29 Amazing Health And Beauty Benefits of Garlic

Garlic closely relates to the onion and is a vegetable that belongs to Allium Genus. It is native to Central Asia and Iran but is now cultivated in many regions of the world.  Due to the abundance of essential nutrients like vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, phytonutrients, polyphenols, and dietary fibers, etc, garlic provides several health and beauty benefits.

Nutrition Chart of Garlic

Nutrition Chart of Garlic

Source-USDA

Health Benefits of Garlic

Health And Beauty Benefits of Garlic

Source-Pixabay.com

Some of the major health benefits of garlic are as follows.

(1) Helps In Managing Diabetes

Garlic is beneficial for people with diabetes and for those who are at risk of developing diabetes.

It doesn’t have carbohydrates and doesn’t cause a sudden spike in blood sugar level, and thus helps in managing diabetes.

The dietary fibers in the garlic slow down the rate at which sugar gets absorbed by the bloodstream and helps in controlling blood sugar levels. 

Avoid overconsumption of garlic as otherwise, it may drop the blood sugar to an abnormally low level giving rise to hypoglycemia with symptoms like shakiness, dizziness, excessive sweating, excessive hunger, fast heartbeat, confusion, and irritability or moodiness.

If you are on diabetic medication, consult your doctor before adding garlic to your diet to avoid the risk of food-drug intolerance.

(2) Manages Cholesterol Level

Dietary fibers in garlic reduce LDL cholesterol in the body and prevent the accumulation of plaque and fat deposits in the arteries.

This minimizes the risk of atherosclerosis, a condition that leads to hardening and narrowing of the arteries due to the accumulation of plaque and fat deposits in the arterial walls, and is a leading cause of several cardiovascular problems like heart attack, heart stroke, and coronary artery disease.

As per a 1991 study published in “Journal of Postgraduate Medicine”, individuals who consume a minimum of ten grams of garlic per day for at least two months had lower LDL cholesterol in comparison to those who didn’t. 

(3) Controls High Blood Pressure

Hypertension or high blood pressure is a silent killer that affects millions of people around the world and gives rise to various health problems like severe headaches, nose bleed, chest pain, fatigue, irregular heartbeat, difficulty in breathing, vision problems, and blood in urine, etc.

Potassium present in the garlic is a natural vasodilator that relaxes our blood vessels, improves blood circulation, and thus provides relief from high blood pressure or hypertension.

Zinc and magnesium in garlic also aid in regulating high blood pressure.

“Allicin” present in the garlic relaxes blood vessels and reduces platelet aggregation to fight thrombosis (blood clot).

Eat garlic in moderation as over-intake of potassium may lower the blood pressure to an abnormally low level and may give rise to hypotension with symptoms such as dizziness, fainting, nausea, dehydration, lack of concentration, blurred vision, and pale skin, etc.

If you are already on blood pressure medication, then consume garlic after having a word with your doctor to avoid the risk of food-drug intolerance.

(4) Promotes Cardiovascular Health

Garlic improves our cardiovascular health and is good for the heart.

Antioxidants like vitamin C, vitamin A and other antioxidantal compounds like phytonutrients and polyphenols, etc in garlic protect our cardiovascular system from free radical damage and improves its efficiency.

Dietary fibers in garlic reduce LDL cholesterol and thus minimizes the risk of atherosclerosis which is a leading cause of several cardiovascular problems.

“Ajoene”, a sulfur compound present in the garlic prevents blood clots, blockage of arteries and blood vessels, and minimizes the risk of atherosclerosis.

It also contains potassium that relaxes our blood vessels and controls hypertension or high blood pressure which is a major cause of several cardiovascular and other health problems.

Other nutrients like zinc, iron, magnesium, manganese, and copper, etc in garlic also contribute to our cardiovascular health.

(5) Enhances Ocular Health

The rich nutritious profile of garlic aids in maintaining our ocular health.

Vitamin C, vitamin A and other antioxidantal compounds like phytonutrients, polyphenols, and flavonoids, etc in garlic protects our eyes from free radical damage and thus minimizes the risk of age-related macular degeneration, cataract, and glaucoma, etc.

vitamin A is an essential mineral for the eyes as it improves vision prevents eye dryness and minimizes the risk of night-blindness.

