Okay, so we’ll be the first to admit that garlic isn’t the most glamorous of ingredients and it’s certainly one to avoid when you’re still in ‘first date’ territory, but believe it or not, garlic offers a whole host of health benefits. We thought we’d take you through the ways in which garlic can help you (and try to convince you that the benefits of the STINK outweigh the negatives!)
The stinky part of the garlic comes from a compound called ‘allicin’, which is also the part which offers the most benefit to your health. Amongst other things, allicin is excellent for maintaining good digestive health, helping to keep you regular and reduce bloating.
Although garlic contains barely any calories, it’s massively high in a number of vitamins and minerals, such as Manganese, Vitamins B6 and C and Selenium, as well as Calcium, Copper, Potassium, Phosphorus, Iron and Vitamin B1. This means that by adding it to your food, you’re effectively taking a completely natural multivitamin, which is excellent for your hair and nails.
Although there’s no cure for the common cold, it’s widely accepted that garlic can be a potent ally against the symptoms. One study into the effects of garlic on the common cold showed that the length of the cold was reduced, on average, from 7 days to just one and a half with a daily dose of garlic.
High blood pressure is a huge problem which is estimated to affect over one in four adults in the UK and garlic has been shown to drastically improve it. In fact, in some studies, a high daily dose of garlic has been shown to be equally as effective as certain pharmaceuticals which are regularly prescribed by GP’s for the condition.
Improving Your Workouts
It seems crazy but garlic has actually been shown to improve performance during levels of high activity – one study showed “subjects with heart disease that took garlic oil for 6 weeks had a reduction in peak heart rate of 12% and improved their exercise capacity” while another study showed quicker recovery rates with a daily dose of garlic. We’re not suggesting that you wolf down a garlic bread before your step class, but investing in some capsules could definitely help!