Garlic Diet Myths and Facts

Garlic is the most well-known food as a medicinal ingredient, but there are many myths that are misunderstood as well as its efficacy.

There are several myths about the garlic diet that have caused confusion about the properties of garlic . While it is true that it is a nutritious and healthy food, some of garlic’s ‘almost miraculous’ effects are not true.

Like other foods, these bulbs can contribute to your health when included in a healthy and balanced diet. And although garlic’s pharmacological potential has been extensively studied, its specific effects are nothing more than a false belief.

If you are curious about garlic myths, read this article.

Garlic Diet Myths and 4 Facts

Garlic (Allium sativum L.) is a spice widely used in the Mediterranean and many other parts of the world. It is often used to season meat, fish, soup and rice dishes and is a valued food for its medicinal properties.

An ‘Avicenna Journal of Phytomedicine’ review says allicin, the main active compound in garlic, has antibiotic, anti-inflammatory, antihypertensive, hypoglycemic, antiproliferative and antiviral effects.

Therefore, eating it on its own or as a complementary therapy helps in the prevention and treatment of various health disorders. The problem is that most of its effects aren’t as magical as some think. In fact, some of the benefits of garlic are classified as myths.

1. Fasting Garlic for Weight Loss

There is a myth that eating garlic on an empty stomach can help you lose weight. Chewing a clove of garlic on an empty stomach in the morning or eating it with a spoonful of olive oil or honey is said to activate metabolism and promote fat burning.

However, doctors, nutritionists and scientists all refute these claims. First of all , there is no evidence that eating garlic on an empty stomach is more effective than any other time .

There is no food or compound that can cause significant weight loss by itself. The weight loss process requires a multidisciplinary approach involving nutritionists, doctors, physical trainers and even psychologists .

Maintaining a healthy and stable weight requires a comprehensive approach. In addition, it is necessary to prepare a customized plan for each individual considering the characteristics of each individual .

The Scientific Facts About Garlic and Weight Loss

It is clear that garlic alone will not help you lose weight. However, inclusion in a balanced, calorie-controlled diet can be beneficial.

According to  a meta-analysis in the ‘International Journal for Vitamin and Nutrition Research’, garlic supplementation did not significantly affect body weight or body mass index (BMI). However, it may help reduce waist circumference in obese patients.

‘A study shared in Advanced Biomedical Research found that garlic supplements promote weight and body fat loss in people with non-alcoholic fatty liver disease .

Similar results were obtained in other animal studies , but products such as garlic oil and garlic extract were used instead of raw garlic.

The truth is, you can add garlic to your diet when it comes to weight loss.

Read more: How to Make Turmeric and Garlic Mayonnaise

garlic diet weight loss
You cannot lose weight with just one food. To become healthy and slim requires a multidisciplinary approach.

2. Detoxify the blood

There are people who eat raw garlic to ‘purify’ or ‘detoxify’ the blood . It is believed that garlic’s sulfur compounds stimulate liver function and promote the elimination of toxins from the blood.

There is no scientific evidence that raw garlic, aged garlic, or supplements to these foods purify the blood. On the contrary, medical and nutritional experts warn that claims to ‘detoxify’ will be of no use .

The reason is very simple. Both the liver and kidneys are responsible for filtering the blood and breaking down waste products. Therefore, if these organs are healthy, there is no need to take external supplements .

Garlic is, of course, a number of foods that provide essential nutrients for the proper functioning of these organs, but eating it alone cannot filter out toxins or waste products.

An effective way to protect the body from toxins is a healthy diet, regular exercise, and avoiding habits such as alcohol and smoking . Reducing your intake of ultra-processed foods and drinking water can also help.

3. Myth about the garlic diet: cure for COVID-19

The myth that eating garlic ‘cure’ corona became popular. Eight cloves of raw garlic put in 3 liters of boiling water and drunk can “magically” relieve symptoms.

Of course, this is far from reality . Despite being a food with antibacterial and antiviral potential, it cannot eliminate the coronavirus or its clinical symptoms. It is harmless to most and will not work.

A Study on Garlic and its Potential Against COVID-19

Currently, medical experts agree that garlic is not a cure for COVID-19. There are some scientific publications that talk about possible benefits for this disease.

Scientists, via Nutrition Journal, say that garlic’s organosulfur compounds and flavonoids have immunomodulatory effects that could be useful as adjuvant therapy for infections. In particular, it can contribute to reducing the side effects of drugs by reducing the amount of use, but more conclusive research is still needed.

However, the potential risks should not be overlooked. In a case report shared in ‘ Special Care in Dentistry’ , one patient burned his oral mucosa by consuming raw garlic daily as a measure to boost his immune system during the pandemic.

The same publication warns that improper use of these remedies  can cause abdominal and skin burns .

The nutrients in garlic are beneficial to health when included in a complete and balanced diet. Raw garlic diet should be cautious.

Garlic Diet COVID
Many people ate large amounts of garlic to boost their immune system during the COVID-19 pandemic. However, this was not an effective action.

4. Myth about garlic diet: anti-cancer effect

The anti-cancer effect is the most famous garlic efficacy myth. Eating garlic raw, cooked, or taking supplements does not prevent or cure cancer. This comes from several preliminary and observational studies that speak of the spice’s anti-tumor potential .

In particular, it has been shown to act on cancers such as prostate, colorectal, breast and endometrial cancers, but there is not enough evidence to consider it as a therapeutic agent.

Conversely, UPF (Pompeu Fabra University) has stated that garlic is not of sufficient quality to confirm its anti-cancer properties and  points out that more rigorous studies are needed.

Providing antioxidants, vitamins, minerals and other key nutrients, it is a good idea to include garlic in your diet and other healthy habits related to disease prevention.

Read more: Natural Remedies for the Pain of Ingrown Toenails

A garlic diet that has nothing to do with miracles

Including garlic in your regular diet can provide several health benefits. However, it is not in itself a miracle disease or overweight cure .

Garlic can cause nausea, burning in the mouth, and stomach irritation, so be careful when eating it every day, especially raw. It is best to add them to your diet in moderation.

If you take a supplement, you should follow the manufacturer’s consumption recommendations . Above all, keep in mind that there is no substitute for any medical treatment.

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