Other nutrients like selenium, zinc, quercetin, and potassium, etc also play a significant role in keeping our eyes healthy.

(6) Improves Digestive Health

Garlic is good for the stomach and improves our digestive health.

Antioxidants like vitamin C, vitamin A and antioxidantal compounds like phytonutrients, polyphenols, and flavonoids, etc in garlic protect our digestive system from free radical damage and minimizes the risk of colon cancer, abdominal cancer, pancreatic cancer, intestinal cancer, and stomach cancer, etc.

The laxative properties of dietary fibers in garlic improve bowel movement, aids in stool elimination, and thus relieve constipation and other gastrointestinal issues like abdominal pain, irritable bowel syndrome, gas, bloating and flatulence, etc. 

Other nutrients like zinc, iron, magnesium, and folate, etc also improves our digestive health.

(7) Strengthens Immunity

The immune system is the defense mechanism of our body that aids in the prevention and treatment of various microbial infections, diseases, and as well as injuries, and wounds. 

Antioxidants like vitamin C, vitamin A, vitamin E, and other antioxidantal compounds like phytonutrients, polyphenols, and flavonoids, etc in garlic protect our immune cells or the white blood cells from free radicals damage and thus strengthens our immune system.

Vitamin C enhances the production of white blood cells, and further strengthens our immunity.

With stronger immunity, our risk of getting a cough, cold, fever, and flu diminishes significantly.

Other nutrients like zinc, potassium, magnesium, iron, and folate, etc in garlic also contribute to better immune health.

Vitamin C, an anti-inflammatory compound in the garlic reduces lung inflammation and improves respiratory health.

As per anecdotal evidence, chewing 2-3 garlic cloves can reduce the symptoms of cough and cold, and also aids in treating them. 

(8) Protection Against Cancer(s)

Antioxidants like vitamin C, vitamin E, and other antioxidantal compounds like phytonutrients, polyphenols, and flavonoids, etc in garlic protect our cells and tissues from free radical damage and minimizes the risk of several cancers like colon cancer, abdominal cancer, lung cancer, pancreatic cancer, stomach cancer, breast cancer, and prostate cancer, etc.

Free radicals are the unstabilized ions that stabilize by stealing electrons from the neighboring molecules, and doing so causes oxidative damage to them.

(9) Provides Anti-Inflammatory Benefits

Anti-inflammatory compounds like vitamin C and “Allicin” present in the garlic provide relief from pain and inflammation caused by inflammatory diseases like arthritis, rheumatism, rheumatoid, gouts, asthma and bronchial asthma, etc.

These compounds minimize the risk of lung inflammation and improve our respiratory health.

 (10) Promotes Weight Loss

The low calorific value of garlic makes it an excellent food for individuals who are on a weight loss journey and would like to get rid of some extra pounds.

Because of its low calorific value, garlic is beneficial for individuals who would like to get rid of some extra pounds.

On average, a single garlic clove weighing around 3 grams provides 4.5 calories of energy.

This may look high on a calorie per gram basis, but garlic clove is mainly used as a herb/spice to enhance the flavor of the dish.

Dietary fibers in garlic provide stomach satiety, controls our urge to eat again and again, and thus controls overeating which is a prime cause of obesity.

(11) Improves Neurological Health

Garlic is good for the brain and improves our neurological health.

Antioxidants like vitamin C, vitamin E, and other antioxidantal compounds like phytonutrients, polyphenols, and flavonoids, etc in the garlic protects our brain cells or the neurons from free radical damage, and thus minimizes the risk of various neurodegenerative diseases like Parkinson’s disease, Alzheimer’s disease, amnesia, and dementia, etc. 

Other nutrients like iron, potassium, zinc, iron, and magnesium, etc in the garlic also contribute to neurological health as they provide several cognitive benefits like a sharper memory, better focus, improved concentration,  and reduced mental confusion, etc. 

(12) Provides Detoxifying Benefits

Because of their detoxifying properties, dietary fibers in garlic eliminate toxins, pollutants, impurities, and other unwanted substances from our bodies.

Sulur compounds like ajoene and allicin present in the garlic remove heavy metals like lead and cadmium from our body and prevent these toxins from damaging our health.

