Many of us use garlic to enhance the flavor of our favorite plant-based recipes. That said, studies show that garlic can enhance your health in many ways. It is a member of the allium family and contains phytochemicals like allicin that can have anti-inflammatory, heart-healthy, and immune-supportive features. Therefore, you should not hesitate to add garlic to your favorite foods which contain many nutrients and chemicals that can synergistically interact with garlic in many beneficial ways. Add garlic in pesto, sauces, hummus, soups, pasta, stir-fries, etc. Shared below are some of the important benefits of adding garlic to plant-based foods.
Garlic Can Control Infection
Many health experts believe that chronic inflammation is one of the main catalysts in the case of several chronic diseases, which include diabetes, arthritis, heart diseases, and cancer. Garlic can help inhibit the activity of some of the inflammatory proteins and this was proved in a randomized controlled study. Seventy women with rheumatoid arthritis took part in the study and the group of women who took 1000 milligrams of garlic supplements regularly for 8 weeks had markedly lower levels of inflammatory markers, less fatigue and pain when compared to a placebo group.
Garlic Can Support Immune Function
Our zest for taking care of our immune system has increased a lot due to the COVID 19 pandemic, and as per the experts, garlic can support the function of our immune system. It makes a significant contribution to the defense mechanism of our body in a few ways. For instance, the allicin present in garlic has antibacterial properties. Many researchers also believe that garlic possesses antiviral characteristics that function by boosts the immune response.
Garlic Can Lower Blood Pressure
Adding garlic to your diet can stimulate the production of nitric oxide that can dilate blood vessels and inhibit the activity of the angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE). Studies show that ACE inhibitors can relax blood vessels, thereby supporting the healthy flow of blood. In a recent study, more than 550 people with hypertension were monitored and it was found that taking garlic supplements reduced systolic blood pressure by about 8 points and diastolic blood pressure by 5.5 points. This effect of garlic was similar to that of blood pressure medications.
In addition to the above health benefits, garlic has antioxidant properties that can reduce inflammation and fight free radical damage, which might result in diseases like cancer.