HEALTH AND NUTRITION

Experts outline medicinal value of eating garlic

It helps attack viruses before they make their way into your system.

In Summary

•Before you cook with crushed garlic, leave it for 10 minutes.

•Garlic has traditionally been used to treat diseases throughout history however, science is beginning to confirm its health benefits. 

Garlic has long been incorporated into many dishes for its flavour, however in a post pandemic environment, its nutritional benefits have become clear. 

The Covid-19 pandemic provoked increased demand for the herb, so much so that countries like China experienced a surge in prices.

Garlic has traditionally been used to treat diseases through history however, science is beginning to confirm its health benefits. 

Image: WIKIHOW

A study published in the Nutrition Journal, confirms that the herb activates a wide range of microorganisms including bacteria, fungi, protozoa and viruses.

Regularly eating garlic may help prevent the common cold or the flu. If you do get sick, eating garlic may reduce the severity of your symptoms and help you recover faster.

According to Healthline, the way garlic is processed or prepared can change its health benefits.

Allicin and other sulphur compounds are thought to be the major antimicrobial agents in garlic.

Allicin is created when garlic cloves are cut or crushed.

The enzyme alliinase, which converts alliin into the beneficial allicin, only works under certain conditions. It can also be deactivated by heat.

However, it is said that crushing garlic and allowing it to stand for 10 minutes before cooking can help prevent the loss of its medicinal properties.

The researchers also stated that the loss of health benefits due to cooking could be negated by increasing the amount of garlic used.

Allicin contains sulfur, which gives garlic its distinctive smell and taste.

However, allicin is unstable, so it quickly converts to other sulphurous compounds that are thought to give garlic its medicinal properties

These compounds have been shown to boost the disease-fighting response of some types of white blood cells in the body when they encounter viruses, such as the viruses that cause the common cold or flu.

Ultimately, eating garlic helps wipe out viruses before they make their way into your system.

All in all, garlic is a healthy, natural ingredient that can certainly manage and possibly prevent cold and flu symptoms

Here are a few ways to maximize the health benefits of garlic:

  • Crush or slice all your garlic before you eat it. This increases the allicin content.
  • Before you cook with your crushed garlic, let it stand for 10 minutes.
  • Use a lot of garlic — more than one clove per meal, if you can.

 

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