Years ago I could stand on one side of Neutral bays very busy Military road, and take in the inescapable thick smell of garlic oozing from my favorite Greek restaurant,"The little Delphi". Strong enough to elicit the pungent fumes over the toxic bitumen and exhaust wastes. There is nothing quite like the enticing aroma of garlic wafting up your nostrils stimulating the prospect of an infusion of culinary delights and may be even disarm the odd vampire or two! Powerful enough to have medicinal properties and healing protection against the Tudor plague and and in folklore,supernatural evils. Seriously, even up until the 1970s in Romanian churches and in southern Slovak, garlic was offered to the congregations to establish who potentially was a vampire or not? Allium sativa - organo sulphur compound, a member of the liliaceae family, garlic, (allium sativum) is a highly regarded botanical known as a seasoning or spice with many health benefits.
Traditionally as far back as ancient Egypt, as early as 3000 BC Early men of medicine such as Hippocrates, Pliny and Aristotle encouraged a number of therapeutic uses for this botanical. Garlic also stands as the second most utilized supplement (1,2) Medicinal properties were well known to both the Egyptians as well as the Romans, though it tended to be a lower class food as the nobility could not handle the unpleasant smell.
Due to the functional benefits of garlic it stands to reason why it is one of the second most utilized supplements on this planet either in its natural state or in an extracted state. Known for its antimicrobial activity, anticancer activity, antioxidant activity, ability to reduce cardiovascular diseases, improving immune functions, and anti-diabetic activity. Allicin (diallyl-thio-sulfinate) is one of the major organosulfur compounds in garlic considered to be biologically active. (1) This sulphur containing compound has high trace mineral content and enzymes.
So how does garlic benefit us?
For a long time now science has proven that Oxidative modification of DNA, proteins and lipids by reactive oxygen species (ROS) plays a role in aging and disease. Diseases, including cardiovascular, neurodegenerative and inflammatory diseases and cancer. Extracts of fresh garlic that are aged over a prolonged period to produce aged garlic extract (AGE) contain antioxidant phytochemicals that prevent oxidant damage. (3)
Substantial experimental evidence shows the ability of AGE to protect against oxidant-induced disease, acute damage from aging, radiation and chemical exposure, and long-term toxic damage.
AGE exerts antioxidant action by scavenging ROS, enhancing the cellular antioxidant enzymes superoxide dismutase, catalase and glutathione peroxidase, and increasing glutathione in the cells.(3) Not that you should remember all of this , but if a practitioner asks you why you are using garlic you can sprout off these enzymes which if not understood fully sounds intelligent!!
It has been determined that Long-term extraction of garlic (up to 20 mo) ages the extract, creating antioxidant properties by modifying unstable molecules with antioxidant activity. Ok, here is the fun part, such as allicin. This also increases stable and highly bioavailable water-soluble organosulfur compounds, such as S-allylcysteine and S-allylmercaptocysteine.
Modern technology has enabled herbal manufacturers to analyse the amazing phytochemical composition of garlic confirming its undisputed antibacterial, antiviral, antifungal and immune enhancing properties, making it an all-round winner winter remedy. In addition, garlic has strong anticoagulant properties, making it a good herb for high blood pressure and cardiovascular health. Another amazing quality of garlic is that it’s very high in inulin, a type of fructan which is consumed by both the beneficial gut bacteria such as Bifido and Lactobacilli. Up to 16% of a garlic clove is inulin, so when consuming garlic, you’re getting a great dose of both the anti-bacterial compounds and prebiotic effect at the same time.
I get so excited to really see the potential of healing ability within nature so I have put together a traditional remedy called an oxymel for you to enjoy at home. In order to get the most out of your garlic you have to consume it raw. Garlic’s superb antibacterial properties come from the allicin, which is only created when garlic is freshly chopped or crushed. This oxymel based on manuka honey and garlic is an ancient remedy to ward off colds, aching throats, candida, yeast infections, skin problems, respiratory problems and your best friends! Drink about 5 mls/d with or without food but potentially sit back and watch your health ignite !
Your garlic oxymel
1 Mohammad Shafiur Rahman International Journal of Food Properties Volume 10, Issue 2, 2007 Special Issue: Functional Foods DOI: 10.1080/10942910601113327 a* pages 245-268
2 Journal of complementary and integrative medicine ed by Chan, Kelvin; Ko, Robert; Leung.Kelvin Sye-Yin; Suntres, Zacharias;Zhang, Zhang-Jin 2008
3 Borek,Carmia; Antioxidant Health effects of aged garlic extract © 2001 The American Society for Nutritional Sciences
© 2016, symbiosiswellbeing.com.au. All rights reserved.Medical information provided on this website is not intended as a substitute for advice from a registered physician or other healthcare professional. Individualized nutritional counselling provided .
Caroline is a clinical Nutritionist practicing on a consultation basis. Caroline's experience encompasses research and writing on disease prevention with natural herbs, spices, foods and supplementation. Caroline practices holistic nutritional medicine that combines the three elements of being human. Those being, the physical , emotional and the mental components that make us who we are. All of these criterior is fueled by the fundamental of all health, food .