National Garlic Day
It’s National Garlic Day! While we love fresh breath here at Altman Dental, we LOVE garlic breath too! Garlic is so powerful as an anti-inflammatory. It helps with circulation of the blood. Think about its strength. When you a lot, you will sweat it out through your pores, and you can smell it in the shower! This is the strength and power of this medicinal food. If you consume a lot, it also will help keep mosquitoes away, as they don’t like the scent. This may be where the myth that garlic keeps vampires away came from. So indulge in one of nature’s wondrous herbs!
Health Benefits of Garlic:
- Cardiovascular: Our red blood cells can take sulfur-containing molecules in garlic (called polysulfides) and use them to produce H2S. This H2S in turn can help our blood vessels expand and keep our blood pressure in check. Garlic is able to lower our blood triglycerides and total cholesterol. Garlic is a very good source of vitamin C, the body’s primary antioxidant defender in all aqueous (water-soluble) areas, such as the bloodstream, where it protects LDL cholesterol from oxidation. Since it is the oxidized form of LDL cholesterol that initiates damage to blood vessel walls, reducing levels of oxidizing free radicals in the bloodstream can have a profound effect on preventing cardiovascular disease. Interestingly, some processed garlic extracts cannot be used by our red blood cells in the same way and do not seem to provide the same level of cardiovascular protection that is provided by garlic in food form (Source). So eat it and enjoy it!
- Antimicrobial-garlic has been found to decrease harmful bacteria, and is being looked at for treatment of ulcers caused by H. pylori
- Helps to prevent several forms of cancer
- *If you are a person diagnosed with lupus, we recommend a consult with your healthcare provider to decide about inclusion or avoidance of garlic in your meal plan. Some physicians recommend the avoidance of garlic with patients who have lupus.
Ways to eat garlic:
- It’s best to smash garlic to help to release it’s natural oils before chopping. It is also best to eat garlic raw, or minimally cooked. The longer it is cooked (like any food), the more of its beneficial properties are lost.
- Add to raw sauces and create a healthy version of pesto-oil and dairy free! For a nut free pesto version-click here!
- Add to dips like hummus!
- Add to any of your cooked soups, sauces, and stir-frys-added in towards the end of the cooking process to maximize nutrition
- Use in freshly made dressings
- If roasting-don’t take garlic over 250F to maintain health benefits. Longer and lower temp is better
Eat that garlic (and then you might want to brush your teeth 🙂