As per a four-week study conducted in a car battery plant, it was found that workers who consumed garlic regularly had a 19 percent lower level of lead in their blood in comparison to those who didn’t.  It also reduces clinical signs of toxicity like headaches and high blood pressure.

When it comes to treating lead poisoning, garlic cloves are a safer and better alternative to D-Penicillamine.

(13) Strengthens Bones And Teeth

Garlic strengthens our bones and teeth due to the presence of bone-strengthening minerals like calcium, potassium, and magnesium, etc in it.

Calcium is a vital mineral for the growth and development of the bones, and lack of this mineral may increase the risk of bone disorders like osteoporosis.

Potassium in garlic neutralizes acid load, reduces loss of calcium from the bones, and thus improves bone density.

Magnesium also improves bone density and thus contributes to better bone health.

Garlic also contains manganese that increases calcium absorption and improves the bone mineral density of the spinal column. 

Garlic increases estrogen levels in women. Estrogen enhances the activity of osteoblasts ( cells that form bones) and thus improves bone health. 

Other nutrients like zinc, phosphorus, and folate, etc also aid in making our bones healthier.

(14) Treats Earache

The anti-microbial properties of garlic help in treating earaches.

For treating earache, squeeze few freshly cut garlic cloves and add olive oil to it. Leave the mixture at room temperature for a couple of days. The oil so prepared aids in treating earaches. It is better to prepare fresh oil after every few days as this oil can’t be saved indefinitely.

(15) Aids In Treating Wounds 

Garlic helps in treating wounds and injuries, and its anti-microbial properties minimize the risk of infections.

For treating wounds, add few drops of water to crushed raw garlic cloves to form a fine paste. Apply it to the affected area for quick healing of the wounds.

Anti-inflammatory compounds like vitamin C and Allicin in the garlic minimize pain and inflammation caused by the injury or wound.

(16) Effective Against Asthma

Garlic improves our respiratory health and minimizes the risk of respiratory disorders like asthma and bronchial asthma.

Antioxidants like vitamin C, vitamin A and other compounds like phytonutrients, polyphenols, and flavonoids, etc in garlic protect our respiratory system from free radical damage and minimizes the risk of lung cancer.

Anti-inflammatory compounds like vitamin C and allicin in garlic protect our respiratory system from pain and inflammation and minimizes the risk of asthma, bronchial asthma, and lung inflammation. It also minimizes lung inflammation.

Other nutrients like potassium, zinc, magnesium, and manganese, etc in garlic also improve our respiratory health.

To fight against asthma, add 3 boiled garlic cloves to a glass of warm milk, and drink it at bedtime. Regular use will minimize asthmatic symptoms like shortness of breath, wheezing, chest pain or tightness, and coughing, etc.

(17) Increases Sexual Stamina

Because of its aphrodisiac properties, garlic increases libido and improves sexual health.

Antioxidants like vitamin C, vitamin E, and other antioxidantal compounds like phytonutrients and polyphenols, etc in garlic protect the male sex hormones or the sperms from free radical damage and improves their efficiency.

Other nutrients like zinc, iron, potassium, magnesium and B vitamins, etc in the garlic also contribute to better sexual health.

Iron and potassium in the garlic improves blood circulation and make erections better. 

Those who over-indulge in sexual activities can also benefit from garlic as it minimizes nervous fatigue. 

(18) Improves Athletic Performance

Despite being low in calories, garlic can enhance the athletic performance of a person because of its rich nutritious profile.

Antioxidants like vitamin C, vitamin E, and other antioxidantal compounds like phytonutrients and polyphenols, etc protect our cells from free radical damage and increases their efficiency.

Iron and potassium in the garlic improves blood circulation and ensures nourishment to every cell and tissue of the body.

Dietary fibers in it improve our digestive health, promotes detoxification, and reduces LDL cholesterol. This improves our cardiovascular health. 

All these factors combined aids in enhancing the athletic performance of individuals who consume garlic cloves regularly. 

