Garlic – friend or foe?

garlic benefits on health

I know, nobody heard of garlic being a foe, what am I talking about? Yet, it’s true.

Garlic is a herb. We all use it in in the kitchen, and all heard that it is used also as a remedy for many conditions. It can be taken as supplement in tablets, so that we can take them without having to carry a garlic bulb in our pockets, and smell like…. well, bad. Yet, the odorless capsules are not that efficient, because the power of garlic relies exactly in this allicin, which gives it the odor. A clove of fresh garlic has approximately 4 grams and contains 1% allicin. An aged one contains only 0.03% allicin. Garlic prevents and treats a wide range of diseases and conditions.
And, according to our folk stories, makes the vampires stay away!!

How does it work?

Garlic produces a substance we called allicin. It is responsible for the smell and also for its most benefits. Here are some of them:

health with garlic

So, why foe?

Because not anybody can take garlic. If we are perfectly healthy, and know this for sure, and we don’t take any kind of medicines or supplements, we are safe. Otherwise, please read the following.

1. If you take contraceptive pills, garlic may interact with them and decrease their efficiency.  Some contraceptive pills contain estrogen. Garlic will increase the breakdown of estrogen and interfere in the pills’ effectiveness. If you take birth control pills and also have garlic as a supplement in treating high blood pressure, a cold, flue or whatever, then use condoms, because a little vampire can pay you a visit, actually helped by garlic! 🙂

2. Large doses of garlic can cause different side effects:  Burning sensations in the mouth or stomach, heartburn, gas, nausea, vomiting, body odor, and diarrhea. Raw garlic will be more powerful and so will be the side effects. Pregnant woman and children should not have large doses of garlic, to prevent any possible complications.

3. Increases the risk of bleeding. There have been reported bleeding after surgery in people who have taken garlic. If you are undergoing surgery, then stop taking garlic two weeks prior to the surgery, as garlic may prolong bleeding. Especially if it is fresh garlic. Also if you suffer from divers bleeding disorders.

4. Irritate the gastrointestinal tract. I guess after eating a little more garlic we have all felt that burning sensation in our stomachs. Chinese medicine tells us to not eat raw fresh garlic. They say it must undergo a little cooking, not much but enough to temper it down.  

5. Some allergic reactions are possible, including asthma (at people working with garlic). 

6. Here is a list of medicines that should not be associated with garlic:
– Isoniazid (Nydrazid, INH)
– Medications used for HIV/AIDS (Non-Nucleoside Reverse Transcriptase Inhibitors (NNRTIs))
– Saquinavir (Fortovase, Invirase)
– Cyclosporine (Neoral, Sandimmune)
– Medications changed by the liver (Cytochrome P450 2E1 (CYP2E1) substrates and Cytochrome P450 3A4 (CYP3A4) substrates) 
– Medications that slow blood clotting (Anticoagulant / Antiplatelet drugs);
– Warfarin (Coumadin)

Nevertheless, if you are not in a condition mentioned above, then use garlic and don’t forget to thank it for doing such a great job in restoring your health.

 

 

references:
http://www.webmd.com/;
http://www.healthline.com/
garlic picture source SOMMAI, via freedigitalphotos.net;

Garlic – friend or foe? was last modified: April 27th, 2015 by Laura

2 Responses

  1. Nieve says

    Hi, Laura. It is a great post about garlic. I never know the garlic cannot be taken together with those medicines. Thanks a lot! 🙂

    • Laura says

      In nature, everything comes double-edged. We must be careful with them all, especially if we are not in perfect health and imbalance our body with synthetic substances. Not to become paranoid, of course, but to know what we are doing to ourselves.

      Laura

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