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Garlic for Health

Garlic is a pantry staple.  However, many people don’t realise just how powerful this widely used kitchen herb is for health.  Daily use can support the body in a multitude of ways. As Hippocrates said, "let food be thy medicine, and medicine be thy food."

Garlic is effective against viruses, bacteria and parasites. Studies have shown that garlic increases the natural killer cells of the immune system, can reduce the severity of colds and flu, and reduces inflammatory markers in the immune system.

One large study over 12-weeks found that a daily garlic supplement reduced the number of colds by 63% compared to a placebo. The average length of cold symptoms was also reduced by 70%, from 5 days in the placebo group to just 1.5 days in the garlic group. Another study found that it reduced the number of days’ sick with cold or flu by 61%.


A review of studies published in the journal Neurological Research found that garlic could be beneficial for high blood pressure, diabetes, heart disease, and potentially even reduce the risk of heart attack and stroke.  It can also help lower total and LDL cholesterol,

While many garlic studies have used aged garlic, raw garlic is cheap, effective and you can buy locally or NZ grown.  1-2 cloves per day can be beneficial.  You can take them whole or crush them up in food.  Add to bread you are baking, mince and add to vegetables as they are cooking, roast at add to salads. 

If you aren’t such a fan of the garlic taste, you can try garlic capsules instead. 

If you eat garlic, follow up with apple, mint and parsley to help reduce or eliminate ‘garlic’ odour. 

 If you aren’t already a garlic lover, we suggest you start slowly and build up.  Overdoing it can cause discomfort, including upset stomach, bloating, diarrhoea, bad breath and body odour.


 Note: If you take blood thinners, a garlic supplement can increase the medication’s effect, making it even harder for your blood to clot.  Please check with your Dr if garlic is suitable for you. 


Disclaimer: The information presented here has been written to the best of our knowledge. However, the information is not intended to be comprehensive or to provide medical advice to you or your family. While all care has been taken to ensure the accuracy of the information, no responsibility or liability is accepted.  All health ailments, conditions or concerns should be treated by a qualified health professional.