Due to garlic's strong odor and taste, the essential oil is not often used in aromatherapy. Instead, is it consumed by adding it to foods as a flavoring ingredient, but the numerous health benefits are often overlooked.
How Long Has Garlic Been Around?
Garlic has been cultivated since 2000 B.C. making it one of the oldest cultivated plants in human history. The builders of the pyramids in Egypt were fed garlic daily to keep them healthy. The Greeks ate garlic to treat intestinal worms and other digestive system aliments. In both old folk medicine and Native American medicine; garlic was applied to draw out the poisons of bee, wasp, and scorpion stings. These cultures also applied garlic to snakebites for the the same purpose of drawing out the poison.
What Else Can Garlic Do?
The American Indians would crush the bulbs in water then drink the tea on an empty stomach to remedy intestinal worms. European doctors prevented gangrene by applying garlic to swabs and dressing for soldier injuries in both World War I and II. Applying garlic in your life promotes a healthier life in many different ways. Roman herbalists have listed garlic as a treatment for sixty-one different aliments.
Is Garlic Still Important In Today's Society?
Garlic is native to Europe and Asia, but can be found growing year-round in any mild climates. In 2014, the garlic production in the world was 25 million tons. China accounts for a staggering 80% of that world's production and India comes in second with just over 1 million tons. The majority of the garlic grown in the United States is in a town called Gilroy, California. Although the city calls itself the "garlic capitol of the world," the United States production doesn't compete to that of South and Southeast Asia.
How Should You Be Cooking With Garlic?
When using garlic for different aliments it's important to remember to add it to your food when it is nearly finished cooking. Most garlic lovers probably add the garlic into their meals early in the cooking process. I mean, the longer is cooks, the more the flavor right? Wrong!
When garlic is heated above the temperature of 140 degrees Fahrenheit, it destroys the active ingredient, allicin, which contains all of the antibacterial and anti-fungal properties. Place garlic in your dish at the end of the cooking process or even rub the bulbs on your food after you have removed it from the heat. You will still obtain an ideal amount of flavor, but receive the amazing benefits of allicin.
Another helpful tip is to crush or mince the garlic when you begin cooking and let it sit on the side while you continue cooking. This allows the alliinase enzymes to activate and really start working for when you add in to the dish.
Coles, Terri. “Benefits of Garlic: 11 Healthy Reasons To Eat More Of This Smelly Superfood. ”HuffPost Canada, HuffPost, 19 Dec. 2016, www.huffingtonpost.ca/2013/09/25/benefits-of-garlic_n_3990616.html.
“Garlic Production in 2014.” FAOSTAT, Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, Statistics Division, 2 Sept. 2017, www.fao.org/faostat/en/.
Schiller, Carol, and David Schiller. The Aromatherapy Encyclopedia: A Concise Guide to Over 395 Plant Oils. Basic Health Publications, 2012.