Garlic and High Blood Pressure

Garlic and High Blood Pressure

Garlic is native to Central Asia and has been an intrinsic part of the Mediterranean, Asian, African and European diet. The ancient Egyptians valued it so much so that they worshipped it and placed clay models in the tomb of Tutankhamen. It was even used as currency. Although it gained popularity in the U.S. by 1940, today Americans alone consume more than 250 million pounds of garlic.

Many studies and trials on the effect of garlic on high blood pressure have been undertaken. In a meta analysis of seven randomized trials on the effects of garlic three trials showed promise as there was a significant reduction in systolic blood pressure and four showed a reduction in diastolic pressure. The researchers thus drew conclusions that garlic may help patients with mild hypertension.

In another study in 1993, people consumed one clove of garlic daily for twelve weeks and found that both their blood pressure and cholesterol levels had decreased mildly.

Garlic powder supplements may be used under the advice of a medical practitioner. Garlic can also be a blood thinner just like aspirin, Coumadin (warfarin), or Trental (pentoxifylline). Hence it may be contra indicated in conjunction with these drugs, Vitamin E and ginkgo. It has also been recommended that people stop taking garlic supplements weeks before and after surgery.

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