garlic?
2. Garlic can treat ear infections by wrapping a piece of garlic clove in some tissue and inserting it into the ear ?
3. Garlic can be used for bug bites or rashes?
4. Garlic can heal skin infections? Garlic cloves are crushed and applied on the skin area that is infected
5. Garlic can be used in making warts disappear? crushing garlic cloves you obtain a paste that applied to warts makes them disappear
6. In order to receive all the good stuff, your body needs three garlic cloves a week?