Everyone will agree with the famous words of the Greek physician Hippocrates- ‘Let food be the medicine, and medicine be the food.’ He used to prescribe garlic water to treat a number of medical conditions. Modern science has also recently confirmed many of these health effects of garlic water. Here are some health benefits of garlic water which are supported by human research.
Health benefits of garlic water
1. Combats common cold
Garlic supplements are found to boost the overall function of the immune systems. A study found that daily garlic supplement significantly reduced the number of the common colds by 63 percent compared to a placebo. The average length of the cold symptoms reduced by 70 percent; from 5 days to just 1.5 days in the garlic group. The second study shows that high dosage of aged garlic extract reduced the overall number of total days sick with flu or cold by 61%. But, a review showed that the evidence is not sufficient and more research is required. Despite lack of strong evidence, including garlic to your diet might be worth trying in case you often get colds.
2. Reduces blood pressure
Cardiovascular diseases such as stroke and heart attacks are the world’s biggest killing diseases. Hypertension or high blood pressure is one of the important causes of these diseases. Studies have found that garlic supplements have a significant impact on lowering the blood pressure in persons with very high blood pressure. In a study, 600 to 1,500 mg of aged garlic extract was found as effective as the drug Atenolol in reducing the blood pressure in 24 weeks. Supplement doses should be fairly high to have the best effects. The amount needed is equal to about four cloves of the garlic per day.
3. Helps you live longer
The important impact of garlic on the longevity are impossible to prove in the humans. However given the beneficial impacts on the important risk factors like blood pressure, this makes sense that the garlic can help people live longer. The perception that it could fight infectious diseases is an important factor, because these are some common causes of death, especially among the elderly or people with dysfunctional immune system.
4. Detoxify heavy metals in body
At high dose, sulfur compound in garlic have been thought to protect against organ damage from the toxicity of heavy metal. A study in the employees of a car battery factory, who had excess exposure to lead, revealed that garlic reduced the lead level in blood by 19%. This also reduced various clinical signs of toxicity, including blood pressure and headaches. Three doses of garlic everyday outperformed the medication D-penicillamine in reducing the symptoms.
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5. Improves bone health
Human studies have failed to measure the effects of the garlic on bone loss. But, rodent studies have revealed that it could minimize the bone loss by increasing the estrogen levels in females. A study in menopausal women revealed a daily dose of the dry garlic extract (equals to 2 gms of raw garlic) decreased the marker of estrogen deficiency. It suggests that the supplement might have other beneficial effects on the bone health in women. Foods such as onions and garlic might also have beneficial effect on osteoarthritis.
6. Helps prevent Alzheimer’s disease
Oxidative damage due to free radicals leads to the aging process. The garlic has antioxidants which support the body’s protective actions against oxidative damage. High dose of garlic supplement has been shown to increase the antioxidant enzymes in the humans, as well as reduce oxidative stress in people with high blood pressure. The combined effects on decreasing cholesterol as well as blood pressure, and the antioxidant properties, might reduce the risks of common brain diseases such as dementia and Alzheimer’s disease.
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7. Improves health of skin and hair
The wonderful properties of garlic can protect the skin from the effects of free radicals and also slow down the reduction of collagen that leads to the loss of elasticity in the aging skin. When applied topically, garlic does wonder to the skin affected with the fungal infections and also provides relief from any skin diseases like eczema. This is also a very effective remedy for all fungal infections like ringworms and athlete’s foot. Everyone knows the wonders of onion for the hair but garlic is no less than a hero for the thinning mane. Rubbing the grinded garlic extract on the scalp or massaging with the garlic oil is found to prevent and also reverse hair loss.