garlic nutrition facts calories and health benefits

Since time immemorial, garlic recognized as a prized herb in almost all the cultures for its medicinal properties as well as culinary uses. This wonderful herbal plant, grown for its underground root or bulb, contains numerous health promoting phytonutrients that has proven benefits against coronary artery diseases, infections, and cancers.

The herb plant belongs to the family of Alliaceae, in the genus, Allium; and scientifically known as Allium sativum. It is believed to be originating in the mountainous Central Asian region, from where it spread all over the temperate and subtropical regions the world.

Strong flavored, garlic cloves contain many unique phytonutrients, minerals, vitamins, and antioxidants that have proven health benefits. Total measured antioxidant strength (ORAC value) is 5346 ┬Ámol TE/100 g.

Its bulbs contain organic thiosulfinate compounds such as diallyl disulfide, diallyl trisulfide and allyl propyl disulfide. Upon disruption of the bulb (while crushing, cutting, etc.), these compounds convert into allicin through an enzymatic reaction.

Laboratory studies show that allicin reduces cholesterol production by inhibiting the HMG-CoA reductase enzyme within the liver cells.