Sunday, January 3, 2010


Garlic is an indigenous plant in the central Asia and is originated in China, having grass-like leaves and flimsy covering surrounding its flowers which also called as Allium sativum. Widely grown as herbal plants which belongs to the onion family and is noted in the application of both culinary and medicine. When pressed, it released strong and pungent scents which could let make a person tears out. It bears the standing influential medicinal traits. The consumable portion of the garlic which is the heads grows underground. The heads consists of divided sections known as cloves, each wrapped on its own covering.

The application of garlic for food culinary and medicine had been conducted thousands of years ago, dating back from the construction of Giza pyramids.

In the institution of Korea as a nation, it has been told that gods had provided mortal women bear and tiger personality an immortal black garlic mating which in belief renders women a supernatural powers an immortality.

The most common classes of garlic grown for commercial production in the Philippines is the Ilocos White. It has purple to white scales which is fairly resistant to insect pests and diseases. It reaches its maturity on the 90 to 110 day after its propagation which offers a possible harvest of 3.5 tons every hectare. This type of garlic has the extended shelf life.

Another type is the Tan Bolters which not totally suggested for commercial production because its production performance is not confirmed. It presents lager clove compared to Ilocos White and also has a superior keeping quality that reaches its maturity on the 105 to 120 days after propagation.

Some assortments like Batanes White, Batangas White, Ilocos Pink, and Nueva Ecija Pink are accessible in the Philippine market but is likewise not formally suggested for commercial production.

It is hard to make up a tasty dish with comprising garlic as one of its element. Every garlic clove does offers surprises to various foods, stirring and enliven its tang. Garlic is abundantly applied in some western cuisine and beside its culinary application it as well promptly utilized as medicinal herb.

In the ancient times, Egyptians initiated the medicinal traits of the plants. They used it to cure wounds, infections, tumors, and instestinal parasites and dubbed it as great protector of human body. Methodical studies in modern age confirms these ancient application and uses of garlic, involving its aptitude to lesser the cholesterol level and blood pressure. The sulphur content of garlic offers the herb its spicy aroma taste and is accountable for various healing traits.

The question usually posed is what would be the ideal type of garlic to use. Raw or lightly cooked garlic contains a potent array of sulphur compounds which give garlic its healing properties; however these also lend garlic its pungent taste. But whichever form you choose, just go for it and see how this miracle nutrient seasons not only your food but also your life.

Among the nutrients contained in garlic are the following;
• Manganese
• Vitamin B6
• Vitamin C
• Protein
• Thiamin
• Phosphorus
• Selenium
• Calcium
• Potassium
• Iron
• Copper
• Amino acid

Garlic’s health advantages and curative traits have been known since the ancient times and has been considered as “wonder drug” having the reputation in folklore application ranging from common cold or flu to high blood pressure. Some folklore applications of garlic include treatment for acne and as a mosquito repellant.

This wonder drug aids digestion, alleviates earache, works as an expectorant and as an antiseptic. It also raises the discharge of urine thus eliminating worms inside the body. Its aptitude to eject mucous by liquefying it, can help control cold, cough and some respiratory tract infections. This astounding herb has also portrayed the ability to shelter opposing the large array of environmental toxins. Sulphur compounds in garlic are a powerful antioxidant that guard cell membrane and DNA from impairment.

These compounds lower cholesterol by stimulating the release of bile by the gall bladder and by decreasing the production of cholesterol in the liver. In addition, garlic compounds gently lower blood pressure by slowing the production of hormones related to blood pressure.

Garlic is also credited with anti-oxidants that supports in combating cancer and cancerous tumors. Medical science has provided evidences that garlic contains compounds like diallye disulphide and s-allycystein, which have anti-tumor properties that help in slowing down the development of tumors and also decreases their size.

Any kind of heart ailments are prevented by the compound seen in garlic. It helps in lowering the cholesterol level in blood, which in turn makes sure there is nothing to block the arteries. It helps keep the aorta of the heart flexible and enables it to pump the blood effectively.

A chemical which is referred to as Ajoene which is found in garlic helps in thinning the blood that reduce clot formation thus preventing hypertention or high blood pressure. Garlic was used in ancient China to treat people suffering from angina attacks and poor circulation.

Garlic also contain compounds that restrain lipoxygenase and cyclooxygenase an enzyme that generate inflammatory prostaglandins and thromboxanes. Together with its vitamin C content, these anti-inflammatory compounds make it very valuable in protect against harsh invasion of asthma and may as well reduce the pain and inflammation of osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis.

Allicin which is among the sulfur compound in garlic is responsible for its odor and is a potent antibacterial and antiviral agent that unites forces with vitamin C in eliminating injurious microbes. This compound is proven by some research studies to be effective not only on some common infections like colds, flu, stomach viruses, and candida yeast, but is powerful as well in pathogenic microbes including tuberculosis and botulism. Allicin also prevent weight gain.

Asbestos is a popular carcinogen which is thought to cause cell mutations by producing oxygen species or free radicals that depletes the most essential antioxidants in the body which is glutathione. These antioxidants act as anti-carcinogen. In a laboratory study published in Toxicology Letters, garlic extract, when managed together with asbestos it shows to significantly lessened DNA mutations in human blood lymphocytes, these provided researchers the conclusion that garlic extract might be an efficient and physiologically bearable quencher of asbestos-induced genotoxicity.

Garlic also generates an enzyme known as nitric oxide synthase, an enzyme needed to acquire erection. Thus making garlic an effective aphrodisiacs which may be use in treating impotence. Garlic activates the synthesis of this enzyme in people who have lesser levels of it.

