Benefits of Garlic – Do you like consuming garlic? You must be familiar with this one spice because plenty of delicious dishes use garlic.
It’s no secret that garlic has many benefits for the overall health of our body, one of which is by consuming it raw. Eating raw garlic has been dermatologically proven to boost the immune system which in turn helps to prevent colds, coughs, and inflammation.
Even helps to prevent serious illnesses, such as cholesterol, cancer, and so on. That is why many people specifically consume garlic as a medicine or prevention of certain illnesses or disorders. Consuming garlic can indeed be a natural alternative that can be done to prevent several diseases.
What exactly does garlic contain that is good for the body to consume? The following is a breakdown of the nutritional content and benefits of eating raw garlic for your overall health that you might be curious about.
Garlic Nutrition Content
As a type of tuber, garlic, which has the Latin name Allium Sativum, has a lot of nutritional content. Below is the nutritional content of a head of garlic which usually consists of 1-10 cloves (3 grams) that you need to know:
- 4.5 calories
- 1 gram of carbohydrates
- 0.2 grams of protein
- 0.1 grams of fiber
- 0.01 grams of fat
- 0.03 grams of natural sugar
- 5 milligrams of calcium
- 1 milligram magnesium
- 11 milligrams of potassium
- 3% Manganese for the daily needs of the body
- 1% Selenium daily requirement of the body
- Vitamin C as much as 0.9 milligrams or the equivalent of 2% of the body’s daily needs
- Iron 0.05 milligrams or the equivalent of 3% of the body’s daily needs
- Copper, vitamin B1, and phosphorus
The benefits of eating raw garlic also come from the presence of several active sulfur compounds, such as s-allyl cysteine and diallyl disulfide. When you chew garlic, the sulfur compound that is responsible for the garlic odor will react to form allicin which is beneficial for the body. The following details the benefits of eating raw garlic that you can get if you consume it regularly:
1. Ward off colds, coughs, and inflammation
Consuming garlic in the morning can be a natural remedy to strengthen immunity. The allicin in garlic effectively kills disease-causing bacteria, such as colds, sore throats, and coughs. Its diallyl sulfide also helps fight bacteria in the body.
Research from Advances in Therapy states that taking garlic supplements has a lower risk of getting a cold than people who only take placebo drugs. Clinical Nutrition has also shown research that proves that consuming garlic extract can reduce the risks of getting the flu, which is the easiest disease for humans to catch.
2. Treating Stubborn Acne
Acne is a skin problem that affects one’s appearance. This is why many people use various methods, struggling to get rid of them. One way to get rid of acne naturally is by using garlic. Turns out that raw garlic can be useful for getting rid of even the most stubborn acne.
Research journal from Angewandte Chemie shows that garlic contains allicin. Which can help kill bacteria that cause acne because of its antibacterial properties. Garlic also contains sulfates that are formed from the decomposition of allicin which can help get rid of acne scars, allergies, and other skin diseases.
3. Helps with hair loss
The benefits of eating raw garlic can also overcome hair problems, one of which is hair loss. Garlic contains high levels of sulfur and keratin, which can help strengthen and promote hair growth on the scalp. Especially if you have alopecia or baldness problems, you can consume raw garlic to overcome it.
4. Lowering Cholesterol
Consuming raw garlic before going to bed can help prevent high cholesterol levels in the blood. This is based on a research journal published by the Journal of Postgraduate Medicine which revealed that consuming around 10 grams or 1 to 2 cloves of garlic every day for a month can significantly reduce cholesterol levels.
In addition, other studies also prove this,
the Pakistan Journal of Pharmaceutical Medicine which found the benefits of eating raw garlic can increase the amount of HDL cholesterol or good cholesterol and reduce total cholesterol levels in the blood.
5. Controls Blood Pressure
Apart from cholesterol, eating garlic can help to reduce blood pressure which is usually a trigger for cardiovascular disease. Consuming raw garlic can prevent high blood pressure. Garlic is even considered comparable to generic hypertension drugs. The benefits of eating raw garlic have been put forward by the Pakistan Journal of Pharmaceuticals which revealed that the effect of garlic can lower systolic and diastolic blood pressure which is equivalent to the hypertension drug atenolol.
6. Keeping your Heart Healthy
You can maintain your heart health by regularly consuming raw garlic. Because garlic is effective in lowering bad cholesterol (LDL) levels it can prevent the formation of enzymes in the liver which are usually the cause of cholesterol levels in the body.
It turns out that diallyl trisulfide in garlic can also help protect the heart of people who have had a heart attack or after heart surgery. And people who have experienced heart failure treatment. But there hasn’t been much research to back this up.
7. Offers Anti-inflammatory Effects
Consuming garlic raw is more effective at reducing inflammation than processed garlic. These benefits are regarding the allicin content in garlic. Be warned though as to not consume raw garlic too much. As it may lead to gastrointestinal upset, flatulence, and changes in the intestinal flora.
8. Bone Health
There was research done on animals showing that garlic can minimize bone loss. There was also one that shows that it can increase estrogen levels in women. In addition, there are also studies in postmenopausal women that reveal that raw garlic can reduce signs of estrogen deficiency which can cause bone disorders.
