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Surprising Health Benefits of Garlic

Although garlic is a member of the lily family, it’s known more as a spice or vegetable that adds flavor to many recipes. Flavor aside, garlic also comes with some surprising health benefits. As reported by The World’s Healthiest Foods, its medicinal properties range from cardioprotective benefits to iron metabolism to having the ability to regulate the number of fat cells in your body.

It doesn’t matter what form you use it in: Fresh garlic has nutritional benefits superior to that of any kind of processing, such as minced and refrigerated, or dried in flakes. It’s an excellent source of manganese essential enzymes and antioxidants that perform all kinds of amazing feats in the body, including the healthy formation of bones and connective tissues, bone metabolism, calcium absorption and proper thyroid function.

Garlic also contains 17 percent of the daily value in vitamin B6, and 15 percent in vitamin C, while allocating good amounts of calcium, phosphorus, and selenium. When it comes to health conditions, garlic inhibits cholesterol accumulation, reduces risk for heart attack and stroke and may even have protective effects against cancer.

In fact, it reacts so fast with dangerous free radicals in your body that I’ve put garlic on my list of the top seven foods that can slow your aging. Garlic is also known for its powerful antibacterial and antiviral properties and can even ward off antibiotic-resistant superbugs. Like broccoli, garlic sprouts might be even healthier for you. And black garlic, which is basically fermented garlic, may be even healthier than any of the other forms.