Beauty Benefits Of Garlic For Skin

Following are the major beauty benefits of garlic for skin

(1) Keeps Premature Ageing At Bay

Antioxidants like vitamin C, vitamin A and other antioxidantal compounds like phytonutrients, polyphenols, and flavonoids, etc in garlic protects our skin cells from the free radical damage, and keep various signs of premature aging like fine lines, wrinkles, age spots, dark spots, and skin blemishes, etc at bay.

Free radicals are the unstabilized ions that stabilize by stealing electrons from the neighboring molecules, and in doing so they cause oxidative damage to them.

Vitamin C and sulfur in the garlic enhance the production of collagen, an amino acid that maintains skin elasticity and prevents wrinkles and saggy skin.

(2) Aids In Treating Acne And Pimples

Acne is a common skin problem that affects millions of people around the world and is mainly caused by the accumulation of toxins, pollutants, dirt, impurities, and other unwanted substance within the skin pores.

Garlic helps in the prevention and treatment of skin problems like acne and pimples.

The dietary fibers in garlic eliminate toxins, pollutants, and other impurities from our system.

When there are fewer toxins, they are less likely to accumulate in skin pores, and thus minimizes the risk of acne and pimples.

Dietary fibers also control the secretion of excess oil from skin glands and prevent acne from worsening.

Not just consumption but topical application of garlic is equally beneficial for treating acne. 

Some of the ways, garlic can be used for acne treatment are as follows.

  1. To fight off acne and to reduce pain and swelling associated with acne, take a freshly cut garlic clove pod and gently apply it to the affected area. Wait for 5-10 minutes, and then wash off with water. 
  2. Mix equal proportion of fresh garlic juice and white vinegar, and gently apply it to the affected area. This will maintain the pH level of the skin and will also fight off acne and infections.
  3. Crush some freshly peeled garlic cloves to form a paste. Mix half a tablespoon of honey and two tablespoons of yogurt to it. Use this paste as a face mask to get rid of acne, pimples, and other skin problems. Crushed garlic cloves can be substituted with garlic oil (2-3 drops) or garlic powder ( half tablespoon). The honey and the yogurt added to the mixture soothes our skin and minimizes the stingy and burning sensation caused by the garlic. 
  4. Add 4-5 freshly peeled crushed garlic cloves to 250 ml of boiling water. Stop boiling the water when the garlic cloves submerge in the water.  Allow the water to cool and come to a lukewarm level. Apply this water to the affected area of the skin. Ensure that water is neither too hot ( as it will burn your skin) nor too cold( as it won’t be effective).

(3) Remove Blackhead And Whitehead

Garlic helps in the removal of blackheads and whiteheads.

For this, mix 2-3 crushed garlic cloves, 1 tablespoon of oatmeal, 1-2 drops of tea tree oil, ½ teaspoon of lemon juice, and some honey to form a fine paste. Spread a thin layer of this paste on a clean face, and let it dry for 4-5 minutes. Wash off with water.

Using this face mask thrice a week will not only minimize blackheads and whiteheads but will make your face soft and supple.

(4) Minimize Enlarged  Skin Pores

The astringent properties of garlic tighten skin pores and minimize enlarged skin pores.

Dietary fibers and sulfur compounds in the garlic eliminates toxins, pollutants, and other unwanted substances from our system prevents these toxins from getting clogged up in the skin pores, and thus minimizes the risk of skin problems like acne and pimples. 

Nutrients like vitamins and minerals in garlic nourish our skin and keep it healthy.

To reduce enlarged skin pores, mash half a tomato and 3-4 garlic pods together to form a paste. Spread a thin layer of this paste on your face, and after 20 minutes wash off with lukewarm water.

Regular use will minimize enlarged skin pores, and make your skin soft, supple, and radiant.

(5) Reduces Stretch Marks

Vitamin C and allicin present in the garlic enhances the production of collagen, an amino acid that maintains skin elasticity and minimizes wrinkles, saggy skin, and stretch marks.

To minimize stretch marks, add some freshly squeezed garlic juice to almond oil and heat it (Don’t boil). Once it comes to room temperature, massage the oil on the stretch marks. Regular use will vanish the stretch marks in few weeks.

You may substitute garlic juice with garlic oil ( half a teaspoon).

(6) Good For Nails

The anti-microbial properties of garlic minimize the risk of cuticle infections and keep our nails healthy. 