You can feel these benefits if you consume raw garlic regularly. So consuming raw garlic is good for people with osteoporosis which can have a good effect on bones.
9. Prevent Alzheimer’s And Dementia
Raw garlic contains antioxidants that are good to prevent brain tissue problems, such as Alzheimer’s and dementia. Alzheimer’s disease and dementia can be caused by oxidative stress due to free radicals, so consuming antioxidants are effective in preventing it from getting worse. This is also a domino effect because consuming raw garlic is good for lowering blood pressure and cholesterol which can reduce the risk of Alzheimer’s disease and dementia.
10. Reducing the Risk of Cancer
The phenomenal benefit of eating raw garlic is that it can reduce the risk of cancer. Several studies have proven that consuming raw garlic regularly can reduce the risk of developing several types of cancer, such as stomach cancer and colon cancer. The National Cancer Institute even recommends consuming raw garlic instead of dietary garlic supplements.
Consuming raw garlic twice a week can reduce the risk of lung cancer by 40 percent. Garlic can also reduce the risk of prostate cancer with its antioxidant content which can ward off toxins and strengthen the immune system so that it can repair DNA damaged by prostate cancer.
11. Overcoming Impotence
The antioxidants present in garlic can also help to treat erectile dysfunction. The effect is that the blood becomes thinner and the blood flow to the penis will be smoother so that it can stimulate penile erection better.
12. Increases Fertility
The benefits of eating raw garlic to increase fertility have been put forward by the Journal of Herbmed Pharmacology. The research revealed that garlic contains antioxidants that can improve testosterone levels and testicular structure which leads to better sperm quality. Although there is still no further research to show how effective this is.
13. Improve Athletic Performance
Do you like sports? Well, consuming raw garlic can improve your athletic performance. This has been discussed in the Indian Journal of Physiology and Pharmacology research which shows that consuming garlic oil twice a day for six weeks can improve athletic performance, especially in people with heart disease. Although this type of benefit still requires a lot of further research because there are many contradictions in this research still.
14. Fight Bacteria And Fungus
Referring to research conducted by Washington State University, it was revealed that the diallyl sulfide content in garlic can treat Campylobacter bacteria which are usually the cause of digestive disorders. That is why raw garlic can fight bacteria and fungi in humans, even 100 times more effective than antibiotics in general. Thus garlic has great potential as an alternative to natural antibiotics.
15. Relieves Lead Poisoning
In the medical world, lead poisoning is a condition that can lead to very serious health problems. However, one of these symptoms can be alleviated by consuming raw garlic regularly. The content of diallyl sulfide and sulfur in garlic is believed to be able to provide effective protection from heavy metal substances, such as lead, which can enter the human body.
Studies from Basic & Clinical Pharmacology & Toxicology have shown that the content garlic can reduce blood lead levels by up to 19%. This is a study that is conducted on car battery factory employees who have a lot of contact with lead.
16. Maintain a Healthy Brain
Besides being beneficial for maintaining heart health, consuming raw garlic is also beneficial for maintaining a healthy brain. Research from the University of Missouri states that the carbohydrate in garlic can protect brain cells from the effects of aging and disease. These compounds can reduce nitric oxide levels in brain microglial cells while fighting inflammation and oxidative stress.
Microglial cells are useful for maintaining the nervous system health, they can also fight inflammation. But if they produce too much nitric oxide it can cause damage to brain cells. So that is why the drug in garlic can increase microglia cells without causing nitric oxide levels to increase in the brain. So consuming raw garlic can maintain the health of brain cells.
Why are the benefits of garlic better eaten raw? Some people might think that the taste of raw garlic is very unpleasant, especially with the pungent smell.
However, it is believed that garlic nutrition can work optimally in the body when in its freshest conditions.
Although some people may find it weird to consume raw garlic. Consuming it this way can maximize garlic nutrition compared to being processed first or even mixed with other ingredients.
How Much Can You Consume Raw Garlic?
Garlic has properties that can be considered very efficacious. However, do not consume garlic excessively. There’s no official recommended dosage for garlic. However, experts from the University of Maryland Medical Center say, if your condition is healthy and don’t have serious health problems. Then you can consume as much as 1-4 cloves of garlic per day.
But if you have digestive disorders as raw garlic can make them worse. In addition, you should also consult a doctor before consuming raw garlic if you have allergies, asthma, low blood pressure, ulcers, or are going to have a surgical procedure or thyroid problems. You are also advised to reduce garlic consumption if you are taking several medications, such as birth control pills, Isoniazid (Nydrazid, Cyclosporine, HIV/AIDS drugs, NSAID pain medications, and blood thinners (Warfarin).
You also need to pay attention if you like to eat raw garlic. Because it can be dangerous if you consume too much of it. Mostly when consuming raw garlic you will feel a burning sensation in your mouth, diarrhea, nausea, and bad breath or body odor. So consume raw garlic in moderation so that the garlic nutrients can be optimally absorbed by the body.