Best Garlic Supplement
Out of all the different types of edible plants, you can eat, have you ever thought about which one could be the most beneficial to you? Well, the answer to the plant being the most beneficial can completely depend on what you're seeking from it in terms of taste, appearance, and health. One plant that constantly tops the list or is in the upper part of many other lists is garlic.
Garlic has some remarkable health benefits if you consume it regularly. On average, adults should consume around 4grams or 1-2 cloves of raw garlic every day, but this can be a difficult task with today on the go lifestyle. If you're outgoing or spend a lot of time at the office, you may not find the time to consume the number of garlic you like. Therefore, to help you consume the recommended daily amount, you can take garlic supplements. But, before we explore garlic supplements, let's look at garlic properly.
What is garlic?
Garlic is a vegetable that falls under the onion family; other members in its family are chives, leeks, and shallots. It's renowned for its distinct bulb structure, tall stem, and long leaves. Inside, the bulb contains 10-20 edible cloves. Protecting the cloves and the bulb is a thin paper-like material, which is removed before you can eat the garlic. Even though it's a vegetable, it tends to be used more as a spice or seasoning and is hardly ever consumed just on its own. Instead, garlic is commonly added to dishes to provide a strong flavor. Garlic gives off a chemical known as allicin when cooked. This contributes to the strong taste and flavor of food.
It can be crushed, cooked, or chopped when added to a dish. Similarly, it has an abundance of health benefits such as reducing cholesterol, lowering blood pressure, enhances immunity, decreases blood clotting risk, anti-micro bacterial effects, helps respiratory infections, and much more.
How does garlic work?
Inside garlic, some antioxidants help protect your body from oxidative damage. Large amounts of garlic have been shown to boost antioxidant enzymes and decrease oxidative stress within the body.
Conditions that can be treated
Garlic has lots of medicinal properties which can help:
- Colds and flu: Raw garlic has been known to have antibacterial properties and antiviral properties which protect you against colds and flu. When raw garlic is crushed, chopped, or chewed, it's known to release a sulfur compound that helps fight off cold.
- Better blood pressure: There's research that indicates that garlic can help increase the amount of nitric oxide your body produces. Nitric oxide helps your smooth muscle relaxation and causes your blood vessels to dilate. As a result, it can reduce systolic and diastolic blood pressure.
- Lower risk of heart disease: Due to the release of nitric oxide, garlic has been known to help slow down the atherosclerosis of vessels lowering the chances of heart disease happening.
- Improve memory: Garlic contains antioxidants that help your body work against free radicals and fight off oxidative damage that causes cognitive decline. Therefore, contributing to better brain function and memory.
- Better skin: Allicin produced from garlic has antifungal, antiseptic, and antiviral properties, which help kill bad bacteria on your skin. Because of this, inflammation and swelling are fought off, and so are skin diseases like acne.
These are just a few conditions that garlic can help. To know more, please check out our top 10 list of garlic supplements.
Types of supplements
There are various garlic supplements out there; the best garlic supplements are personal; it can all come down to your preference and tolerance. You can take the following garlic supplements:
Dehydrated or powdered garlic capsules
This type of supplement involves garlic cloves becoming dehydrated and made into powder. This supplement is vegan and vegetarian-friendly.
Aged garlic extract
A form of supplement that is raw and kept in ethanol for up to 20 months. Aged garlic extract is known to reduce blood pressure and have powerful antioxidants.
Garlic oil macerate
This type of supplement is ground garlic stored in sunflower oil and sesame oil. The process involves garlic being crushed, exposed to air for half an hour, and then macerated for 7-8 days.
Steam distilled garlic oil
This type of garlic contains 1% sulfur compounds for every 99 percent of vegetable oil. These are four common types of garlic supplements, but now you know this, you shouldn't just go out there and buy them based on this knowledge. Instead, when looking for a garlic supplement, you should always review the quality first. Food supplements and natural supplements are not reviewed or regulated by the FDA. It's important to know that you may discover ingredients that have not been stated on the packaging. When looking at supplements, you should look for a USP seal; however, garlic supplements don't include a USP. Therefore, it's best to pick them based on their brand, and you should always read reviews to make a good choice. Also, consider price; the best garlic supplements aren't always the most expensive ones. So, try to keep within your price range.
