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Updated on December 18, 2012
Frances Bleuet Nutritional Consultant and owner of Nutrition for Weight Loss
Frances Bleuet Nutritional Consultant and owner of Nutrition for Weight Loss

THE HEALTH BENEFITS OF GARLIC Written by Anglea LaMor RMA NCPT and Frances Bleuet owner of Nutrition for Weight Loss

Garlic is a relative of the onion and part of the Lily Family. It originated in Central Asia where it has been known to grow up to three feet. Garlic was first mentioned in the bible where it was used to prevent and cure diseases caused by parasites and to treat infections of the lungs and skin.

Garlic has several medicinal properties believed to have developed in the plant to stop invasion by garden pests. These properties which give garlic its strong aroma and flavor have health benefits for us.

Garlic has anti-inflammatory properties, which means it reduces the pain, swelling and redness associated with inflammation caused by injuries or toxins. Garlic is also known for its antibacterial properties, which means that it fights infections caused by bacteria. The strength of its antibacterial effects is equal to 1% of the strength of the antibiotic penicillin. These properties are effective in killing the bacteria believed to instigate stomach ulcers (and stomach cancer). Garlic has antiviral properties, which means that it fights infections caused by viruses, which antibiotics are useless against (antibiotics only kill bacterial infections). Another rare quality is its antifungal properties (also not killed by antibiotics). It is effective in fighting yeast infections (yeast is a type of fungus) including systemic yeast infection, which means yeast infections that infect the entire body not just one area.


Garlic prevents cardiovascular disease (heart disease) in several ways. It not only thins the blood and lowers blood pressure, but it also lowers blood cholesterol levels and helps to remove fatty build-ups already present in the arteries.


Garlic contains a substance called allicin that has anti carcinogenic (cancer preventing) properties. Garlic also stops the production of free radicals, which can roam through the body changing normal cells into malignant (cancerous) cells. It also prevents tumors from forming, growing and spreading.

Throughout history garlic has been used as a flavor enhancer, medicine, preservative, to enhance supernatural powers (especially in women) and to ward off evil spirits.

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    • Peggy W profile image

      Peggy Woods 

      8 years ago from Houston, Texas

      We also love garlic and nice to know so many beneficial effects from eating it. Rating this hub useful.

    • ethel smith profile image

      Ethel Smith 

      8 years ago from Kingston-Upon-Hull

      Very useful thanks. I knew little of garlic other than I love it


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