Natural Medicine Cabinet: Garlic for Athlete’s Foot, Colds and Cancer

| 5/19/2010 1:36:32 PM

Garlic’s uses cover many aspects of daily life. Its pungent aroma and flavor make it a favorite cooking ingredient, and its health benefits have made it a cure-all for various ailments for centuries. Garlic also played an important role historically in society as it was used to ward off the plague (and vampires).

In medicinal use, garlic (Allium sativum) has been cultivated and used for about 5,000 years by ancient cultures to treat various health problems ranging from fevers to diseases. Today we know that garlic possesses antifungal, antibacterial, antiviral and anticarcinogenic properties, to name a few. These properties make garlic useful for treating a number of modern health problems.

bunches of garlic cloves
Garlic can be used to treat athlete's foot, colds, infections and even prevent cancer. Photo By David Goehring/Courtesy Flickr 

Athlete’s Foot: Because garlic is antifungal, it can help clear up athlete’s foot, a common foot infection caused by a fungus that grows on the skin. suggests boiling several cloves of garlic in hot water, letting it cool to a comfortable temperature and then soaking your feet in the garlic water.

Colds/Infections: Garlic’s antibacterial and antiviral properties make it beneficial for preventing and treating colds and infections. A 2001 study found that adults who took garlic supplements came down with fewer cases of the cold than those who didn’t take garlic. Scientists believe that the allicin in garlic helps the body resist viral and bacterial infections by blocking certain enzymes.

Cancer: The National Cancer Institute reports that population studies have shown that eating garlic can reduce the risk for developing certain types of cancer, such as stomach, intestinal, colon, breast and prostate cancer, to name a few. Few clinical trials have been conducted on the matter, so it’s unclear whether or not consuming garlic really can reduce the risk of cancer, but the institute believes that if garlic does have medicinal value, it comes from its antibacterial properties and its ability to block the formation of cancer-causing substances and enhance DNA repair.

Subscribe today and save 58%

Subscribe to Mother Earth Living !

Mother Earth LivingWelcome to Mother Earth Living, the authority on green lifestyle and design. Each issue of Mother Earth Living features advice to create naturally healthy and nontoxic homes for yourself and your loved ones. With Mother Earth Living by your side, you’ll discover all the best and latest information you want on choosing natural remedies and practicing preventive medicine; cooking with a nutritious and whole-food focus; creating a nontoxic home; and gardening for food, wellness and enjoyment. Subscribe to Mother Earth Living today to get inspired on the art of living wisely and living well.

Save Money & a Few Trees!

Pay now with a credit card and take advantage of our earth-friendly automatic renewal savings plan. You’ll save an additional $5 and get six issues of Mother Earth Living for just $19.95! (Offer valid only in the U.S.)

Or, choose Bill Me and pay just $24.95.

Facebook Pinterest Instagram YouTube Twitter

Free Product Information Classifieds

click me