Garlic May Ward Off More Than Vampires
Two reviews of studies examining the effects of garlic suggest that it is not only good for the heart, it may also help ward off stomach and colon cancers.
A review of 13 studies in the Annals of Internal Medicine concluded that garlic has a modest effect on cholesterol levels, generally reducing them by about four to six percent (or about 15.7 milligrams).
But garlic may help the heart in other ways, such as reducing clotting tendencies.
Another review of 18 studies published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition concluded that garlic may have a protective effect against stomach and colorectal cancers, but it is not clear exactly how much garlic is needed or what form is most effective.
It probably isn't necessary to consume garlic every day; most researchers believe five cloves of raw or cooked garlic per week is sufficient.
The jury is still out on garlic supplements, which are more convenient (and less odorous), but may not offer the same benefits.
Source: Annals of Internal Medicine, 2000; 133, 420-429; American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, 2000; 72, 1047-1052
This appeared in ACE FitnessMatters, ACE's official magazine.
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