Garlic (Allium sativum) is available year round in almost every shop. When it comes to the smell, the spirits separate, but the health effects of garlic are undisputed. The white tuber is also popular when cooking. For a long time, the spicy ingredient is no longer valued only in the kitchen of hot countries, where garlic has always been on the plate not least because of its antibacterial properties. Spaghetti "Aglio e Olio", a fresh zaziki or a hint of garlic in the tomato sauce are also indispensable in many parts of the country. What should be considered when cooking with garlic and what makes the "Knobi" so healthy, read here.
Ingredients of garlic
A garlic tuber consists of individual toes, which are full of effective ingredients. Especially the sulfur-containing amino acid alliin and their degradation products are important to health. Fresh garlic contains 0.5 to 1 percent alliin.
Crushing garlic causes a chemical reaction: alliin is released by the enzyme alliinase in allicin transformed. This fabric is responsible for the typical smell of garlic - as well as for the sharp-aromatic taste of the toes. The juice of the toes has a sticky consistency.
Garlic as a medicinal plant: So healthy is garlic
Scientists ascribe to the ingredient allicin and its degradation products health-promoting effects on the body. In experiments, garlic inhibits the spread of fungi and bacteria and even showed a slight antiviral effect.
Furthermore, garlic - more specifically its sulfur-containing compound Ajoen - probably inhibits blood clotting, as it blood-thinning acts and thus prevents the sticking together of individual platelets. This allows the blood to flow better through the veins. This in turn can protect against the emergence of atherosclerosis, strengthens the circulation and prevents blood clots, ie thromboses such as heart attacks, before. The garlic sulfur compounds can also positively affect the cardiovascular system by Reduce blood lipid levels.
There are also studies that are easy antihypertensive Show characteristic of garlic. It is still controversial whether allicin is also able to reduce the bad LDL cholesterol levels.
In addition, garlic is a well-suited source for Selenium. Selenium is an essential trace element that is important for the metabolism, the immune system, the thyroid and healthy skin and nails.
Allicin - important for the effect
If you want to make good use of the healthy ingredients, you should be aware of the following when handling garlic: Allicin is formed only when the cell walls of the garlic are damaged - for example during pressing.
For this reason, it is useful to crush garlic before use and allow it to drain for about ten minutes, according to research. Thus, the enzyme alliinase has time to produce the protective substance allicin.
Anyone who then cooks the garlic for a few minutes while cooking, allows optimal effectiveness. Because the sulfur compounds are sensitive to heat.
Garlic capsules from the pharmacy
If you do not like the taste of garlic, you can fall back on garlic preparations in the form of tablets and dragees from the pharmacy. Their effectiveness is controversial. Many preparations additionally contain, for example, hawthorn and mistletoe for strengthening the heart and supporting circulation.
If you take blood-thinning medication, you should do without high-dose tablets and dragees with garlic or clarify the intake, at least with a doctor. Because the medicinal plant may possibly strengthen the anticoagulant effect of the drug.
Regeneration of the body: garlic and lemon treatment
Garlic is considered to be so healthy that there is even a cure with garlic: In the lemon-garlic cure you drink several times a day consisting of water, untreated lemons and garlic drink. This should:
- rid the body of calcium deposits
- regulate the blood pressure
- promote the cardiovascular system
Ginger, turmeric or pepper can support the effect.
What to do about a garlic banner?
Unfortunately, there is no effective remedy for the odor of garlic, which many people find unpleasant - neither is it against the notorious garlic flag that surrounds us after eating garlic.
However, home remedies such as milk, ginger, lemon juice, and peppermint chewing gum or sweets sometimes help to lessen the garlic breath for a while.
Chlorophyll capsules, a popular remedy for halitosis, can also provide a softened garlic flag. However, you should discuss this with your doctor in advance.
Purchase and storage of garlic
In most supermarkets, garlic is available all year round. You can buy the tuber fresh, semi-dry or dry (then usually chopped or as a powder).
In terms of storage, garlic prefers a dark, cool and airy but dry environment. Then keep the garlic bulbs for several weeks.
Cooking with garlic: what does he like?
Due to its aromatic taste garlic is very suitable for seasoning and refining salads, sauces, meat and vegetable dishes. Especially with dishes of the Mediterranean as well as the Middle Eastern and Asian kitchen garlic belongs to it simply.
Known dishes or garlic recipes include garlic prawns, garlic bread, garlic dip or garlic in combination with noodles such as spaghetti with garlic.
5 tips for preparation
Here are five tips for successful preparation of garlic for you:
- Garlic is easier to peel when you press with the broad side of a knife on the toe. The shell then often dissolves almost by itself.
- When cooking, make sure that the garlic does not burn, otherwise it will have a bitter taste and become inedible.
- Add a few garlic cloves to pan or oven dishes. Before you serve the food, you then fish your toes out again. The garlic leaves a wonderfully light aroma.
- The unpleasant smell of garlic on your hands can be released by rubbing your fingers against a stainless steel surface, such as the sink. Or you use a garlic press right away.
- Put in garlic: simply peel the toes, place in preserving jars, fill with olive oil and then close. So the garlic is preserved and the oil gets a wonderful aroma. The garlic oil is ideal for dressings or sauces.
A new trend from Japan is now too black garlic. Black garlic tastes like umami, the fifth flavor, and is good for garlic sauces and marinades.
Garlic: A tuber with history
Garlic has a long history as a medicinal plant: Already with the Egyptians he should have served as a tonic and been successfully used against intestinal parasites. Later, the tuber was even said to have a positive effect on bite marks, hair loss or lung disease.
Of all these areas of application, there is hardly any talk today. Garlic is now used primarily in the fight against the common disease arteriosclerosis.
Origin of the medicinal plant
Garlic is one of the leek plants and flourishes in this country from June to August. Although originally from Central Asia, the tuber is grown worldwide today.
Garlic can grow up to 90 centimeters high. The plant forms an underground bulb surrounded by a thin, white or reddish envelope. About five to twenty more toes are strung together in a circle around the main toe, which together form the tuber.