The RG homogenate is prepared by collecting garlic cloves and removing several outer layers. The solution is then filtered and a homogenate sample is obtained [ 13 ]. Garlic powder is prepared by pulverising crushed and dehydrated garlic cloves.
This is mainly used for cooking purposes. AGE is obtained by placing garlic cloves in ethanol for a minimum of 20 months at room temperature. This reduces the concentration of allicin [ 13 ]. Which could reduce the medicinal properties of garlic as allicin is said to play a significant role. Garlic oil is obtained through a complex steaming and distillation process and is used in cooking or as medicinal oil. The preparation of the garlic bulb is probably the most important factor in its effectiveness. Fresh garlic is often described as the best preparation to use to get superlative medicinal value out of the herb.
Dried or cooked garlic often loses its potency because the amount of allicin present is significantly decreased in the cooking process [ 3 ]. More studies on sulphur are currently being done as this could also play a significant role, especially in organically grown garlic. Other studies state that the active ingredients are more directly associated with sulphur-containing amino acids, such as allicin, S-allylcysteine SAC , S-allylmercaptocysteine SAMC S-methylcysteine, diallyl disulphide and sulfoxides [ 14 ].
Allicin is a very unstable molecule and breaks down very easily. This is why it is recommended to eat fresh garlic as it contains the highest amount of allicin. It is also the reason for the strong odour that garlic possesses. The more prominent this odour is the higher levels of allicin and beneficial values the bulb is said to have [ 15 ].
Due to this instability medical companies have now started to develop garlic supplements that contain Alliin - a stable precursor to allicin. It is only released upon digestion meaning the body will have the added benefit of having a sufficient amount of the favourable metabolite along with the safer more stable option [ 15 ]. The preparation of the garlic is of vital importance and studies have shown that each preparation has its own beneficial effects and more importantly its own threshold to when it starts becoming detrimental to the body.
Likewise a certain amount of garlic supplementation would be beneficial in the male reproductive system. Unfortunately this amount is still unknown. Garlic has been considered as a disease preventative food and its effects on the human health have been studied. Garlic infused medicine is on the increase due to the proposed beneficial effects on human health. The effects of garlic on both plant and animal models is best known for its ability to decrease the amount of lipids or free fatty acids, as well as its anti-atherogenic effects in both models [ 8 ]. Garlic supplements are now also being widely developed and recent studies have shown just that by mimicking the effect garlic has on the body.
Allium products have the potential to reduce the risk of developing cancer or the potential to decrease the risk factors associated with cancers [ 17 ]. Research has been done on this and some evidence has been found that it has beneficial effects but there are also studies that show no effect at all [ 18 ].
Garlic has shown to have therapeutic effects, but the side effects are poorly investigated. The medicinal effects of garlic on certain diseases and specific systems will subsequently be discussed. Cardiovascular disease CVD also known as heart disease is becoming an increasingly alarming problem in developing countries as it is the most common form of mortality [ 14 ].
Countries such as Spain and the USA have always been associated with heart disease, but developing countries are now showing an increasing trend in developing heart conditions [ 19 ]. With risk factors such as hypertension and hypercholesterolemia present, the onset of heart disease becomes more likely [ 20 ].
The effects of garlic on the cardiovascular system have been attracting a lot of interest in recent times with the development of modern medicine in particular [ 3 ]. An increase in the amount of cholesterol in the body can lead to the formation of atherosclerotic plaques and this is a risk factor for both heart attacks and strokes.
Low-density lipoprotein LDL cholesterol levels can greatly be reduced without affecting the good High-density lipoprotein HDL cholesterol levels. The mode of action is said to be that garlic blocks the liver from making too much LDL because of its bio-active ingredients [ 15 ].
The high levels of cholesterol result in an increase in free-radical producing peptides. Reactive oxygen species ROS and oxidative stress OS levels are also key markers in CVD and by decreasing these levels the onset of heart disease can be delayed. Unfortunately the likeliness of developing heart disease increases with age and decreasing the amount of harmful oxidation in the body would be beneficial.
Step 2: Put the Garlic in the Rice Cooker...
Garlic can delay the onset of heart disease due to its antioxidant properties. The type of extract used is of vital importance as it will influence the beneficial effects. Garlic reduces the amount of cholesterol in the body and by doing this the heart becomes more protected. Garlic also plays an important role in maintaining the structure and efficacy of endothelial cells and endothelial function [ 21 ].
