Top Five Health Benefits of Garlic

 

health benefits garlic

Garlic is is one of the most popular spices in the world. Not only is it tasty, but the “stinking rose”, as it’s affectionately known also has many health benefits for the human body.

As the saying goes, “A clove of garlic a day keeps the doctor away”.  Of course, since my husband hates garlic, it would also, unfortunately, keep him away.  So while we might not want to eat quite THAT much garlic on a daily basis, there are many reasons why we should include garlic in our recipes regularly.

What are the main components of garlic?

  • Amino acids
  • Minerals:  Mainly manganese, potassium, copper, phosporous
  • Vitamins: Mainly B6 and Vitamin C
  • Allicin
  • Quercetin
  • Essential Oil
  • Sugars

Top Five Health Benefits of Garlic

  1. Garlic supplementation is known to boost the function of the immune system.
    In a study published in Advances in Therapy, researchers found that a daily garlic supplement reduced the number of colds by 63% compared with placebo.
    The average length of cold symptoms was also reduced by 70%, from 5 days in placebo to just 1.5 days in the garlic group.
  2. For those with high cholesterol, garlic supplementation appears to reduce total and/or LDL cholesterol by about 10-15%.
  3. Fresh garlic is thought to play a role in preventing food poisoning by killing bacteria like E. coli, Salmonella enteritidis, etc.
  4. The chemical ajoene found in garlic may help treat fungal skin infections like ringworm and athlete’s foot.
  5. A recent study showed that less than one clove of garlic a day may cut prostate cancer risk in half, and other research links garlic to a lowered incidence of stomach, colon and possibly breast cancers.

Now that you know some of the incredible health benefits of garlic, check out my Garlic Recipe Roundup.

Common Teenage Suicide Warning Signs

teenage suicide warning signs

Awhile back I talked about the symptoms our son Bud had that led to us finally realizing that he needed emotional help (that story can be found here).

Suffice it to say that one day Bud texted me from school saying, “I might as well kill myself.”  Art and I read that as a suicide threat, so we immediately called the school and took action to make sure Bud was protected.  Later, Bud asked me why we made such a big deal.  “I wasn’t going to kill myself,” he told me.  “I just said I might as well since nothing was going right.”  Huh?  Is that teenage logic?  How am I, as a parent, supposed to know the difference?  Is there a difference?

According to the American Academy of Child & Adolescent Psychiatry:

When a child makes a serious threat it should not be dismissed as just idle talk. Parents, teachers, or other adults should immediately talk with the child. If it is determined that the child is at risk and the child refuses to talk, is argumentative, responds defensively, or continues to express violent or dangerous thoughts or plans, arrangements should be made for an immediate evaluation by a mental health professional with experience evaluating children and adolescents. – AACAP

teenage suicide warning signsIn retrospect, now more than 3 1/2 years later, I believe we did the right thing.  After we called the school, the vice-principal and Bud’s counselor immediately pulled Bud out of class and kept him in a quiet room until we got there.  Bud felt that the treatment was harsh, but I know that the school was looking out for his safety, even if “bedside manners” were not the best.  In addition, if this incident had not occurred, we might never have realized the extent of Bud’s insomnia or depression and he would not have received the help he so badly needed.  I would encourage you, even if your child is a “drama king” to take any threat of harm seriously.

Since I originally wrote this post three years ago, we have had a few more cries for help from Bud, which called for medication adjustments, and therapy or lifestyle changes.  Below is a list of some common warning signs for teenage (and young adult) suicide from Naami.org:

  • Prior Suicide Attempts
  • Talking About or Threatening Suicide
  • Making a Plan
  • Giving Away Prized Possessions
  • Preoccupation with Death
  • Signs of Depression, Hopelessness, Anxiety
  • Increased Drug and/or Alcohol Use

If you notice any of these signs in someone you care about, please, at the very least start a dialogue with that person, or if possible, seek professional help.

For more information, you can visit the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline.

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