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5 Benefits of Eating Garlic during Pregnancy

Pregnancy brings along a sense of excitement as well as confusion on what to eat and what not to eat. With the arrival of newborns comes the bombardment of opinions and old wives’ tales especially from mothers and mothers-in-law along with nausea, tiredness, mood swings, and hunger cues. As the body of pregnant women becomes vulnerable to certain foods during pregnancy, one such topic for discussion becomes “is it safe to eat garlic during pregnancy?”

Garlic – a pungent bulbous plant/herb from the Allium (onion) familya. Allium class of family also contains onions, scallions, leeks, and shallots. In ancient times, Garlic was used for flavoring food, as a medicinal herb, vampire repellant, pregnancy diagnostic kit, to protect pregnant women from evil nymphs, etc. It is said that garlic was used as the currency to pay and feed the workers and slaves on the pyramids. It was so popular that its shortage of this aromatic bulb caused the stoppage of the construction. From being revered as an offering to God and yet was not cooked and eaten by the Egyptian priests, garlic was both celebrated and condemned by the different belief systems practiced across the world.

For centuries, garlic have been recognized for its various health benefits for pregnant women. It is absolutely safe for pregnant women to consume garlic during the first trimester. But the real concern arises how much garlic you should consume. Generally, a pregnant woman should eat between two and four cloves of fresh garlic per day. Additionally, when consuming garlic during the second and third trimesters of pregnancy, they should exercise caution, as eating too much garlic during this time may lower your blood pressure levels and thin your blood.

Garlic is a healthy addition to a pregnancy diet for a variety of reasons. Following are the 5 advantages of eating garlic during pregnancy:

1. Enhances a baby’s weight

Garlic helps with the low birth weight is an issue that arises during pregnancy. Several studies have shown that garlic helps babies of low birth weight or preterm birth gain weight. Garlic supplements also reduce the risk of birth complications by stimulating growth in the cells of your placenta.

2. Boosts blood circulation

Garlic has a unique property that has proven to be an effective blood flow stimulant. It contains potassium, which lowers blood pressure and cholesterol levels. In order to maintain a healthy pregnancy, your blood circulation must be optimal since much of the nutrients required for your baby come from you.

3. Reducing the risk of high blood pressure

Pre-eclampsia or high blood pressure is a potentially harmful condition that affects nearly one in 10 pregnant women. Garlic lowers the risk of having high blood pressure in pregnant women by reducing oxidative stress or inhibiting platelet aggregation. As garlic thins the blood and triggers low blood pressure, it is advisable to intake garlic with caution during the second and third trimesters.

4. Reduces fatigue

Feeling tired and fatigued during pregnancy is a common symptom during pregnancy but garlic helps enhance performance and reduce fatigue. It also helps to alleviate nausea and dizziness during pregnancy.

5. Boosts heart’s health by lowering cholesterol

Garlic has natural medicinal properties which helps in dealing with heart-related issues during pregnancy. It relaxes the hardened blood vessels by producing nitric oxide hence reducing the risk of cardiovascular diseases in pregnant women. Garlic is also rich in allicin compounds, which helps to balance the cholesterol level when eaten during pregnancy.

Is it safe to eat garlic during pregnancy?

Conclusion

With plenty of health benefits associated with garlic, you shouldn’t add too much of it to your diet too soon, no matter how tempting it may seem. If you consume too much, you might suffer from an upset stomach, bloating, diarrhea, bad breath, and body odor.

Even though garlic has many cautions associated with it during pregnancy, moderation in consuming it is a better alternative than avoiding it completely. Crushing or chopping 1 -2 cloves of garlic and adding it to your diet can lower the risk of complications during pregnancy. A healthy pregnancy requires a balanced diet, as most of the nutrients for the baby come from the mother, hence it is advisable to consult your doctor before you add raw garlic or garlic supplements to your diet.


Dates during Pregnancy, click here

Read 7 Benefits of Almonds during Pregnancy, click here

For 7 Benefits of Jaggery (Gur), click here

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Hardneck Garlic vs Softneck Garlic – Why Hardneck Garlic is Better?

With a smell that’s so appetizing and strong flavor, there’s no wonder that garlic has been a good kitchen companion for ages. However, some don’t know that there are 2 primary types of garlic and these include softneck and hardneck. There’s a significant difference between these two and its important to know their differences first before you choose any of these garlic.

Hardneck Garlic

It also renowned as a top-selling garlic and got its name because it has hard neck literally. The neck also refers to the flowering stalk or stem, which grows through the bulb’s center. Its firm stalk makes it a bit impossible for the harvesters to braid the hardneck garlic. In addition to that, this kind of garlic has distinct spicy flavor and it’s easy to peel due to its large cloves and thick skin. It also grows well in places with cold climates. It has a short shelf life of four to ten months.

Softneck Garlic

Artichoke garlic or softneck garlic has soft stalk that makes it simple to braid and cut. It has mild flavor that’s why this variety is used commonly for processed products like the seasonings. It’s also the same kind of garlic sold in the grocery stores. Moreover, this type of garlic thrives in warmer places. Upon maturity, a bulb could hold up to 20 cloves. This is why it is typically irregular and big in shape. Softneck garlic has also tight, thin skin around every clove. This is why it’s an ordeal to peel one. When compared to hardneck garlic, softneckk has long shelf life.