The administration of AGE inhibits the progression of coronary- artery calcification and reduces the risk of a myocardial infarction or a heart attack [ 20 ]. Similarly, Allicor a garlic powder tablet was given to people suffering from coronary heart disease CHD. This resulted in decreasing the risk of myocardial infarction, more significantly noted in males as opposed to females [ 14 ].
Studies have shown that the most effective way to reduce CVD is to try and reduce all the risk factors. Garlic-based preparations is thought to be promising agents for multifunctional risk reduction, but the mode of action remains slightly obscure [ 14 ]. With an increase in age the metabolic parameters of an individual is likely to change and this is evident in the onset of menopause in females.
Together with diabetes, excessive weight, hypertension and endothelial dysfunction, menopause is a well-known risk factor for CVD which could lead to an increase in metabolic parameters. Evidence shows that the vascular function in postmenopausal women could be affected by the changes in the reproductive hormones. One of the main precautionary measures for postmenopausal women with an increased CVD risk is exercise, however since ancient times garlic has been used as a treatment for CVD. It is said that AGE combined with exercise resulted in greater body weight loss than either AGE or exercise on its own.
With the onset of menopause, fat and cholesterol levels are increased as well as the degree of oxidative stress. AGE has shown to reduce all these factors and is more easily absorbed in the body than other garlic preparations [ 21 ]. Blood pressure or arterial BP is the pressure exerted by circulating blood upon the walls of blood vessels [ 22 ]. BP can fluctuate from person to person depending on the individual and their health.
Hypertension and diabetes is said to be lifestyle-related diseases that has become a serious issue for countries previously not associated with it. Asian countries have now started to show a large increase in the amount of people suffering from high BP, with Japan having an estimated total of seven million people living with the disease [ 24 ]. Moreover one billion adults worldwide are affected by hypertension with about sixty-five million of them residing in the USA.
Hypertension has been considered to be the most important bio-marker in the onset of CVD.
Can Dogs Eat Garlic?
Anti-hypertensive treatment has not always resulted in the desired effect of reducing the BP and alternative means of medication have now been developed. Garlic supplements and garlic derived products are becoming more and more popular in western medicine.
This has led to more studies being performed in order to establish the compound specifically responsible for lowering of the BP and reducing hypertension. The lowering effect that garlic has on BP is said to be due to the fact that the nitric oxide NO system is more active than the renin-angiotensin system.
In a recent study both serum NO and H 2 S were measured in diabetic rats and it was shown that chronic administration of garlic normalised both gaseous molecules and reduce BP [ 26 ]. Both forms of garlic resulted in an increase in the activation of NOS. An increase in NO will lead to an increase in the relaxation of the blood vessels, and will therefor lead to a decrease in the BP.
However, studies have shown that both AGE and RG require at least weeks of daily administration before their action is expressed and this suggests that there could be a different mechanism for the lowering of BP [ 27 ]. The administration of AGE improved the condition of arteries as well as prevented the stiffening of the blood vessels which is a key marker in aging. By doing this it also improves erythrocytes which are the main component of blood. And therefor improves peripheral circulation and leads to a decrease in erythrocyte deformation.
The improvement of blood circulation caused by AGE could be one of the causes of lowering BP, but RG showed to cause an increase in erythrocyte deformation and could lead to anaemia [ 25 ]. It has been shown to significantly reduce BP in hypertensive patients when compared to those receiving a placebo [ 28 ]. Unfortunately the exact mechanism is not entirely elucidated as of yet. However, RG showed more harmful than beneficial effects. These results suggest that with regard to decrease in hypertension aged garlic would be the better and safer option [ 24 ].
It is also a safer treatment to use in conjunction with conventional anti-hypertensive therapy [ 25 ]. Diabetes mellitus, or simply diabetes, is an endocrine disorder that forms part of a group of metabolic diseases characterised by elevated blood sugar levels or an insulin deficiency. Between one and two percent of the global population is affected by diabetes and there are roughly million patients worldwide [ 29 ]. The most common form of diabetes is type two diabetes mellitus and comprises 80 percent of all diabetic populations [ 30 ]. A predicted increase from 51 to 72 million individuals affected by diabetes is expected in developed countries in the next decade; this translates to an increase of more than 42 percent.
