Garlic Supplement - Health Benefits of Garlic
Botanical Name: Allium sativum
Family Name : Liliaceae
A garden vegetable, cultivated from time immemorial. It is a food, a herb, a medicinal plant, an antiseptic etc. It is very wellknown, bulbous, herbaceous plant which grows to about 40 inches (1 m) high. The bulb consists of 8-10 curved bulbets (cloves). The stem is erect and hollow.
The garlic plant has long, narrow, flat, obscurely keeled leaves. The bulb has a flaky, mostly white outer layers of skin like that of an onion. Inside are 2-20 cloves, or smaller bulbs. From these, new bulbs can be procured by planting out in late winter or early spring. Like other members of the onion family, garlic actually creates the chemicals that give it its sharp flavor when the plant's cells are damaged. When a cell of a garlic clove is broken by chopping, chewing, or crushing, enzymes stored in cell vacuoles trigger the breakdown of several sulfur -containing compounds stored in the cell fluids. The resultant compounds are responsible for the sharp or hot taste and strong smell of garlic.
Origin and Distribution
Originated in Central Asia, garlic has been cultivated in Mediterranean countries for many centuries and in Britain since the beginning of the 16th Century. It was known to Chinese much earlier (3000 Be). Even today, it is a regular item of Chinese diet and is regarded as a medicine for several ailments. It is now widely grown in India, China, Philippines, Brazil & Mexico. It is gathered in July-August.
Properties of garlic
Antibiotic, hypoglycaemic, hypotensive, anthelmintic, carminative, intestinal disinfectant, anti-rheumatic, cornremover, anti-malarial, rubefacient.
Forms of Use :- Tincture, fluid and semi-fluid extract, ointment, poultice.
Food Value of garlic
Hippocrates, the father of modern medicine (460-357 Be), who taught and practiced in ancient Athens, recommended the use of this vegetable in infectious diseases, especially intestinal diseases.
An analysis of 100 gm's garlic shows the presence of: Moisture 62.0%
Traces of iodine, sulphur, chlorine and selenium apart from small amounts of vitamin B-Complex.
Medicinal Uses & benefits
Garlic is recommended for asthma, bronchial congestion, arteriosclerosis, worms, liver and gall bladder problems. Garlic is also good for heart, digestion, skin diseases, piles and cough. Charak, ancient Indian old physician, once told that only anomaly in garlic is its bad smell
According to Dr. M.W. McDuffic of the Metropolitan Hospital, New York, "Garlic contains a volatile oil, called allyl sulphide and its medical properties depend on this oil. Strongly antiseptic, it seems to have a remarkable power of inhibiting the growth of the Koch's bacillus, eliminated by the lungs, skin, kidneys and liver, and oxidizes sulphonic acid in the system."
Garlic is a rejuvenator, easily absorbed by our skin and reaches deep in the tissues-bones, glands, lungs; removes toxins, revitalizes the blood, stimulates blood circulation and normalizes intestinal flora. Its other uses are:
Garlic is most often used as a seasoning or a condiment. When crushed or finely chopped it yields allicin, a powerful antibiotic and anti-fungal compound (phytoncide). It also contains alliin, ajoene, enzymes, vitamin B, minerals, and flavonoids. Garlic is widely used in many forms of cooking for its strong flavour, which is considered to enhance many other flavours. Depending on the form of cooking and the desired result, the flavour is either mellow or intense. It is often paired with onion and tomato.
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