How far would you go to lessen the symptoms of a cold or the flu?
It seems this time of year everyone is coming down with something. If it’s not a cold, it’s the flu and if it’s not the flu, it’s a cold. Neither is fun!
Suffering from the cold and flu can make you feel helpless; even the smallest task becomes exhausting. It is a common belief that there is no real “cure” for colds and flu; you simply have to let it run its course. However, I happen to have a few tried and true tricks up my sleeve that actually work, and today I am sharing one of them with you. Garlic is something that may help provide a solution to help reduce the severity and length of those annoying symptoms.
Studies on Garlic’s Effects on Cold and Flu:
There have been studies to try to understand how garlic can affect cold and flu symptoms. One particular study looked at 146 people for three months. The people who used a garlic supplement experienced 24 occurrences of cold symptoms, while the people who did not use the garlic supplement has 65 occurrences. Another story found that people who took garlic supplements were able to recover from cold and flu symptoms faster than those who didn’t.
How Does Garlic Help Stop Cold and Flu Symptoms?
So, what is in garlic that may make it so powerful against the cold and flu? Some researchers believe it is the sulfur compounds and allicins, saponins and amino acid derivatives found in garlic that are responsible for targeting cold and flu symptoms.
However, before running out to buy fresh garlic, keep reading. There are a few things to consider before deciding to give garlic a try:
Make Sure Garlic is Right for You
Do a little more research as to the benefits of garlic against cold and flu symptoms to make sure that it will target those you are actually suffering from. Also, make sure you are not allergic to it because if your body is not suited for garlic, it will obviously do more harm than good.
Garlic Can Have Side Effects
We all know garlic has a distinctive smell. Well, did you know that that smell can give you body odor, indigestion and of course, bad breath? This is due to the presence of the same agents that are responsible for remedying a cold and flu. If you are going to use garlic, accept that the odor is super strong. I only use it when I know I will be home for the day/evening (so as not to offend anyone). 😉
Also, garlic may produce blood-thinning effects, so it’s important to avoid it if you’re taking blood-thinning medications.
Ways to Incorporate Garlic into your Diet:
There are several ways you can incorporate garlic into your diet so it can start helping you fight those cold and flu symptoms.
1. Raw Garlic:
It might be a strong but effective way to help prevent getting sick. To use raw garlic to fight off those pesky bugs, chop up a clove of garlic at the first signs of illness. Let it sit for 10-15 minutes in order for the allicin to form. Allicin is the active component in garlic that fights off bacteria and viruses. You can read more about allicin in this article here. When the 15 minutes is up, I place the crushed garlic on a spoon and swallow it whole while taking a big gulp of water. This keeps you from experiencing the strong taste that you’d get without the water.
2. Add Garlic To Food:
Keep in mind, actually “cooking” garlic destroys the allicin. It can still have AMAZING health benefits when used in cooking, but when incorporating it into your food for infection-fighting benefits, think salsa, homemade dressings, pesto, etc. or crush the garlic first, wait 10-15 minutes, and then add it to the dish you’re cooking. Using garlic in your dishes can turn a drab dinner into something fabulous!
3. Garlic Supplements:
There are various garlic supplements available on the market. If you do not want to cook or consume raw garlic, you can simply use garlic supplements. However, when shopping for a garlic supplement, make sure it boasts of a “high allicin” content on the bottle.
As always, contact me here if you’d like to schedule a free discovery session to discuss your goals.
I’d also love to hear if you use garlic at the first onsight of cold or flu symptoms and if it works for you. Simply leave me a comment below.