Developing countries will however face the brunt of the pandemic as it is expected to show an increase of percent [ 31 ]. Diabetes is divided into two categories based on its mechanisms. It is also referred to as insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus IDDM or juvenile onset diabetes due to the fact that it is prominent in children [ 32 ]. This is a rare case of diabetes in comparison to its counterpart.
Type 2 diabetes results from insulin resistance, a condition in which cells fail to use insulin properly, in some cases it is combined with an absolute insulin deficiency. It is also referred to as non-insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus NIDDM or adult-onset diabetes [ 32 ]. Garlic is recognised for its therapeutic potential for controlling diabetes and its subsequent metabolic complications. The hypoglycaemic effect that garlic is said to have is attributed to the presence of allicin and sulphur compounds.
Studies have shown that the oral administration of RG significantly reduced blood glucose levels and improved insulin sensitivity in garlic treated rats. Administration of aqueous garlic in patients with Type 1 diabetes has been reported to increase insulin sensitivity. Furthermore, metabolic complications such as increased serum-triglyceride, insulin and uric acid levels usually observed in diabetic rats were normalised after garlic administration [ 30 ].
Interestingly it has been observed that chronic administration of RG significantly reduced body weight, however the mechanism as to how garlic contributes to a reduction in body wait is still unclear. A study by Elkayam [ 26 ] has shown that allicin administered for weeks reduced weight gain in fructose fed rats. Together with reducing glucose levels allicin also has the added advantage of decreased weight gain. Glycation is the spontaneous phenomenon that occurs whenever proteins are exposed to reducing sugars and is depended on the degree and duration of hyperglycaemia in the body.
It has been suggested that a direct reaction referred to as the Maillard reaction takes place during hyperglycaemia. This is a reaction that occurs between the sugars and proteins in the body. Advanced glycation end products AGEPs are formed when glycated proteins react with dicarbonyl intermediates to form complex heterogeneous, cross-linked and fluorescent molecules. Little is known about the chemistry of AGEPs but AGEPs are said to generate free radicals and lead to oxidative damage and this inevitably leads to diabetic complications [ 29 ]. The exact mechanism as to how garlic decreases glycation is uncertain but it is said to be due to decreasing the free radicals in the body, and it also increases anti-oxidant enzymes.
Increased homocystein levels damages the endothelial cells that line blood vessels and prompts apoptosis by producing strand breaks in the DNA. This causes thrombotic activity that could result in heart attacks and strokes. Individuals living with dementia have a much higher level of homocystein than healthy people and there is a significant link between high levels of homocystein and loss of cognition.
It has also been indicated that the intake of AGE decreases homocystein levels [ 20 , 34 ]. Studies have also shown that there could be a link between heart diseases and dementia risks [ 34 ].
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Risk factors such as hypertension, high cholesterol, increasing levels of homocystein, inflammation and oxidative stress are all related to both heart disease and dementia. In addition to oxidative stress, free radicals such as ROS are closely associated with CVDs, cerebrovascular diseases such as dementia and cancer.
It is believed that the damage done to DNA, proteins and lipids are considered of the foremost causes in the commencement and development of the diseases. Free radicals increase in number when there is an infection, inflammation, hyperhomocysteinemia or exposure to smoking, drugs and radiation [ 35 ]. When the LDL cholesterol levels are changed due to oxidative stress and free radicals, the risk of atherosclerosis, cardio and cerebrovascular diseases increase.
In addition neuronal apoptosis is triggered which leads to an increase in the risk of brain atrophy and dementia. AGE is known to lower homocystein levels, increase microcirculation and provide protection for endothelial cells from the effects of oxidation. Following a stroke the risk factors of neurodegenerative conditions and CVD include myocardial ischemic or reperfusion injury, AGE can protect the body against this by increasing the production of constitutive NO [ 20 , 34 ]. Cancer or malignant neoplasm is a broad group of diseases involving unregulated cell growth.
Cell division and uncontrollable growth of these cells form malignant tumours in individuals living with cancer. These tumours are very likely to invade nearby parts of the body. The lymphatic system or bloodstream may also spread the cancer to more distant parts of the body. However, not all tumours are cancerous.
