Garlic health benefits for men might surprise you. We all know that garlic tastes good, but this member of the lily family also packs in the nutritional benefits for men. It is a safe and inexpensive way to eat well to be well, and it is well documented that people have been eating garlic for its many health benefits for thousands of years. Here is what you need to know about garlic benefits for men.
Garlic does more than keep vampires away—the popular herb also contains allium compounds that enhance the activity of immune system cells designed to fight cancer. These compounds, called diallyl sultides, may block carcinogens from getting into cells and also slow the development of tumors.
People who regularly eat raw or cooked garlic may enjoy about half the risk of stomach cancer and two-thirds the risk of colorectal cancer when compared with people who eat little or no garlic, according to a study in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition.
A number of subsequent studies in both the laboratory and in animals have also indicated that garlic components have cancer-fighting properties. In a February 2012 study from China, researchers found evidence that a compound derived from garlic called S-allyl cysteine showed some anticancer effects against human prostate cancer cells in the laboratory. Garlic is a versatile herb that can easily be incorporated into a cancer-fighting diet.
Garlic Health Benefits
1. Garlic as an Aphrodisiac
Garlic might help your sex life; just make sure your partner eats some too! No, really, garlic has long been considered a natural Viagra, thanks to its ability to boost blood flow.
The key is allicin, the active ingredient in garlic that has been found to dilate the tiny arteries and capillaries in the penis (making it hard for an erection), as well as muscle tissue (making it easier for you to sustain one).
So cook up a nice garlicky romantic Italian meal and see what unfolds.
2. Garlic and Heart Health
It is not just good for your love life, but for your real heart health as well. Garlic fights heart disease, decreases blood pressure, and prevents blood clots. It has been said to lower cholesterol as well.
Garlic helps lower blood pressure and prevent strokes and heart attacks. This nutrition-packed spice can help ward off heart disease too. By preventing plaque buildup in the arteries, garlic is an excellent supplement for heart health. This can help keep your blood pressure stable and prevent you from developing hardening of the arteries which can cause heart attacks.
3. Prostate Health
Prostate enlargement affects many men as they age, but a diet high in garlic and onions lowers the risk of benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH). One study found that men who ate garlic had a 28% lower risk of BPH compared to men who never ate garlic. Onions had an even bigger effect on preventing BPH.
In another study, allicin (the active ingredient in garlic) was given to rats that had enlarged prostates due to testosterone-induced hormonal changes. The prostate enlargement usually occurred after 10 weeks of testosterone treatment in the rats, but in rats receiving allicin, the enlargement took up to 35 weeks to occur.
It is therefore believed that allicin may stop testosterone from converting into its more potent form dihydrotestosterone (DHT), which induces prostate enlargement in some men.
4. Garlic’s Antioxidant, Antibacterial, and Antiviral Properties
Garlic contains allicin, which has many positive effects as an antioxidant, trapping free radicals, and it also helps to rid the body of toxins, improving liver function. Allicin in garlic contains antibacterial and antiviral properties. Studies have shown that people who eat garlic are less likely to get sick.
If you do catch a cold, chewing and swallowing a small amount of fresh, raw garlic helps break up nasal congestion. You can also try it for a sore throat by chewing on a clove or two of fresh garlic.
5. Treating Athlete’s Foot with Garlic
The enzymes in garlic can even help with funguses such as athlete’s foot. Crush up two to four cloves of fresh garlic and add to warm water to create a footbath in a container large enough to fit your feet. Add a small amount of rubbing alcohol—soak feet for 30 minutes.
You can also mince a few cloves of garlic and cover them with a small amount of olive oil. Cover and let sit for about three days, shaking a few times per day. Using a cotton ball, apply the oil to the affected areas twice a day until the athlete’s foot clears.
6. Garlic and Cancer Prevention
The selenium found in garlic helps in preventing many kinds of cancer that commonly affect men, including cancer of the prostate, bladder, colon, rectum, lung, and stomach.
For instance, garlic also reduces the risk of developing stomach cancer by stimulating the enzymes that detoxify carcinogens in the digestive tract. It boosts immunity to attack mutated cells and can even destroy cancerous ones.
Research has shown that animals whose diets are supplemented with garlic extract have a reduction in cancer cells by up to 40%.1 A study performed in Malaysia found that the concentration of selenium, zinc and vitamin A was higher for those consuming garlic.
After a survey of the global research, the American Institute for Cancer Research (AICR), found that eating garlic frequently lowers the risk of colorectal cancers.
7. Chemical-Free Pesticide
If you are avoiding chemical pesticides, try using garlic to repel fleas and mosquitoes. Garlic is natural and is not associated with cancer and other health problems that come from chemical exposure.
The strategy is simple: crush some garlic and place the cloves around your home. The smell of the crushed garlic will keep fleas, mosquitoes, ants and other pests from entering or living in your house.
When you crush a clove of garlic on any surface it leaves an oil that can last for a few days. It’s that oil that creates the smell and keeps pests at bay.
Garlic Benefits for Men
To get the most health benefits for men from your garlic, always eat or use fresh garlic that shows no signs of decay or sprouting. Store in a cool, dry, dark place. Most of the benefit is gotten from eating raw fresh garlic. Garlic supplements remove the odor if you find it bothersome.
Bastyr Center for Natural Health. Add Onions and Garlic for a Healthy Prostate. Urology 2007;70:672–6. garlic health benefits for men
Antony ML, Singh SV. Molecular mechanisms and targets of cancer chemoprevention by garlic-derived bioactive compound diallyl trisulfide. Indian J Exp Biol 2011 Nov; 49(11): 805-16
Fleischauer AT et al. Garlic consumption and cancer prevention: meta-analyses of colorectal and stomach cancers. Am J Clin Nutr 2000 Oct; 72(4): 1047-52
Lee JE et al. Induction of apoptosis with diallyl disulfide in AGS gastric cancer cell line. J Korean Surg Soc 2011 Aug; 81(2): 85-95
Liu Z et al. S-allyl cysteine induces cell cycle arrest and apoptosis in androgen-independent human prostate cancer cells. Mol Med Report 2012 Feb; 5(2): 439-43
Wang X et al. Aged black garlic extract induces inhibition of gastric cancer cell growth in vitro and in vivo. Mol Med Report 2012 Jan; 5(1): 66-72