The Healing Power of Garlic

The Healing Power of Garlic
by Klaus Ferlow, HMH, HA

Growing up in Northern Germany “country style”, I quickly developed a lover for Mother Nature, especially for herbs, flowers, fruits and vegetables and wanted to become later a forest ranger. Our family used an almost unlimited amount of herbs in our diet inclusive herbal teas, as well as for healing illnesses. One of my favorite herbs was the “stinking rose”, garlic which we considered a wonder herb!

History of Garlic

The name “garlic” derived from the Anglo Saxon “leac” meaning a pot-herb and “gar”, a lance, after the shape of the stem and it belongs to the member of the lily family and is even referred to in the Bible! Garllic has played an important role in a large number of cultures through history probably originating in the Kirghiz region of central Asia, along the Russia-China border. Chinese writing dating back 3,000 years, Babylonian 4.500 years and Sanskrit 5.000 years to this ancient herb!

Many of the worlds oldest civilizations considered garlic to be one of the most important spices for good health and this amazing herb has been performing medicinal miracles throughout the world for thousands of years and Egyptians, Hebrews, Greeks, Romans, Native Americans, Babylonians, Traditional Chinese, Ayurveda (from India) and European used it in food, drinks and medicine.

As far as back as the first century BC, the Greek physician Diocorides stated that garlic clears the arteries and opens the mouth of the veins, he prescribed it for heart problems and Hippocrates recommend it for infections, wounds, cancer, leprosy, digestive problems and laxative, Alexander the Great also fed garlic to his soldiers to increase their strength, Pliny the Elder listed it in 61 remedies for ailments ranging from common cold to epilepsy, from leprosy to tape worm – a fact that modern science affirmed more than 2000 years later!

Tracing the history of civilization, it is very interesting to note that garlic was first a “tool of magic power” in the hands of the physician-priest or medicine man. Huge amount of garlic were consumed by the workers building the Great Pyramid at Giza, Egyptians fed the herb for healthy male slaves In ancient Greek, garlic crushed, boiled and in wine was used to prevent infection and speed the healing process.

Ancient Ayurvedic healers prescribed garlic for leprosy and treat cancer. Seventh-century English herbalist Nicholas Culpeter endorsed it “as the poor man's treacle, a remedy for all diseases and hurts.” If you want to learn more about the amazing history of garlic please check this link:

What are the health benefits of garlic?

The latin name “Allium” is derived from the Celtic worked for pungent, hot and burning, properties common to all the Allium species. “Sativum” means cultivated or planted, referring to the fact that garlic in no loner found in the wild. It is one of the earliest cultivated crops and continues to be extensivly grown for both medicinal and culinary purposes.

The garlic bulk is the part used medicinally. When intact it is odourless, however, crushing the cells brings the enzyme allianase into contact with the suphur-containing compound alliin, converting it to allicin which produces the characteristics garlic odor. Garlic has had more folklore and scientific research devoted to it than any other herb.

Garlic contains allicin, allyl disulfides, calcium, copper, essentials oils, germanium, iron, magnesium, manganese, phosphorus, pytoncides, potassium, selenium, sulfur, unsaturated aldehydes, zinc, vitamins A, B1, B2, and C.

In Gilroy, the garlic capital of the world garlic is planted on 14.000 acres within a 90-mile radius of the town. They celebrate each summer their annual Garlic Festival since 1979 and over 100,000 people attend, next year's 38th festival is scheduled July 29 - 31, 2016,,. At the festival everything is served with garlic: food, bread, beer, olives, wine, pasta, scampi, mushrooms, ice cream, dessert, salad dressings, butter, mayonnaise, seasonings.

Asians are pickling garlic in honey and the most famous garlic sauce in the world is Aioli from the region Provence, France. In the Balkans and Eastern Europe people are using garlic many times raw on a daily basis. An Italian favorite is Pesto, made by crushing together garlic and fresh basil, yielding an incredible pasta dressing complimented with pine nuts and pulverized, Romano or Parmesan cheese.

Uses for garlic are almost endless and it is excellent in tomato dishes, soups, sauces, butters, gravies, dips, salad dressing and salads, vegetables, meat, poultry and fish, stews, marinades, also available garlic powder, salt, chips, instant minced garlic, garlic juice, toasted whole grain garlic bread. A whole list of favorite garlic recipes you can find in the book “GARLIC – HEALING POWER” Bernard Jensen, DC, Ph.D. Clinical Nutritionist.

