Garlic is an indispensable part of all the types of cuisines prepared in every part of the world. Its irresistible aroma and distinct flavour renders unique identities to popular dishes like pizza toppings, pastas, meat preparations, curries, etc. Originating in Central Asia, garlic is extensively used in Asian cuisines and apart from being a popular food seasoning, it is also known for its medicinal properties. Studies suggest that garlic is extremely rich in antioxidants and the sulphur containing compound known as Allicin found in fresh garlic even has anti-fungal and anti-bacterial properties.
Since ancient times, people have been using garlic not only for livening up their dishes but also to treat most common ailments. Medical research found that every 100 grams of garlic will serve with 33 grams of carbs, 6.36 grams of protein while also enriching your health with calcium, iron, vitamin B1, B2, B3, B6, folate, Vitamin C, potassium, sodium, manganese, magnesium, etc.
However, ambiguity still remains as to whether eating garlic is beneficial or injurious to health. This is because of some possible side effects associated with garlic consumption. Here are some advantages and disadvantages of consuming garlic that can help in regulating your garlic intake:-
Advantages Of Eating Garlic
Research suggests a strong link between consumption of garlic and reduction in risk of cancer. Regular intake of garlic is proved to have significant effect in lowering risk of various types of cancer such as colon, stomach, breast, gastrointestinal, pancreas and oesophagus. As per reports released by the National Cancer Institute, garlic contains anti-bacterial properties which have the potential to block the formation of cancer causing cells. In addition, garlic stimulates the immune system which further fights cancer and other diseases. However, heating garlic can cause reduction in its anti-cancer properties.
Recommended: These 11 Foods Can Help in Preventing Cancer
Your Heart’s Best Friend
Your heart can deal with several cardiovascular problems if you consume garlic on regular basis. High blood pressure, heart attack, atherosclerosis and various other heart diseases can be tackled if you regularly consume crushed garlic that contains a sulphur rich compound named allicin. This allicin is abundant with several sulphur based compounds that helps in relaxing the blood vessels, lowers blood pressure and therefore reduces the risk of heart attack. Garlic is also known for its thinning effect on blood, which helps in easy movement of blood through arteries, thus preventing heart attacks and strokes.
Best Solution For Cold & Flu
Consuming 2 to 3 garlic cloves in raw or cooked form or having it as garlic ginger honey tea can not only provide you relief from stubborn cold and flu but also boost your immunity level. Various nutritionists and health experts have revealed that garlic can fight various kinds of infections, which is why having them everyday with hot stews, broths or soups can help your body fight the bacteria and viruses responsible for various types of diseases.
In case you are fed up of consuming those blood purifying liquids or using layers of concealer for getting that flawless skin, then it is time to go the natural way. Healthy skin requires uprooting the main reason for zits and acne issues, which is why you must start consuming 2 to 3 garlic cloves with warm water every morning for purifying your blood. Have loads of water and ritually consume garlic to flush out the toxins and give the natural cleanse to your internal system. When you are healthy within, you will definitely boast a healthy skin.
Works Magic On Skin & Hair
Not only does garlic help in sorting out acne issues, but it can handle various other skin disorders efficiently. The revitalising properties of garlic help in fighting the free radical effect on skin and improve elasticity in ageing skin. Skin infected with fungal bacteria can be treated by topical application of garlic. It can also be useful in treating skin conditions like eczema, ringworms and athlete’s foot. Coming to hair, most of us are aware of the magical benefits of onion in improving hair health. But garlic can prove to be your hair’s life saviour if you are suffering from hair loss. Gently rubbing crushed garlic on the scalp or massaging your scalp with garlic infused oil can prevent loss, induce shine and even stimulate growth of hair.
Disadvantages Of Consuming Garlic
Bad Breath & Body Odour
Eating raw garlic or too much of it can lead to bad breath which is often termed as garlic breath. Apart from bad breath that is comparatively easy to deal with, excessive garlic intake can cause foul body odour, which is mainly due to presence of Allyl Methyl Sulfide (AMS) in garlic. AMS when gets absorbed into the blood, it travels to the lungs and then the mouth leading to garlic breath. It also gets exuded from the pores of the skin causing bad body odour. If you can’t really avoid eating garlic in high quantities, then applying soap can do little to provide relief from the pungent smell.
Allergies & Other Health Hazards
Many people may suffer from garlic allergies and common symptoms include diarrhoea, mouth and throat ulcers, irritable bowel, difficulty in breathing, nausea, etc. People who are allergic to garlic may also be allergic to lilies, chives, bananas, onions, ginger, leek, etc. It has also been researched that people who consume garlic supplements for its miraculous health benefits sometimes have to face adverse effects like dizziness, sweating, allergic reactions, gastrointestinal discomfort, etc.
Unsafe For Pregnant Women
No doubt garlic has healing properties but studies reveal that intake of garlic supplements by pregnant women can lead to reduction in platelet aggregation. This is why garlic supplements are considered to be harmful for pregnant women and it may also cause bleeding during pregnancy.
Skin Burns From Use Of Topical Medications Containing Garlic
Various medical reports suggest that some people who used garlic on skin through topical medication suffered from severe skin burns. While garlic is often used topical for different reasons in naturopathy and for treating acne, it has also led to painful skin burns in many cases. It has been studied that topical use of raw garlic and inserting garlic in body cavities can have hazardous effects on health.