Best food sources
Garlic can be used as a seasoning and added to many foods; certain foods you can consume that have garlic are chutneys, pasta, soups, butter, oils, and sauces. You can even make meals yourself and add crushed garlic, minced garlic, cloves, and garlic flakes.
Garlic is a medicinal vegetable, and whether you're eating it raw or in supplement form, there are a lot of benefits which are:
- Little calories and is highly nutritious: Even though garlic is low in calories, it contains lots of nutrients. Around 3 grams, i.e., one clove of garlic contains 3 % of manganese, Vitamin B6 2%, Vitamin C 1%, and Selenium 1% of your daily intake. In addition to this, it also contains copper, potassium, phosphorus, iron, and vitamin B. Plus it has around 4.5 calories and has 0.2 grams of protein.
- It could potentially improve bone health: When it comes to research on bone health, there's still a lot pending for humans. However, there had been rodent studies that have shown garlic has helped female rodents increase their estrogen levels which might help bone health. Similarly, there has been researched indicating garlic can increase estrogen levels in menopausal women.
- May help improve athletic performance: Garlic has been used since the Greeks. Back then, Olympians would use it to enhance their performance. There have been studies conducted for people who have consumed garlic which has shown better heart rate after a 6-week period and increased exercise capacity.
- It could help prevent Alzheimer’s and dementia: Garlic has antioxidants that protect against free radicals and oxidative damage. The antioxidants help reduce dangerous brain diseases.
- Fight off common cold and flu: If you eat raw garlic, it might help fight off your cold and potential infections. Often, it's recommended to eat two raw garlic cloves on an empty stomach.
The side effects of garlic supplements are:
- Stuffy nose;
- Skin swelling;
- Gastrointestinal upset.
These are just a few side affects you may experience when taking garlic supplements; if they persist and seem severe, consult advice from your local doctor.
Precautions and warnings
If you're pregnant or breastfeeding, you should be cautious if taking supplements; always consult your doctor first. Moreover, if you have a bleeding disorder, garlic supplements may increase the likelihood of you bleeding. Garlic might also keep you bleeding for longer than normal if you've undergone surgery and lower your blood sugar levels. Ideally, you should stop taking garlic supplements 2 weeks before you having surgery.
How long should I take it?
The duration you take garlic can vary based on your age, dosage, and the reason why you're taking it. To know how long you should have it for, speak to a doctor or dietician first.
Interaction with other medicines
Garlic supplements may interact with the following medicines:
- HIV/AID medications: Garlic supplements can speed up the way your body breaks down this medication, causing the effectiveness to decrease.
- Isoniazid: Garlic might limit how much isoniazid you absorb. Other medications to be cautious of that may cause a reaction are a warfarin, anticoagulant/antiplatelet drugs, liver medications, and birth control pills. If you're on any medications and thinking about taking a garlic supplement, always speak to a doctor first about potential interactions.
Garlic supplements are full of benefits and are an easy way to get your daily intake. You have four different choices of consuming garlic supplements through dehydrated and powdered capsules, garlic extract, macerate, and steam-distilled garlic oil. Garlic supplements can lower your cholesterol, blood pressure, aiding memory, lowering the risk of Alzheimer's, dementia and many more benefits. However, they can produce a wide range of side effects and interact with some medications, but that's not definite.
What are the best garlic supplements to take?
The best garlic supplements to take can be completely subjective and depend on your brand preference. However, one common garlic supplement that many recommend is Kyolic Aged Garlic Extract, which seems to be the best all-rounder.
What is the best garlic supplement for high blood pressure?
It's believed that garlic extract or stream distilled garlic oil is believed to be the best for high blood pressure. The dosages range between 12.3-4000mg a day and can be taken up to 2-24 weeks at a time, based on the form you take.
What type of garlic supplement is best?
Out of popular opinion, the best garlic supplement is often the steam distilled garlic oil. It's believed that it helps fight stress and fatigue. Similarly, you can apply it to the hair and the skin; it's a multipurpose supplement.
How to choose the best garlic supplement?
When choosing the best garlic supplement, you should consider your budget and stick to it. Similarly, it's helpful to look at reviews from other uses and see if it's impacted them and decide from that. You should also conduct thorough research about the ingredients in each supplement.
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