How Beneficial Hardneck Garlic Over Softneck Garlic?

The potential advantages of taking hardneck garlic include reduced risk of cardiovascular diseases. It has been studied in different conditions such as atherosclerosis, high blood pressure, CAD or coronary artery disease, and heart attack. The daily flexibility of blood vessels has shown to enhance with intake of hardneck garlic. The likelihood of damage in blood vessels because of chronic inflammation has been shown to reduce when this vegetable is taken regularly.

Hardneck garlic has also a rejuvenating effect on one’s blood circulation and support the defenses of the body against flu or cold virus. It could be due to the reason that it has high concentration of vitamin B6, allicin, and vitamin C, which helps boost immunity and improve circulation. Research also indicated that some qualities of hardneck garlic can help in reducing blood pressure and cholesterol, which will keep your heart healthy.

Hardneck garlic’s anti-fungal properties makes it useful for people that suffer from the fungal infections. It can also useful for skin blemishes because it helps purify blood.

We have sourced Organic Himalayan Hardneck (red) garlic, which is grown using spring water, better quality air and much cleaner environment in general. Its a garlic hard to come by and is generally sold at high premium in commercial market. There is a distinct difference in taste as well as the size of the cloves compared to what we see in the normal garlic. We are currently accepting orders for Chutney as well as Pickle made out of the same. While we dispatch a batch of chutneys almost every week, the pickling process of Garlic takes a while and do see the expected delivery date range before ordering.

Real picture of Garlic we source

 

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7 Proven Health Benefits of Garlic

Himalayan Hard-neck Garlic

If you think that garlic is perfect to add a zing to your mashed potatoes, bread or pasta, you better think again. The truth is that this pungent vegetable offers a lengthy list of health benefits that will surely convince you to eat more garlic every day. Its has been recognized all over the world and in various healing systems as one of the best natural healers known to mankind and after reading these benefits, you definitely would want to add more of this super food in your diet. Research shows that processing and eating garlic in different ways has different benefits to the body as its compounds change their properties according to the way they are processed. 

1. Garlic is Rich Anti-inflammatory Properties .

Garlic contains four compounds which can make a significant difference in fighting off inflammation. Some of the compounds found in garlic may even reduce irritation and pain the natural way through mimicking how pain medications work as revealed by studies that looked into the effects of garlic consumption.

2. Keep the Colds Away with Garlic

A certain study has tracked 146 adults who were healthy enough during the flu season to see if garlic will be able to keep those sniffles at bay. The participants were then divided to two groups, the first half being administered with a garlic supplement while the other half received a placebo pill. The second group that was given the placebo pill suffered from 65 colds during the period of the study while the other group that takes garlic supplements just came down with 24 cases of cold. Even though this sounds promising, there is still a need for further research before garlic can be hailed as the all around cure for colds.  

3. Fight Off Certain Types of Bacteria and Fungus

If you belong to 15 to 25% of humans suffering from athlete’s foot, you can get rid of this smelly problem by having your feet soaked in the bath with some crushed cloves of garlic.

4. Avoid Food Poisoning with Garlic

A certain study has revealed that a garlic compound is 100 times more effective compared to common antibiotics as far as fighting off Campylobacter is concerned. This is a kind of bacteria that often thrives in raw chicken which can cause diarrhea, vomiting, and nausea. While it is not a guarantee that you will not get sick when you eat garlic, this compound can be very useful when it comes to clean areas where food is prepared and even help in preserving packaged foods such as coleslaw, deli meats, pasta, and potato salads.

5. Preventative Measure for Heart Disease

It has been revealed that consuming garlic every day can help with heart diseases and even lower cholesterol levels. Garlic contains a lot of antioxidant properties which can also be useful in cleansing the different systems of the body.

Garlic contains allicin which can regulate blood pressure and blood sugar levels. To make the most out of the allicin content of garlic, it is best to consume it semi-raw or raw. Once cooked, allicin tends to lose its medicinal properties so going raw is more advisable.  

6. Garlic May Help in Cancer Prevention

There are some studies that reveal the relationship between consuming garlic and lowered risks of specific kinds of cancer. This vegetable can help prevent colon and stomach cancer. One more study discovered that middle-aged ladies have 35% lesser risks of developing colon cancer when they ate vegetables, fruit, and garlic as part of their well-balanced diet.

7. Garlic can help detoxify heavy metals in Body

When consumed in high doses, it has show to prevent organ damage due to heavy metal toxicity.

A 28 day study in workers of a battery plant (major exposure to lead) found that garlic reduced lead levels in the blood by 19%. It also reduced many clinical signs of toxicity, including headaches and blood pressure amongst many others.

Three doses of garlic each day even outperformed the drug D-penicillamine in symptom reduction.

Conclusion

Though it has been used as a common ingredient in cuisines and dishes all over the world, it seems our ancestors knew how magical properties of this humble vegetable produced when consumed in different methods and styles. Its just that modern research is now agreeing with what mankind has known for a lifetime. So its a great idea to include more garlic in your diet in whatever shape, form or size as it would definitely have some benefit or the other to our body.

We now have available Chutney and Pickle made from Hardneck garlic, grown in Himalayas, which we are shipping all over India. While the chutney is cooked on almost weekly basis and is shipped out in 7-10 days of your order, the garlic pickle might take 40 days to get ready. Do check the expected delivery date of pickle before you order.