Garlic – The Cancer Prevention Super Star


According to the National Cancer Institute, several population studies have revealed a link between increased intake of garlic and reduced risk of certain cancers, including breast, stomach, colon, esophagus and pancreas cancers.



According to the National Cancer Institute, several population studies have revealed a link between increased intake of garlic and reduced risk of certain cancers, including breast, stomach, colon, esophagus and pancreas cancers.

How Garlic Acts to Prevent Cancer
– The protective effects from garlic are thanks to garlic’s strong antibacterial properties, according to Ruddock PS, Liao M and Foster BC’s Phytotherapy Research
– Garlic has an ability to reduce cell production or induce cell death – Asian Pacific Journal of Cancer Prevention 2005
– Garlic’s ability to stop the formation of cancer-causing substances, reported by Shenoy NR and Choughuley AS in Cancer Letters 1992
– Garlic’s ability to halt the activation of cancer-causing substances, as published in the Advances in Experimental Medicine and Biology 2001
– Garlic enhances DNA repair, as found in Genetika 2002

Cancer Prevention Study Results
1. Interestingly, an analysis of data from seven population studies published in the Journal of Nutrition 2001 – A Critical Review Of The Epidemiologic Literature revealed that the more raw and cooked garlic eaten, the lower the risk of stomach and colorectal cancer

2. Similarly, the European Prospective Investigation into Cancer and Nutrition (EPIC) is an ongoing multinational study of men and women from 10 different countries, considering the effects of nutrition on cancer. In the study, higher consumption of garlic is linked to reduced risk of intestinal cancer

3. The Iowa Women’s Study – a large study investigating whether diet, body fat distribution and other risk factors are related to cancer incidence in older women – revealed that women who ate the highest amounts of garlic had a 50% lower risk of cancer of the distal colon (the last part of the left descending colon) compared with women who had the lowest level of garlic consumption

4. In another study published in the Asian Pacific Journal of Cancer Prevention, the consumption of vegetables containing allium (especially garlic and onions), was linked to a reduced risk of stomach cancer

5. The Journal of the National Cancer Institute reveals that a greater intake of allium vegetables (more than 10 g per day vs. less than 2.2 g per day), specifically garlic and scallions, was related to an approximated 50% decline in the risk of prostate cancer

6. Evidence also suggests that multiplying the amount of garlic you eat may reduce pancreatic cancer risk. A study conducted in the San Francisco Bay area found that pancreatic cancer risk was 54% less in people who ate larger amounts of garlic compared with those who ate lower amounts, as published in Cancer Epidemiology Biomarkers & Prevention

7. In addition, the European Journal of Epidemiology references a study in France which found that increased garlic consumption was associated with a statistically significant reduction in breast cancer risk. After considering total calorie intake and other established risk factors, breast cancer risk was reduced in those consuming greater amounts of fibre, garlic, and onions

How much garlic for cancer prevention?
Although the National Cancer Institute (part of the National Institutes of Health), does not recommend any dietary supplement for the prevention of cancer, it recognises garlic as one of several vegetables with potential anti-cancer properties.

Because all garlic preparations are not the same, it is tricky to determine the exact amount of garlic that may be needed to reduce cancer risk. Furthermore, the active compounds present in garlic may lose their effectiveness with time, handling, and processing.

The World Health Organization’s (WHO) guidelines for general health promotion in adults is a daily dose of 2g to 5g of fresh, crushed garlic (roughly one clove), 0.4g to 1.2g of dried garlic powder, 2mg to 5mg of garlic oil, 300mg to 1,000mg of garlic extract or other formulations that are equal to 2mg to 5mg of allicin.

How to Get the Garlic Goodness
The best way to maximise garlic’s benefits is to simply eat it crushed raw as, like most vegetables, the cooking process will decrease nutrients and antioxidants.

It is important to remember that the health benefits of garlic – cooked or raw are only experienced when the clove has been crushed – this is when the super fighter Allicin is released.

· Spread your freshly crushed garlic on bread with honey
· Add chopped raw garlic into your daily salads
· Crush a garlic clove or cut it into chunks, let is stand for 7 – 10 minutes to let the allicin develop then swallow it with water.
· Add freshly crushed garlic to a glass of hot water with ginger, lemon and honey for a refreshing tea

Concerned about whiffy garlic breath? Fear not! Garlic odour fighting capsules have launched in South Africa. They are available at Dis-Chem Pharmacies, Pick ‘n Pay Pharmacies and select independent pharmacies.


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