When I was younger I used to listen to Michael Van Straten talking about using garlic for health purposes all the time.
Michael Van Straten is a naturopath, osteopath, nutritional consultant and acupuncturist. Additionally he is a journalist, broadcaster and medical author who has sold more than 40 million books worldwide.
It seemed that every radio show that Michael used to do he would mention garlic. I used to wonder, what's the big deal with this garlic? I really didn't like the taste or smell of it when I was younger. Now I understand the health benefits of garlic lot better than I did before.
Garlic contains allicin; it is a powerful antibiotic as well as anti fungal compound. A microbiologist called Ron Cutler who works at the University of East London, published research showing that allicin, destroys numerous strains of MRSA.
Mehmet Oz, a director of the Heart Institute and medical director of the Integrated Medicine Center at New York-Presbyterian/Columbia University said
"Allicin is a fascinating mechanism that plants use to protect themselves."
In the following two videos biochemist Peter Josling, director of the The Garlic Centre and author of 'Allicin, the Heart of Garlic', speaks about garlic allicin and MRSA.
Garlic also contains vitamin B6, C, magnesium, calcium and iron. Vitamin B cuts down levels of homocysteine; this is a substance which can directly cause damage to blood vessel walls.
A study published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, showed that consuming garlic appears to improve our bodies hydrogen sulfide supply. Hydrogen sulfide is poisonous when at high concentrations. However our bodies make their own supply of it.
Numerous population studies done in China concentrated on cancer risk and garlic consumption.
In one of the studies, investigators found that regular garlic consumption as well as consumption of various types of chives and onions was associated with decreased risk of stomach and esophageal cancers. Greater risk reductions were seen for more elevated levels of consumption.
Eleven international studies were looked at by scientists in which people were given powdered garlic supplement daily for between three and five months.
What they found is that blood pressure decreased considerably. The greatest decreases occurred with those who had the highest blood pressure readings. In some of the cases the effects were comparable to those attained with usual anti blood pressure drugs.