Recently, there has been a lot of talk about the health benefits of herbs. Garlic, known for its aroma and flavor power, also has extremely beneficial medicinal properties. Garlic’s therapeutic effect comes from its sulfur-containing compounds, such as allicin, which are also what give it its distinctive smell.
According to the University of Maryland Medical Center, when a fresh garlic clove is chewed, the chemical allin, which then converts to allicin, produces an acidic compound that reacts quickly with free radicals, destroying them.
Free radicals are by-products of digestion and also result from the break down of environmental toxins in your liver and other organs. Not only is it effectively killing bacteria, but it also fights yeast infections, viruses and parasites. All that said, garlic must be fresh to give you optimal health benefits.
You also won’t reap all the health benefits if you use jarred, powdered or dried versions. Plus, the fresh clove must be crushed or chopped in order to release an enzyme, which remains for about two hours. Toss it on a salad or pop it into the juicer with other veggies.