Gently rubbing crushed garlic cloves on the nails reduce the yellowness of the nails. Repeat thrice a week for a couple of weeks to witness the result.

Alternatively, you can also add few drops of garlic oil or garlic juice to your regular cuticle cream or lotion to minimize the yellowness of nails.

(7) Prevents Psoriasis Outbreak

Garlic contains anti-inflammatory compounds like vitamin C and allicin that aids in treating skin problems like psoriasis etc. It also minimizes the pain and inflammation associated with this condition. 

For treating psoriasis, gently rub garlic oil on the affected area using a cotton ball. Regular use will minimize painful psoriasis outbreaks and will make your skin soft and rash-free.

Remember to do the patch test to ensure that you are not allergic to garlic oil.

 If you experience any discomfort, discontinue the use and consult your dermatologist.

(8) Aids In Treating Athlete’s Foot

Garlic aids in treating an athlete’s foot because of its anti-fungal properties.

For treating an athlete’s foot, add few crushed garlic cloves in a large bowl or bucket of warm water, and soak your feet in it.

Beauty Benefits Of Garlic For Hair

Some major beauty benefits of garlic for hair and scalp are as follows.

(1) Promotes Hair Growth

Garlic promotes hair growth because of its rich nutritious profile.

Essential nutrients like vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants, etc in garlic nourish our hair follicles and scalp and keep them healthy.

Antioxidants like vitamin C, vitamin A and other relevant compounds like phytonutrients and polyphenols protect our hair follicles and scalp from free radical damage and improves scalp health. 

Other nutrients like zinc, iron, folate, and potassium in garlic improve blood circulation in the scalp, nourishes our hair follicles and scalp, and promote the growth of new hair follicles. 

(2) Reduces Hair Loss

Garlic contains several essential nutrients like vitamins, minerals, antioxidants and phytonutrients, etc that nourish and strengthens our hair follicles.

With stronger hair follicles, the risk of hair loss diminishes automatically.

Sulfur compounds like “Allicin” play a significant role in reducing hair loss.

It also contains several antioxidants and antioxidantal compounds that protect our hair follicles from free radical damage.

Other nutrients like zinc, iron, potassium, B vitamins, and folate, etc also contribute to scalp health and minimizes the risk of hair fall. 

Gently rubbing some freshly cut garlic clove slices on the scalp improves blood circulation in the scalp, promotes hair growth, and minimizes hair loss. 

Another method of treating hair loss is to soak some garlic cloves in olive oil for at least one week and use this oil to massage your hair and scalp.

(3) Helps In Dandruff Treatment

Dandruff is a common scalp problem that affects millions of people around the world and is mainly caused by poor scalp health.

Garlic helps in treating dandruff and is a popular ingredient in many anti-dandruff products.

Antioxidants like vitamin C and other relevant compounds like phytonutrients, polyphenols, and flavonoids, etc in the garlic protect our hair follicles and scalp from free radical damage and make them healthy.

Vitamins and minerals in the garlic nourish our hair follicles and scalp, minimize the risk of scalp problems like dandruff, etc.

Because of its sulfur content and antimicrobial properties, garlic prevents scalp infection, treats dandruff, and reduces the severity of dandruff. 

(4) Prevents Premature Greying Of Hair

Antioxidants like vitamin C, vitamin A and other antioxidantal compounds like phytonutrients, polyphenols, and flavonoids, etc in the garlic protect our hair follicles and scalp from free radical damage, and thus minimizes the risk of premature greying of hair, split ends, hair fall, and dry hair, etc.

Free radicals are the unstabilized ions that stabilize by stealing electrons from the neighboring molecules, and in doing so they cause oxidative damage to them.

Both consuming and topical application of garlic helps in treating premature greying of hair.

For this, heat 3-4 garlic cloves, a pinch of black pepper powder, and some coconut oil together.  Once cooled, apply it to the wet hair and let it dry for 20 minutes. Wash off with water.

Disclaimer

Suggested Read   21 Amazing Health Benefits Of Bitter Gourd

This article provides general information about the topic, and should not be taken as medical advice or as an alternative to medical advice treatment or diagnosis. Always consult with your doctor before trying out any of the remedies/recipes suggested in the blog post. 

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