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Garlic is a perennial plant that gardeners or farmers often grow as an annual for its flavourful bulb that has strong pungent taste. Garlic has grey-ish-green foot long leaves with globular clusters of small white flowers similar to the Allium genus that includes onions, shallot, leaks and chives.
Garlic is a member of the Lily, Liliaceae or Amaryllis (Amaryllidaceae) families. The name “Allium sativum” is derived from the Celtic word “all”, meaning burning or stinging; and the Latin word “sativum” meaning planted or cultivated. The English word, garlic, is derived from the Anglo-Saxon “gar-leac” or spear plant, referring to its flowering stalk.
Garlic has been cultivated and used medicinally for at least 5000 years from the middle east. There is historical evidence for its use by the Babylonians 4500 years ago and by the Chinese 2000 years ago. Garlic may have originated in the Kirgiz Desert of west-central Asia, but at any rate, it is now been naturalized to the rest of the world by French, Spanish and Portugese. China is the now leading producer of Garlic followed by India, South Korea, Egypt, Russia and then the U.S.
Garlic had a reputation in being very protective, Ancient Egyptian used Garlic to ward off evil spirits, as offerings to ancient deities, garlic was used by sailors at sea to protect against accidents and in the middle ages soldiers wore garlic as shield. Garlic was employed as a food and medicine by the Greek physician Hippocrates and the Greek philosopher and botanist Theophrastus, and then later the ancient Roman philosopher and naturalist, Pliny.
Both in Ayurveda and Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) Garlic is recognized as a powerful herbal remedy. Throughout history in the Middle East, East Asia, and Nepal, garlic has been used to treat lung conditions, heart conditions such as cholesterol and blood pressure, liver disorders, digestion, flatulence, colic, intestinal worms, rheumatism, diabetes and fevers. Garlic has decent amounts of calcium, copper, potassium, phosphorus, iron and vitamin B1.
Cautions & contraindications:
This information is for educational purposes only and is not intended to diagnose, treat or cure any disease or illness. Please consult your healthcare provider prior to the use of this product if you are pregnant, nursing, taking medications or have a medical condition. Individual results may vary.