Garlic can do wonders for your pasta or bread. But what about its health benefits? For example, Is garlic good for your heart? Keep reading to learn some interesting, science-backed facts about garlic.
Is Garlic Good for Your Heart?
Humans have been using garlic for thousands of years, and for good reason. In addition to punching up any dish, garlic also offers many interesting health benefits.
For example, scientific studies have found that garlic has antibiotic properties and is effective against many bacteria, fungi, and viruses.
Scientists have also confirmed that garlic contributes to heart health in at least two ways, as we’ll see below.
How Garlic Helps Improve Heart Health
First off, according to some studies, “Garlic supplements have shown effectiveness in reducing blood pressure in hypertensive patients, similarly to first-line standard anti-hypertensive Medications.”
It is believed that the compound responsible for the positive effect of garlic on blood pressure is allicin, which also plays an important role in garlic’s antimicrobial properties.
Another way garlic contributes to vascular health is by reducing the levels of LDL (low-density lipoprotein) cholesterol, more commonly known as “bad” cholesterol.
LDL cholesterol tends to accumulate on the walls of the blood vessels, blocking the flow of blood to the heart and other organs.
While garlic has a positive short-term impact on bad cholesterol levels, scientists also warn that further studies are necessary to confirm that the effects of garlic on LDL cholesterol can last beyond the short term.
Other Nutrients in Garlic
Additionally, garlic is also a good source of other nutrients. An ounce (28 g) of garlic contains 8.7 mg of vitamin C (15% of DV), 0.3 mg of vitamin B6 (17% of DV), 0.5 mg of manganese (23% of DV), 4.0 mcg of selenium (6% of DV) and 0.1 mg of copper (4% of DV), among others.
So now you know it: garlic is more than one of the basic ingredients of great pasta; it also contributes to heart health and packs many important nutrients.
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