Not only is garlic a great ingredient to add in almost any dish, it also has countless health benefits ranging from preventing colds to aiding in digestion.
I absolutely love the taste of garlic and tend to add it to almost everything that I cook. However, I didn’t realize all of the health benefits that garlic has until recently. Garlic is most effective, health-wise, when it’s crushed, chopped or eaten raw.
Here are some of the amazing benefits of garlic that you probably didn’t know about:
- Helps with hair loss – that’s right, garlic contains high levels of allicin, a sulfur compound, which was found to help treat hair loss. Chop up some sliced cloves or infuse it with some oil and massage into your scalp.
- Helps fight skin blemishes/acne – Due to garlic’s antioxidant and anti-bacterial properties, it is an effective, topical treatment when placed on a blemish (use sliced cloves).
- Helps fight colds – With all of the antioxidants found in garlic, it also helps boost your immune system. Try eating more garlic when feeling under the weather. Make garlic tea or eat it raw to help give your immune system that extra kick it needs this time of year.
- Helps fight joint pain – Garlic has anti-inflammatory properties to help ease any inflammatory issues you may be experiencing.
- Helps with Athlete’s Foot – Garlic also has anti-fungal properties. Soak your feet in a warm bath of water and crushed garlic to provide a natural, inexpensive way to treat this fungus.
- Helps with digestion - Steeping some garlic to make a garlic tea is a great way to ease the stomach after a meal.
This is just a small list of all the amazing benefits that garlic has to offer. Make sure to share this with your friends and family to educate them about this amazing root.
Do you have a whole bunch of garlic and don’t know what to do with it? If you’ve got a bunch of garlic cloves braided together, try making my favorite oil, Mojo de Ajo. For our non-Spanish speakers, this is also known as garlic-infused oil.
Mojo de Ajo
In the past 18 months, I have fallen in love with a chef from Chicago that makes amazing Mexican foods – Rick Bayless. This is his recipe for Mojo de Ajo that I originally saw on his show, “Mexico: One Plate at a Time.”
- 4 heads garlic
- 2 cups olive oil
- 1 teaspon salt
- ½ cup fresh lime juice
Heat the oven to 325 degrees
Break the heads of garlic apart, peel the cloves, and place at the bottom of a 9” x 9” pan. Mash the garlic slightly with either a fork or potatoe masher to release some of the aroma.
Cover the garlic with the oil to ensure all of the garlic is submerged. Bake in the oven for 45-55 minutes. Add lime juice into the mixture and put back in the oven for about another 20 minutes.
After letting the oil mixture sit for 15 minutes to cool down, use the masher or large fork to break down the garlic into a course puree. Pour mixture into a re-useable, glass container for storage that will last a few months in the refrigerator.
Use the oil in your normal cooking or add to any recipe to give a nice, roasted garlic taste.
Post by Peter Coulter