Garlic and Its Effects on Health with Special Reference to the Reproductive System
Benign tumours do not invade neighbouring tissues and do not spread throughout the body [ 36 ]. There are over different known cancers that affect humans ranging from breast and prostate cancer to colorectal and lung cancer. In the year approximately 12 million people worldwide were said to be living with cancer and this figure is expected to rise to about 21 million by the year Lung cancer is responsible for the most deaths closely followed by breast and colorectal cancer [ 37 ].
Garlic is said to have chemo-preventive properties and its effects have been closely studied on various cancers. The antitumor effects that garlic potentially possesses are directly attributed to its anti-mutagenic properties [ 38 ]. The formations of tumours in vitro and in vivo were shown to be greatly decreased after the administration of fresh garlic, although the mechanism of action is still unknown.
Wait, Can I Substitute Onion Powder for Fresh Onions?
The timing and dose of the garlic could be the main factor in inhibition of the pro-carcinogens [ 38 ]. A possible mode of action as to how garlic can prevent cancer is by the effects of Diallyl trisulphide DATS. DATS is a by-product of garlic that exhibits several pharmacological effects e. Oral ingestion of aged garlic that is lacking enzymatically produced allicin due to the fact that it was not chopped reduced 1, 2-dimethylhydrazine induced colon tumours significantly [ 40 ]. With specific reference to skin cancer, the treatment results are inconclusive and more research will have to be conducted [ 41 ].
Stomach tumours were greatly decreased by administration of AGE. The toxicity of garlic was not directly responsible for the death of cancer cells alone although it does play an important role. Another key role in the prevention of cancers is garlics effect on the immune system. Macrophage activity, NK and killer cells as well as the cytokine TNF were all shown to have increased activity after administration of garlic and this resulted in an increase in antitumor response [ 42 ]. Colorectal cancer is the third leading cause of cancer death in the world.
In this respect normal garlic cannot be administrated and would need to be introduced as part of a strict diet. The Garlic and low meat diet did however show a decrease in colorectal tumour growth [ 43 ]. Infertility and especially idiopathic infertility has been on the increase during the last century. Infertility is the inability to conceive after having unprotected sexual intercourse for more than a year of trying [ 44 ].
This has led to a lot of research on male fertility and the male reproductive system. Garlic and its effects on the male reproductive system has caused a tremendous amount of interest in the Andrology and reproductive field as some researchers believe it to have a beneficial influence and others believe it to have a detrimental effect on the male reproductive system.
The possible reason as to why these discrepancies exist could be due to the preparation and the dosage. In a study performed by Qian and co-workers it was shown that the administration of garlic to rats showed a decrease in sperm quality and functionality. The amount and preparation of garlic will result in a decrease in specific seminal parameters. The crude extract of garlic results in an increase in the percentage of empty seminiferous tubules. It has been reported to reduce membrane disintegration and irreversible immobilization of sperm [ 46 ] while at the same time reducing sperm viability [ 47 ].
The majority of data report garlic to have deleterious effects on specifically the male reproductive system. In another study testicular morphological alterations were noted after male adult rats were given 50 mg kg -1 of garlic powder for days [ 48 ]. Hammami and El May found that garlic improved male sexual dysfunction in direct contrast to the studies previously mentioned which claimed garlic to have a negative impact on male reproductive function. The main difference and possibly the reason between different results could be the lack of standardization between research models and the different amounts of garlic given to test subjects [ 3 ].
Spermatogenesis is the process whereby spermatozoa are produced. Pilau Rice - known as pilau, pullao, pulao and pilaf , this rice dish will take between up to an hour to prepare if made the traditional way. The cooking time can be reduced with various ingredient compromises, like using ready-fried onions instead of caramelizing the onion yourself, and using quorn mince rather than taking the time to brown lamb mince.
Many Indians are vegetarian, and meat is not necessary for this dish; omitting the mince and just using chickpeas for the protein, or substituting quorn mince will make the recipe vegan or vegetarian. There are many possible ingredient variations in this rice recipe, which is cooked from South Asia to the Middle East. This recipe is a South Asian variant cooked on the stove-top, and isn't finished off in the oven or cooked using nuts, raisins, vermicelli or other grains like a Persian pilaf would be. Although the rice in many pilau dishes looks brown, the colour comes from the fact the onion used for the recipe is caramelized, not from using brown rice.
Stirring the rice in the oil before the water is added ensures the grains remain separate. The rice served in many restaurants and eaten in some Pakistani homes is very oily, but you do not need to add this much oil to get the proper taste and texture rice.