What are other health benefits of garlic?

Here is a long list of additional health benefits of garlic:

Acne, antiviral, anti-parasitic, anti-protozoa, AIDS, arthritis, arteriosclerosis, balancing insulin, bites, blood clots, boils, breast-feeding, cancer, candida albicans, calluses, cardiovascular, common cold, circulation, conjunctivitis, constipation, coughs, diabetes, diarrhea, dysentery, earache, eczema, elimination poisons in pets, environmental poison, eye infections, fatigue, fever, flu, food poisoning, free radicals, fungus, genital herpes, heart attacks, heavy metal, influenca, high cholesterol, poisoning, hemorrhoids, high blood pressure, hives, hypertension, immune-deficiency, infectious diseases, insect problems, lip, liver, mouth, natural antibiotic, pain, pimples, radiation, respiratory problems, smallpox,steroid abuse, stress, systemic candidiasis, throat, toothache, warts, worms, yeast vaginitis, virus.

Garlic oil is good for heart and colon, and it is effective in the treatment of arthritis, candidiasis, and circulation problems.

Goodby offensive garlic breath?

You love garlic but hate how it affects your breath? After your natural garlic dish, chew on a fresh sprig of parsley, mint, or caraway and/or fennel seeds, eat a banana or drink a large glass of water.

Dosage Regimens

Suggested dosages range from 3 – 30 g fresh garlic (1 – 8 cloves) daily. The German Commission E considers a daily dosage equivalent to 4g fresh garlic to be therapeutically effective. The British Herbal Compendium recommends 2 – 5 mg allicain, 2 – 5 mg garlic oil, 2 – 5 g of fresh air-dried garlic or 400 – 1200 mg of fully dried powder daily.

One of the best know garlic supplements with no odor is Kyolic, available in tablets, capsules, and oil extract forms.

Drug Interactions

A possible interaction with the blood thinner warfarin or if people take aspirin has been reported since garlic is a natural blood thinner besides ginkgo biloba. It has been suggested that garlic may potentiate the anti-thrombotic effect of ASA and may interfere with existing diabetic therapy. Also some people might be allergic to garlic.

Cautions – Contraindications

Natural garlic and supplements should be used with caution by pregnant and lactating women. In addition they should be avoided before undergoing surgical procedures due to possible pot-bleeding. Caution is also recommended after organ transplants because it has been reported that garlic enhances the activity of natural killer (NK) cells, which are largely responsible for tissue rejection.

Attacks of pemphigus, a relatively rare autoimmune disorder resulting in lesions of the mucous membranes and skin, may be induced by drugs which contain active thiol groups. This sulfur-containing group is found in garlic, thus, it is suggested that patients with this condition avoid garlic.

There have been a large number of scientific clinical trials and studies done about garlic in many years and the all came to the same conclusion that the incredible herb has healing power in so many ways and humans have benefited from it for centuries. If you don' try you never know!

Words of Wisdom
Garlic is one of the most valuable healing foods in nature's garden and I recommend it for a long and healthful life.
- Bernard Jensen, DC, PhD., Clinical Nutritionist

Jensen Bernard, GARLIC – Healing Powers, Bernard Jensen, 1992
Heinerman, John, The Healing Power of Garlic, Glober Communication corp., 1995
Castleman Michael, The Healing Herbs, Rodale Press, 1991
Tobyn Graeme, Culpeter Medicine, Element Book Ltd, 1997
Gursche Siegfried, Rona Zoltan, Encyclopedia of Natural Healing, Alive Publishing, 1997
Meredith Ted Jordan, The Complete book of Garlic, Timber Press, 2008
Ewards Natasha, Garlic: The Mighty Bulb, Firefly Books, 2012
Engeland Ron L. Growing Great Garlic, Filaree, 1991
Llau, Benjamin, Garlic For Health, Lotus Light Publications, 1998

About Klaus Ferlow
Klaus Ferlow, author, HMH, HA, innovator, lecturer, researcher, writer, founder of Ferlow Botanicals (1975) and NEEM RESEARCH, (2013) member of the Natural Health Federation, United Plant Savers, International Herb Association, Neem Foundation, Bombay (Mumbai), India, Health Action Network Society, Canadian Herbalist's Association of B.C., co-author of the book "7StepstoDentalhealth.' and author of the book "Neem - Nature's Healing Gift to Humanity".,,

This information is offered for its educational value only and should not be used in the diagnoses, treatment or prevention of disease, please contact your health care practitioner.

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