Mary James

Garlic: Top 10 Proven Health Booster Benefits

The Greek physician Hippocrates

Let food be thy medicine, and medicine be thy food.


For thousands of years, they believed garlic to have medicinal properties. Early men of medicine such as Hippocrates, Pliny and Aristotle encouraged several therapeutic uses for this botanical.

It is most often used as an ingredient in recipes rather than as a main ingredient. The exception is fried garlic, which can be eaten as a spread or seasoning.

As you know, before it became a major ingredient, people used it for thousands of years for its invaluable properties in treating and preventing disease. Here are 10 proven health benefits of garlic that have been confirmed by human research.

#1. Potent Medical Properties

Garlic contains a compound called allicin, which has potent medicinal properties. It is a plant in the onion family, grown for its cooking properties and health effects. It is high in a sulphur compound which is believed to bring most of the health benefits.

#2. Highly Nutritious, Low On Calories

This lily family plant is highly nutritious, but has very few calories. It is low in calories and very rich in vitamin C, vitamin B6 and manganese. It also contains trace amounts of various other nutrients.

Garlic: Top Proven Health Booster Benefits
Garlic: Top Proven Health Booster Benefits

FACT: Garlic contains a compound called allicin, which has potent medicinal properties.

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#3. Combats Sickness

It can combat sickness, including the common cold. Garlic supplementation helps to prevent and reduce the severity of common illnesses like the flu and common cold.

#4. Can Reduce Blood Pressure

The active compounds in garlic can reduce blood pressure. High doses of garlic appear to improve the blood pressure of those with known high blood pressure (also known as hypertension). Sometimes supplementation can be as effective as regular medications.

#5. Improves Cholesterol Levels

It improves cholesterol levels, which may lower the risk of heart disease. Garlic supplementation seems to reduce total and LDL cholesterol, particularly in those who have high cholesterol. HDL cholesterol and triglycerides do not seem to be affected.

Eat Garlic Every Day?

FACT: Garlic contains antioxidants that protect against cell damage and ageing. It may reduce the risk of some diseases.

#6. Protects Against Cell Damage

This flowering plant contains antioxidants that may help prevent Alzheimer’s disease and dementia. Garlic contains antioxidants that protect against cell damage and ageing. It may reduce the risk of some diseases.

#7. Helps To Live Longer

Garlic may help you live longer. It has known beneficial effects on common causes of chronic disease, so it makes perfect sense it could help you live longer. Some researchers in China have called it the key to a longevity.

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Fat Burning Secret: Why Strength Training Surpasses Cardiovascular Workouts

#8. Performance Enhancer

We can improve athletic performance with garlic supplementation. This vegetable was one of the earliest 'performance enhancing' substances.

It was traditionally used in ancient cultures to reduce fatigue and enhance the work capacity of labourers. It can improve physical performance in lab animals and people with heart disease. However, benefits in healthy people are not yet conclusive.

#9. Protects Against Organ Damage

Eating garlic can help detoxify heavy metals in the body. At high doses, it has shown the sulphur compounds in it to protect against organ damage from heavy metal toxicity. Garlic was shown to significantly reduce lead toxicity and related symptoms in one study.

#10. Improves Bone Health

Finally, garlic may improve bone health. It appears to have some benefits for bone health by increasing oestrogen levels in females, but more human studies are needed.

However, keep in mind that there are some downsides to garlic, such as the bad breath. There are also some people allergic to it. If you have a bleeding disorder or are taking blood-thinning medications, then talk to your doctor before increasing your garlic consumption.

The Best Practise

Over the years, garlic has gained a reputation for being consumed only for its strong taste, when in fact it is an excellent health supplement. Garlic has been shown to promote cardiovascular stability, boost the immune system and reduce the risk of certain cancers.

Although the benefits of garlic are now widely accepted by many medical experts, more research is being carried out to determine the true health effects of garlic consumption. To get the full health benefits of garlic, do not add it to food or cook with it immediately.

Slicing, crushing or mincing garlic releases a healthy compound in the vegetable. However, this healthy compound is not released when garlic is heated or added to other ingredients. So chop, crush or mince the garlic and let it rest for a few minutes.

The Bottom Line

The active compound allicin is only formed when garlic is crushed or chopped raw. If you cook garlic before crushing it, it will not have the same health benefits. It is therefore best to eat garlic raw or crushed and chopped and left to stand for a while before adding it to recipes.

Medical research has linked garlic to many health benefits. However, some studies suggest that raw garlic may be more effective than cooked garlic and that garlic supplements are the most effective. Garlic tea preserves the health benefits of raw garlic if it is prepared properly: the most important thing is to boil the crushed garlic for only 3 minutes.

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Absolutely! Garlic contains a compound called allicin, which studies suggest activates immune cells and increases their ability to fight off infections. So, adding garlic to your diet, especially during cold and flu season, might be a natural line of defense.


Yes, there's evidence to support this. Several studies show that garlic consumption can lead to a modest decrease in "bad" LDL cholesterol and an increase in "good" HDL cholesterol, contributing to better heart health.


The research is encouraging! Garlic's vasodilatory properties, meaning it helps relax blood vessels, could potentially contribute to lowering blood pressure, although larger studies are needed to confirm its full impact.


The antioxidant power of garlic might play a role here. Early research suggests it could offer some protection against cognitive decline and even Alzheimer's disease, but more investigation is ongoing.


While it shouldn't replace prescribed antibiotics, garlic's antimicrobial properties might offer some support in fighting bacteria and even some viruses. However, it's crucial to consult a healthcare professional for any infection concerns.


Around 1-2 cloves (roughly 4 grams) per day is generally considered safe and effective. Remember, moderation is key, and consult your doctor if you have any underlying health conditions before increasing your garlic intake significantly.

Remember, garlic is a natural food, not a miracle cure. But incorporating it into your diet along with a balanced lifestyle can contribute to overall well-being. Let the delicious journey to better health begin, one pungent clove at a time!

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About the Author Mary James

I am passionate about fitness, a healthy lifestyle, cooking, and well-being. This blog is about some of my thoughts that are occupying my mind and spirit daily over the last 10 years and my grand passion – weight loss and fitness, healthy lifestyle and healthy food, mindfulness and self-improvement.

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