High blood pressure is a common condition, but it’s easily avoidable in most cases (1).
Your blood pressure changes constantly throughout the day, reaching higher peaks when you wake up, work out, or when you experience stress.
Factors like inactivity, poor diet, genetics, and chronic stress can cause the blood to flow through blood vessels with more force than what’s considered normal. This extra force puts a strain on the heart and blood vessels and can lead to heart attack, stroke, kidney failure, and death.
Around 76.4 million people in the United States have high blood pressure, and the condition typically affects adults over the age of 65 (2).
If you suffer from high blood pressure, you can control and even reverse your condition by eating better, restricting your consumption of salt, sugar, trans fats, and exercising daily. To get an extra boost, make sure to eat a bit of garlic every day.
1. Use Garlic Instead of Salt
Lowering your sodium intake is an essential part of managing high blood pressure, so grate a bit of dried garlic and use it in lieu of salt.
Garlic contains allicin, an active compound that helps reduce blood pressure and lower cholesterol. One review found that garlic could reduce mean supine systolic blood pressure by 12 mmHg (3).
- 6 garlic cloves
- 2 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil
- Peel and crush the garlic.
- Set aside for 10-15 minutes
- Place them in an oiled skillet over low heat until they get golden.
- Strain off the olive oil, and store for future use. This flavoured oil is great for salads, pasta, or even bread.
- Dry the cloves on a parchment-lined baking sheet for about 2-3 days.
- Store the dried cloves in a sealed jar away from heat and light.
- To use, grate a bit of garlic over your dish and enjoy!
2. Straight & Raw
Allicin can be destroyed when it’s exposed to high heat, so it’s always best to eat garlic raw. Garlic doesn’t just lower blood pressure, it can regulate low blood pressure, improve coronary heart disease, prevent heart attack, reverse reduced blood flow, and fight atherosclerosis (4).
To use garlic medicinally, it’s always best to eat it first thing in the morning on an empty stomach to improve the bioavailability of its active compounds.
- Crush 2 cloves of garlic and let them rest for 15 minutes. Do not eat anything during this period.
- Eat the cloves and wash them down with a tall glass of lemon water. The lemon will help get rid of the garlic smell.
- If the taste is too strong, take a teaspoon of honey to appease your taste buds.
- Repeat daily for a month for visible results.
3. Flavoured Oil
Flavored oil doesn’t just elevate your meals, it also helps prevent the cold and flu, help manage diabetes, relieves osteoarthritis, treat diarrhea, cure headaches, and heal menstrual disorders. If you can’t stomach raw garlic on its own, this oil is perfect for you (5).
- 20 cloves of whole garlic
- A liter (32 ounces) of extra virgin olive oil
- A glass jar
- Peel and crush garlic.
- Set aside for 15 minutes.
- Pour the oil into your jar and cover with oil until it’s flush.
- Let the jar sit in a cool, dark place for 3 weeks.
- Use daily for best results.
4. Garlic Tea
Garlic isn’t exactly what you’d want your afternoon tea to taste like, but its strong flavour is matched by the strength of its properties.
Drink it every day on an empty stomach to ward off rectal, stomach, breast, prostate, lung, and bladder cancer. If you’re eating raw garlic in the morning, drink this tea in the afternoon.
- One garlic clove, peeled
- One cup of water
- A little bit of grated ginger
- 1 tablespoon of freshly squeezed lemon juice
- A tablespoon of honey
- Crush garlic and let it sit.
- Pour water into a small saucepan and boil over medium heat.
- Add garlic, ginger, and honey to boiling water.
- Simmer over low heat for 20 minutes.
- Strain and serve.