When a story was released about a woman placing a clove of garlic under her son’s pillow every night, it was met with mixed reaction. Those who didn’t bother to read the entire article assumed it was some form of witchcraft ritual to keep the evil spirits away during the night. Other ridiculed it as an ignorant attempt to make sure death wouldn’t visit her son while he slept.
In truth, there’s a logical explanation for the garlic under the pillow: it centers around maintaining good health.
The use of herbs and plants as medical healers goes way back to the ancient times. In particular, the Greek physician Hippocrates, often called the father of Western medicine, used to prescribe garlic to treat a variety of medical conditions.
Today, modern science seems to agree with the ancient Greek. Tests and studies have confirmed many of the health benefits of the pungent-smelling clove listed below:
Most of the health effects in garlic are caused by the sulfur compound allicin, which also gives the clove its distinctive odor. The allicin compound enters the body through the digestive tract where it is disseminated throughout the body via the bloodstream.
2. Garlic Is Highly Nutritious With Very Few Calories
Garlic is rich in Vitamin C, Vitamin B6 and Manganese while low in calories. It also contains trace amounts of various other nutrients. One ounce (28 grams) of garlic contains:
• Manganese: 23% of the RDA.
• Vitamin B6: 17% of the RDA.
• Vitamin C: 15% of the RDA.
• Selenium: 6% of the RDA.
3. Garlic Combats Sickness, Helps Prevent Colds
Studies show that garlic supplements are known to boost the function of the immune system and ward off colds.
One experiment found that the number of common colds in the study group was reduced by 63 percent for those who took a daily garlic supplement, and for those who did catch a cold, the average length of the ailment was reduced by nearly 70 percent.
This is the reason the mother places a clove of garlic under her son’s pillow each night: it’s her belief that inhaling the garlic fumes provides a more comfortable sleep while keeping her son healthy and free of colds.
4. The Active Compounds in Garlic Help Reduce Blood Pressure
Studies also show that high doses of garlic help improve blood pressure for those with known high blood pressure problems. In some instances, supplementation has been proven as effective as regular medications.
5. Garlic Improves Cholesterol Levels
Garlic can lower LDL cholesterol, a known contributor to heart disease. Garlic also combats high cholesterol levels, reducing total LDL cholesterol by an average of 12 percent…
6. Alzheimer’s Disease and Dementia
Garlic is known to contain antioxidants that protect against cell damage and aging. The antioxidants may also help to reduce the risk of Alzheimer’s disease and dementia.
7. Longer Life?
Garlic’s beneficial effects on common causes of chronic diseases are well proven. Knowing this, it’s only logical that the results of the positive impact on one’s health could translate into a longer life span.
8. Garlic Helps Detoxify Heavy Metals in the Body
High doses of garlic release sulfur compounds which help protect the organs against the harmful effects of heavy metal toxicity.
The benefits of consuming garlic, either eating it some form or inhaling the fumes or taken as a tablet supplement, are well proven and should not be subject to ridicule or skepticism.
Hanging garlic cloves around your neck to ward of vampires probably doesn’t work, but at least you’ll be warding off the common cold.