Heart Disease Home > Benefits of Garlic

There are supposedly several beneficial uses of garlic. Research indicates that it may be effective at slowing down the progression of atherosclerosis, but it is not known how effective garlic is for lowering cholesterol or blood pressure. Also, benefits may include reducing the risk of stomach cancer and colon cancer, as well as treating certain fungal skin infections.

Benefits of Garlic: An Overview

Garlic seems to provide a wide variety of health benefits. However, many of the studies that suggested garlic is beneficial were based on the dietary intake of garlic (through food, not through supplements). It is not entirely clear whether supplements provide the same benefits as eating garlic or if certain types of supplements are better than others.
Garlic is claimed to be useful for just about everything. Some of the benefits include:
Benefits for the Heart
Most people use garlic for heart health. In particular, it is often used for treating high cholesterol, high blood pressure, and heart disease. Although research suggests that garlic may slow down the progression of atherosclerosis (hardening of the arteries), it probably does not help much with lowering cholesterol. It is also not clear whether garlic helps to lower blood pressure (see Does Garlic Work? for more information).
Can Garlic Prevent Cancer?
Some studies suggest that a high dietary intake of garlic may decrease the risk of stomach cancer or colon cancer. However, garlic supplements do not seem to provide the same benefit. There is not enough evidence to suggest that garlic can help prevent other types of cancer.
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Last reviewed by: Kristi Monson, PharmD;
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