Garlic Freshly Crushed For A Healthy Heart

For centuries, people have been partaking in garlic because they sensed that it was in some way good for them to do so, now modern science is finally catching up and telling us why this “Stinking Rose” is so good for us after all.

While much of the focus has been on the compound allicin, which gives garlic its distinctive pungency and taste some scientists are finding out that this herb is more than just a one trick pony. While allicin does seem to be a potent antioxidant that can help us fight off those nasty cancer causing free radicals, there are other compounds within garlic that also contribute to a healthy heart.

Hydrogen Sulfide

Scientists have lately been looking into the properties of hydrogen sulfide, a substance that forms after garlic is crushed or cut. While probably known more for the stuff that gives rotten eggs their rotten egg smell, Hydrogen sulfide also acts a chemical messenger in the body. It causes blood vessels to relax thus allowing blood to flow more freely through the blood vessels. 

According to the study, published in the August 12 issue of the Journal of Agricultural and Food chemistry, the garlic given to lab rats helped reduce damage from the lack of oxygen to the heart.  Good flowing blood is essential to a healthy heart and can be the difference between lie and death if a heart attack happens.

The catch

The study was conducted using both processed garlic and raw crushed garlic. According to  Dr. Dipak K. Das who led the study, while both  helped reduce damage from the lack of oxygen, the rats from the fresh garlic group recovered more quickly from simulated heart attacks and had better blood flow through the aorta and increased pressure in the left ventricle. 

This is probably because garlic loses most of its ability to produce hydrogen sulfide when it is cooked or otherwise processed. By crushing and eating garlic raw, you increase the chances of ingesting the compound and thereby helping the blood flow through your heart.

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