Forever Garlic

Ageless and forever faithful, is our friend, Garlic! Sometimes stinks, sometimes stings, but never lets you down. Can’t shake a cold or cough, itchy or sore throat, the flu? Put garlic to work on it. In a matter of days, hours or even minutes, the itch disappears, a cough softens, breathing returns to normal and healing is in progress. From the minor maladies to more serious medical conditions – chronic bronchitis, asthma, even, tuberculosis, cardiovascular disease, and certain forms of cancer – garlic is at your service! Who can neglect a dependable friend like that – one that loves to heal YOU!

Garlic Health: The Power of Garlic

Dr. Oz, host of the TV health show by the same name, recently remarked to a woman who liked to eat a lot of garlic, “You’re probably the healthiest person in this audience!” That comment speaks from a knowledge and faith in this humble herb by a medical professional who understands the power of garlic to protect our health.

Acting as a multi-spectrum antibiotic, garlic kills a wide range of  bacteria including  streptococcus and even the MRSA (antibiotic resistant) form of staphylococcus.  Garlis is also effective against certain viruses, including viral meningitis, viral pneumonia, and the herpes virus.  It is anti fungal and anti-yeast, it even inhibits the growth of parasites in the intestines. Recent research has proven its preventative and therapeutic effectiveness against high blood pressure, atherosclerosis, stroke, cholesterol, as well as pre-cancerous stomach, bowel lesions and breast cancer.  It is also being used in treating HIV patients;  And, to boot, it favorably works against candidiatis, athlete’s foot, arthritis, altitude sickness, blood clots and has been known, historically, to treat snake bites, diarrhea, heat exhaustion, plague, leprosy and smallpox.

Garlic History and Lore

It is no wonder that garlic has been used by more cultures for medicinal purposes for the longest of time than any other plant herb known to mankind. One of the earliest evidence of its use is from – you might have guessed – the ancient Egyptian tombs, dating from 3,200 B.C. The Pyramid builders extolled its use, believing it gave them strength. Reference to its use is inscribed on the Great Pyramid of Cheops. Among the ancients, Pliny mentions garlic as healing 61 different ailments. In more recent times, it is claimed that garlic helped save the lives of thousands of wounded soldiers in World War I and II when antibiotics were in short supply. Garlic juice diluted with water was used to stop and heal deadly infections. Its use as a stimulant of the sexual glands is another side effect, not often mentioned by writers.

Not to forget the use of garlic against vampires: the origin of this idea and the effectiveness of such a claim remain controversial, to say the least. In Bram Stocker’s, Dracula, a doctor places a garlic necklace around the throat of a woman and rubs garlic around the room as a means of keeping the fanged one out of bounds.

It has been surmised that disease-causing mosquitoes, vampire bats, and the like, that literally suck blood from their host in the middle of the night, leaving a changed (sickened) state in the victim may account for the origin of the Dracula myth. Garlic has been worn on the body to ward off life-sapping “evils” even in more recent times.

Americans wore garlands of garlic to protect themselves from the epidemic influenza in 1918. With the surge of the Swine Flu in 2009 garlic production and sales boomed around the world. In the markets of Belgrade, Serbia, for example, demand for the herb skyrocketed as panic spread after 270 cases of the flu were reported with 8 deaths. Serbs as well as other peoples of the Balkans place much importance on garlic; they even keep it on doorsteps or carry it in their pockets to chase vampires away; they also place it under babies’ pillows to protect their health.

Eating Garlic for Health

Garlic’s effectiveness, however, comes through eating it! Fresh, raw, if possible, is the best form in which to have it. Grated or minced directly on bread with some olive oil and a pinch of salt, for example! Or chopped into a salad or cooked vegetables and eaten promptly. The very powerful active ingredient, allicin, is released upon crushing the raw garlic. Although cooked or dried garlic still maintains some of its curative properties, its potency is tied to the fresh, raw state.

Since garlic has been used around the globe for centuries, recipes from many cultures abound. Very prominently are recipes from China, which, by the way, produces 77% of all garlic worldwide. Who hasn’t heard of Garlic Chicken, or Beef and Broccoli with Garlic Sauce. Italy is a great garlic user, with almost all pizzas containing some chopped or powdered garlic . Other Italian dishes using garlic, such as, Garlic Chicken Alfredo, and Garlic Shrimp come to mind. The recently re-discovered Mediterranean Diet uses garlic as a staple in its cooking.  Virtually every country in the world uses garlic as a seasoning and for medicinal purposes.

While garlic’s medicinal benefits cannot be disputed, there remain a few concerns with its use, or rather, misuse, principally because of its potent ingredients, including sulfurous compounds. If raw garlic is stored in oil at room temperatures, for example, or even in the refrigerator, over time, it may become the breeding ground for botulism, a dangerous stomach ailment that can lead to death. Garlic is also known to interfere with some anti-coagulants used in surgery. Like with any kind of food, some people may simply be allergic to garlic, and of course, garlic can sting or burn sensitive skin or stomach lining, so caution and a sensible approach to eating it is always advisable!

Centuries of use around the world confirm garlic’s acceptance and effectiveness! For health and for flavor be a Garlic fan. Have it every day! You can’t go wrong with garlic. It IS a Forever Friend!

{ 5 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Pablo June 7, 2010 at 3:43 am

I’ve been taking raw garlic (4 cloves a day) for 2 months now. And it really works wonders. I feel better now! :-)

2 theme daniel October 22, 2011 at 5:38 pm

raw garlic is my best Health Insurance for the past 12 years……incredible

3 Hank January 26, 2012 at 1:49 pm

I saw a Broadway play about 20 years ago entitled “The Delaney Sisters” it was about two sisters that lived together all their lives. Each night they would eat a clove of raw garlic before going to bed. They lived to be over 110 years old. I started taking garlic then and did feel better. I stopped for a few years and when I caught a cold one year I remembered garlic. It worked again. I have been taking garlic nightly now and it is natures wonder. At 54 I take it even for muscle pain and wake up feeling great.

4 Kitty March 24, 2012 at 8:35 am

I’ve been reading up on how all those “ease a cold” and “lemsip” products do nothing to help you. All they do is hide away the symptoms of illness, but infact by doing that they prolong your illness buy not letting the body recover on it’s own. I thought i was doomed to be ill with this flu/cold/tosilitis as i already have a very weak immune system. But i came along an old cooking friend Garlic. This stuff is amazing and i think more people really need to know how amazing it is. There’s no lie on scam in Garlic. The only person that benifits is you! It’s been 12 hours since i started eating 2 cloves with soup, 3 meals a day to get rid of my sore throat and allready i’m feeling so much better. GARLIC IS TRULEY AMAZING. I will keep you up dated on how long it takes for a full recovery.

5 Jerry Johnston April 9, 2012 at 2:55 pm

Seattle has bad weather, or rather overcast, misty, sprinkling, just basically wet, and cold weather, which if you work outside or a living , you gonna get sick. I was in the Carpenter Union where the scale is over 30 a hr. and coming out of the hall, you know you job is going to last as long as you don’t miss a day, cause if you do, they’ll just call the hall for a new man. Being a forman and general forman now, even if I have a friend I want to keep, I just can’t let them miss a day, so I started my crews on a clove of garlic before the morning shift, so I could keep one crew and not constantly have to retrain. After 8 months I was able to keep the same guys cause no one got sick. I worked for me and I knew it would work for the crew. Unless you have a crappy diet, and your hitting the fast food restaurants all the time, I really don’t think your going to get sick while at least on 1 clove of garlic a day.

Leave a Comment