Letting garlic be a part of the daily nutrition of a person greatly reduces the hazard of various common cancers. A study from Southern European populations portrayed proofs for this ability.

Study participants taking the most garlic had a 39% decreased hazard for cancer of the oral cavity and pharynx, 57% decreased hazard for esophageal cancer, 26% decreased hazard for colorectal cancer, 44% decreased hazard for laryngeal cancer, 10% decrease hazard for breast cancer, 22% decreased hazard for ovarian cancer, 19% decreased hazard for prostate cancer, and 31% decreased hazard for renal cell cancer, compared to those eating the least garlic.
Source: American Journal of Clinical Nutrition

A study conducted by the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, regarding the effects of garlic to cardiovascular risks and disease, protective effects against cancer, and clinical adverse effects.

Limited information, principally from case-control studies, recommend, but never confirm, dietary garlic ingestion is related with the reduced probability of laryngeal, gastric, colorectal, and endometrial cancer and adenomatous colorectal polyps. Single case-control studies recommend, but never confirm, dietary garlic digestion is not related with breast or prostate cancer. No epidemiological study has reviewed whether using particular types of garlic supplement is correlated in the decrease in cancer occurrence. Preliminary 3-year evidence from a large group study implies digestion of "any" garlic supplement does not lessen hazard of breast, lung, colon, or gastric cancer. This study has not reported connections applicable to digestion of fresh or raw garlic, and its data about increments are inadequate because data is not accessible about different types and brands of garlic supplementations.

Unpleasant effects of oral digestions of garlic are "smelly" breath and body odor. Some potential, but not confirm, unpleasant effects include flatulence, esophageal and abdominal pain, small intestinal obstruction, contact dermatitis, rhinitis, asthma, bleeding, and myocardial infarction. There are two reports of patients taking warfarin who encountered rises in International Normalized Ratio (INR) when taking garlic pearls or tablets. The content and method of preparation of the pearls and tablets were not provided. The occurrence of unpleasant results on the oral consumption of garlic and whether they differ by specific preparations were not confirmed. Unpleasant results of inhaled garlic dust include allergic responses like asthma, rhinitis, urticaria, angioedema, and anaphylaxis. Unpleasant results of topical contact to raw garlic include dermatitis, skin blisters, and ulcero-necrotic lesions. Occurrence of responses to inhaled garlic dust or topical contacts of garlic were not confirmed.

There are inadequate information to sketch conclusions about effects of garlic on clinical cardiovascular outcomes like claudication and myocardial infarction. Garlic preparations may have small, positive, short-term motivations on lipids; whether effects are sustainable beyond 3 months is uncertain. Constant decreases in blood pressure with garlic were not seen, and no effects on glucose or insulin sensitivity were found. Some considerable effects on antithrombotic activity were accounted, but minor information is accessible for authoritative conclusion.

Application of any garlic increment for about 3 to 5 years were not related with declined hazards of breast, lung, gastric, colon, or rectal cancer. Some case-control researches recommend that superior nutritional garlic ingestion may be correlated with reduced hazards of laryngeal, gastric, colorectal, and endometrial cancers, and adenomatous colorectal polyps.

Source: Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality

Various extracts and elements acquired from garlic are capable to restrain Cu2+ - induced low density lipoprotein oxidation. Aqueous extract of raw garlic and garlic powder as well as the aqueous extract of boiled garlic cloves were studied. A study conducted by José Pedraza-Chaverrí, Mariana Gil-Ortiz, Gabriela Albarrán, Laura Barbachano-Esparza, Marta Menjívar, and Omar N Medina-Campos.

Cu2+-induced lipoprotein oxidation in human serum was followed by the formation of conjugated dienes at 234 nm and 37 deg C by 240 min in a phosphate buffer 20 mM, pH 6.4. Blood serum and CuSO4 were added to a final concentration of 0.67% and 0.0125 mM, respectively. The lag time and the area under the curve from the oxidation curves were obtained. The Cu2+ -chelating properties of garlic extracts were assessed using an approach based upon restoring the activity of xanthine oxidase inhibited in the presence of 0.050 mM Cu2+. The activity of xanthine oxidase was assessed monitoring the production of superoxide anion at 560 nm and the formation of uric acid at 295 nm. Data were compared by parametric or non-parametric analysis of variance followed by a post hoc test.
Source: PubMed

A study conducted at Discipline of General Practice and Discipline of Public Health, University of Adelaide, Adelaide, South Australia regarding the effects of garlic on blood pressure: A systematic review and meta-analysis.

Methods: Searching the Medline and Embase databases for studies published between 1955 and October 2007. Randomised controlled trials with true placebo groups, using garlic-only preparations, and reporting mean systolic and/or diastolic blood pressure (SBP/DBP) and standard deviations were included in the meta-analysis. We also conducted subgroup meta-analysis by baseline blood pressure (hypertensive/normotensive), for the first time. Meta-regression analysis was performed to test the associations between blood pressure outcomes and duration of treatment, dosage, and blood pressure at start of treatment.

Results: Eleven of 25 studies included in the systematic review were suitable for meta-analysis. Meta-analysis of all studies showed a mean decrease of 4.6 ± 2.8 mm Hg for SBP in the garlic group compared to placebo (n = 10; p = 0.001), while the mean decrease in the hypertensive subgroup was 8.4 ± 2.8 mm Hg for SBP (n = 4; p < n =" 3;" r =" 0.057;" p =" 0.03;" r =" -0.315;" p =" 0.02).">.
Source: PubMed


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