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Garlic: Vampire or Virus Slayer? How garlic benefits our health!

Garlic has been the subject of many a conversation over the centuries –

Some felt it was good for their love lives as, indeed, its reported properties as an aphrodisiac made it a popular choice for wedding nights in days of old. In Ancient Civilisations, it was said to be used to provide strength and courage for soldiers. Folklore puts it as the weapon of choice against vampires, and even describes how it was used to identify those of the vampire persuasion. Those who refused to eat the garlic were deemed to be vampires. Today, those who refuse to eat it probably don’t want their breath to smell!

So what is fact and what is fiction when it comes to the garlic bulb? What can we use it for? How can it benefit our health?

The facts about garlic:

  • has properties that provide health benefits.
  • contains sulphur compounds which cause the strong odour but also provide it with many healing properties and health benefits. Research has shown that the compound allyl disulphide reduces incidences of colorectal and stomach cancers. Intake of raw and cooked garlic appear to have a beneficial, anti-carcinogenic effect.
  • is good for the heart. Studies reveal that garlic can lower blood pressure, raise levels of ‘good’ (high-density lipoproteins in the blood), lower levels of ‘bad’/  unhealthy cholesterol and has cardiovascular health benefits.
  • acts to relieve a stuffy, blocked nose when eaten raw.
  • allicin is another sulphur compound containing powerful antiviral and antibacterial properties. Therefore, garlic gives us many health benefits especially during the winter months when cold and flu viruses are more prone to attack!


The health benefits, however, can alter depending on how it is prepared, and whether it is eaten raw or cooked.

Chat with the Nutripanda team to find out more about a nutritional plan that would provide health benefits specifically for you!



edinburgh nutrition Team

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