The Wonders Of Garlic!

July 21, 2019


Garlic: a wonder herb!  It has been used as a food-flavoring agent, as well as in traditional medicine for over 3,000 years ago.


Only relatively recently has science seemingly caught up with what the ancients seemed to have known long ago—that garlic really is good for you! Sir Louis Pasteur, the scientist who discovered pasteurization, effectively utilized the anti-bacterial qualities of this herb as long as in 1858.


But it has been found in the Egyptian pyramids and ancient Greek temples. It has been referenced in the Bible, and in ancient medical texts from Egypt, Rome, China, and Greece. Garlic was even prescribed by Hippocrates for several conditions, and was given to the original Olympic athletes in Greece to enhance their physical performance.


Garlic is very nutritious and has few calories. A 1-oz (28 g) serving contains 23% of the recommended dietary allowance (RDA) of manganese, 17% RDA of vitamin B6, 15% RDA of vitamin C, 6% RDA of selenium, and 0.6 g of fiber. Garlic also contains calcium, iron, vitamin B1, copper, potassium, and phosphorus. All this for only 42 calories and 9 g of carbohydrates.

When garlic is crushed, chopped, or chewed, sulfuric compounds are formed. These include—but are not limited to—allicin, which is present only briefly in fresh garlic, diallyl disulfide, and S-allyl cysteine.


Let's review proven benefits of this lowly bulb.


Boosts immune function, and help fight viruses, like the common cold by 60 %.[1] 


Improves blood pressure in high doses (4 gloves a day) [2].


Improves cholesterol, lowering the risk of heart disease. Garlic can lower total and LDL (bad) cholesterol levels by approximately 10% to 15%, and possibly raise HDL (good) levels.[3]


Contains antioxidants to fight oxidative damage. Antioxidants protect us against the cellular damage and aging. [4]


Lower risks of developing neurological diseases such as dementia and Alzheimer’s disease.[5]


Lowers the risks of some cancers. Researchers have documented the benefits of garlic in several cancers:

  • Lung cancer [6]

  • Glioblastoma [7]

  • Prostate cancer [8]

  • Breast cancer[9]

Protects against organ damage induced by heavy-metal toxicity[10]


Improves bone health, treats osteoporosis. [11]


Protects against alcohol-induced and fatty liver injury[12],


There are many more benefits, including weight loss, prevent hair loss, lower the risk of spontaneous premature delivery, improves stamina, etc.


Another plus for garlic is that it is an essential part of the Mediterranean diet, which has been linked to lower risks for various chronic diseases, better quality of life, better brain health, and longevity. Garlic is easy to include in your diet. For when you do, here are some tips:

  • Pick the freshest bulbs. Make sure garlic skin is tight, and not loose, dry, or moldy. The fresher the garlic, the more concentrated the ingredients and nutrients. And although garlic can keep for months when stored properly, it’s better to eat it within a week.

  • Store it correctly. Keep garlic in a cool, dry place, with good ventilation.

  • Chop it. Just the action of chopping, slicing, or smashing garlic releases the healthy compounds it contains.

  •  You can use it in salads, soups, and stews, and on vegetable, fish, and meat. 

Scientists have shown that the anti-inflammatory benefits of raw garlic are reduced by even short-term heating. Raw garlic may be best, but the side effects of that include garlic breath (for everyone) and indigestion (for some).


Researchers studied the best way to reduce garlic breath, and concluded that eating apples, lettuce, or raw mint leaves after a meal laden with garlic will help neutralize its sulfuric compounds, which are what cause the strong odor.[13,14]


For more information on healthy lifestyle choices please schedule an appointment with Dr. Koganski at 215-750-7000 or



1. Josling P. Preventing the common cold with a garlic supplement: a double-blind, placebo-controlled survey. Adv Ther. 2001 Jul-Aug;18(4):189-93.

2. Karin Ried et al.  Aged garlic extract lowers blood pressure in patients with treated but uncontrolled hypertension: A randomised controlled trial . doi:

3. Karin Ried et al. Effect of garlic on serum lipids: an updated meta-analysis .Nutrition Reviews, Volume 71, Issue 5, 1 May 2013, Pages 282–299,

4. Amagase H et al. Intake of garlic and its bioactive components.J Nutr. 2001 Mar;131(3s):955S-62S. doi: 10.1093/jn/131.3.955S.

5. Borek C. Garlic reduces dementia and heart-disease risk. J Nutr. 2006 Mar;136(3 Suppl):810S-812S. doi: 10.1093/jn/136.3.810S.

6. Zi-Yi Jin,et al. Raw Garlic Consumption as a Protective Factor for Lung Cancer, a Population-Based Case–Control Study in a Chinese Population. Cancer Prev Res; 6(7);

 711–8. ©2013 AACR. doi: 10.1158/1940-6207.CAPR-13-0015 Published July 2013

7. Arabinda Das PhD et al. Garlic compounds generate reactive oxygen species leading to activation of stress kinases and cysteine proteases for apoptosis in human glioblastoma T98G and U87MG cells.

8.Zhou, Xiao-Feng et al.  Allium Vegetables and Risk of Prostate Cancer: Evidence from 132,192 Subjects. Asian Pacific Journal of Cancer Prevention Volume 14 Issue 7 / Pages.4131-4134 / 2013 / 1513-7368(pISSN) / 1513-7368(eISSN)

9. Nakagawa H et al .Growth inhibitory effects of diallyl disulfide on human breast cancer cell lines. Carcinogenesis. 2001 Jun;22(6):891-7

10. Sina Kianoush et al. Comparison of Therapeutic Effects of Garlic and d‐Penicillamine in Patients with Chronic Occupational Lead Poisoning.

11. Hassan Mozaffari-Khosravi et al. The Effect of Garlic Tablet on Pro-inflammatory Cytokines in Postmenopausal Osteoporotic Women: A Randomized Controlled Clinical Trial.

12. Xiao J et al. Garlic-Derived S-Allylmercaptocysteine Ameliorates Nonalcoholic Fatty Liver Disease in a Rat Model through Inhibition of Apoptosis and Enhancing Autophagy. Evid Based Complement Alternat Med. 2013;2013:642920

13. .


doi: 10.1155/2013/642920. Epub 2013 Jun 19

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