I love garlic! I believe it is an herb that no herbalist – professional or layperson – should be without. Unfortunately most people’s initial reaction to this fabulous plant is a result of its extremely pungent odour. Most dismiss its use without a second thought because of its infamous smell. It certainly doesn’t help matters that society as a whole has determined ‘garlic breath’ to be a bad thing. Perhaps if more people knew how superb and powerful this herb is, its use as medicine would become more common. My goal in this blog is to educate and spread the word – GARLIC IS AMAZING!
The Antimicrobial Powerhouse
Whenever I feel a sniffle coming on or everyone around me seems as sick as a dog, the first thing I reach for is my garlic tablets (I take it in pill form because straight garlic tincture is extremely pungent). Why do I do this? Because garlic (Allium sativum) is:
That means garlic can help your body fight bacteria, fungi, protozoa, viruses and worms!
Concerning Your Heart
If the remarkable list of antimicrobial properties hasn’t impressed you, perhaps Allium’s use in cardiovascular health will. Its cardiac properties help to strengthen and improve the functioning of the heart by improving blood flow. Being hypocholesterolemic and hypolipidemic, garlic will help to reduce both cholesterol and overall blood fat levels in the body. Many people who suffer from cardiovascular difficulties have damaged, irritated and inflamed blood vessels. Garlic’s vascular tonic properties can help to heal and return to tone to these blood vessels. In addition to everything mentioned previously, garlic is also helps to normalize blood pressure, improve general circulation throughout the body and help combat the effects of cardiac specific toxins. Will all of its amazing cardiovascular properties, Allium sativum help can be enlisted for a variety of conditions. The following list is an example of some of the conditions that garlic has been used to treat.
- High blood pressure
- High cholesterol and blood fats
- Heart conditions (heart palpitations, heart weakness or failure, arrhythmia, angina)
- Prevent heart attacks and strokes
- Poor circulation (cold hands and feet)
If you suffer from heart disease, heart failure, other serious cardiovascular conditions or are on any heart medications, please enlist the help of a qualified herbalist before using any herbs to treat your condition. Self treating using cardiac herbs could result in adverse side effects and/or other complications.
Breathe Easy – Garlic for Respiratory Conditions
Allium`s respiratory properties work well in combination with its broad spectrum antimicrobial actions. Not only is garlic an immune stimulant, it also helps to loosen and expel mucus in both the upper and lower respiratory tracts (decongestant and expectorant). This herb is also very helpful for conditions characterized by bronchial spasms and spasmodic coughing (asthma, whooping cough, bronchitis etc.)
Even the healthiest of people have the occasional bout of digestive upset. Although I never take garlic for digestive reasons alone, when I am taking it I definitely notice improvements in this area. Its local and systemic anti-inflammatory properties help to reduce all sorts of inflammation in the body – including irritated and inflamed mucus membranes. Garlic is also a digestive antispasmodic, making it great for digestive conditions associated with cramping (diarrhea, gas, IBS etc.) Thanks to its carminative properties, Allium helps to increase the digestive secretions of the mouth, stomach, small intestines and pancreas.
Allium sativum has some amazing benefits with regards to cancer.
- Anticardiotoxic: helps to prevent the development of cancer cells
- Antimitotic: prevents or interferes with mitosis
- Antimutagenic: prevent the mutation of cells
- Antineoplastic: discourages the growth and/or directly kills cancer cells
- At times they can also increase the immune system`s ability to fight cancer cells
Does this mean that garlic is a cure for cancer? Unfortunately nothing in life is that simple. I do believe, however, that garlic can be beneficial in both the treatment and prevention of cancer.
For serious conditions such as cancer please seek the aid of a qualified herbal practitioner.
Stinky is Good
I know you can buy many garlic products that say they are odourless. Although this aspect of the products may seem appealing to our mind, we need to stop and think about this. In order to remove garlic`s smell, certain constituents must either be removed or rendered chemically inert. Once this process occurs, those particular constituents are no longer of value to us. This doesn`t mean that odourless garlic isn`t effective, but it could mean it may not be as effective as the stinky kind. In my own personal experience I have had the greatest success when I used raw garlic cloves or pure garlic tablets.
Long Story Short
I will end this blog just as I started it – screaming from the hilltops about how fabulous garlic is! In the words of Earl Mindell “garlic may be the wonder drug of the herbal world.” With all of its amazing and healthful properties, it should be ignored no longer! Add it to your food, make a tincture from it, prepare homemade herbal remedies using garlic (such as cough syrups) or take garlic tablets. The options are endless!
In good (and stinky) health,
P.S. Pin for future reference and to share in the garlic love 😉