A new study has revealed that “freshly crushed garlic is a superior cardioprotective agent than processed garlic“. This is truly a logical conclusion considering fresh food is always better for your health than processed food, but the article published in the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry provides scientific proof. The results show that both freshly crushed garlic and its processed counterpart provide heart protection, but there is increased protection from the fresh allium sativum.
Garlic has long been known for its health benefits. The study’s authors write:
Garlic has been used for centuries for culinary purposes, and its health benefits have been known since at least 1500 B.C. when ancient Chinese and Indians used it as a blood-thinning agent. Hippocrates, the father of modern medicine, used garlic to treat cervical cancer. In China, garlic was shown to reduce the risk of esophageal and stomach cancers by 70%. Garlic is also effective against breast and prostate cancers due to the presence of S-allyl mercaptocysteine. Documented scientific investigations on garlic were initiated by Louis Pasteur who first reported its antibacterial and antifungal properties. Albert Schweitzer used this concept and treated dysentery in Africa with garlic. Subsequent studies found efficacy of garlic as a cardioprotectant.
To test the difference between freshly crushed and processed garlic, researchers made a garlic slurry by adding water, air drying the slurry, then adding water again. Rats were then divided into three groups: “(1) control, (2) fresh garlic, and (3) processed garlic”. The study’s results showed:
We compared the efficacy of freshly crushed garlic vs processed garlic as a cardioprotectant. Although rats fed with either freshly crushed garlic or processed garlic had superior ventricular performance compared to control during the reperfusion phase, the freshly crushed garlic group displayed significantly greater recovery of aortic flow [AF], left ventricular developed pressure [LVDP] and the maximum first derivative of developed pressure [LVmax dp/dt] compared to that achieved from processed garlic. The heart rate and coronary flow did not vary between the groups.
Good news for garlic lovers!