Garlic, an Aphrodisiac

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garlic aphrodisiac

Garlic (Allium sativum) is a perennial plant in the family Alliaceae and genus Allium, closely related to the onion, shallot, and leek. It grows in the wild in areas where it has become naturalised, but is thought to have originally arisen in cultivation, probably descended from the species Allium longicuspis, which grows wild in south-western Asia. Garlic has been used throughout all of recorded history for both culinary and medicinal purposes.

Regarding its medicinal use, garlic proves to be one outstanding bulb. It prevents and fights common cold; diminishes platelet aggregation; lowers LDL-C (“low density lipoprotein” --- carries cholesterol); treats hyperlipidaemia; significantly inhibits atherosclerosis via its aged extract “kyolic”; protects and keeps the elastic properties of elderly people’s aortas; prevents complications by diabetes mellitus; has cancer-fighting properties; treats intestinal worms and other internal parasites; and remedies chest problems, digestive disorders, and fungal infections. Pretty numerous, eh? Thus, Galen eulogizes it as the "rustic's theriac" (cure-all).

Sexual stimulant

In the times of Homer, Greeks ate garlic daily - with bread, as a condiment, or added to salads. It was the main ingredient in a garlic paste (a forerunner of today’s skordalia?) containing cheese, garlic, eggs, honey, and oil. Then, between the forth and first centuries B.C.E. many medical doctors, including Galen, the one stated earlier, and Hippocrates agreed that ingesting garlic would contribute to sexual potency. Fifteen centuries later Maimonides added his voice to this bit of folk wisdom. Although this theory is laughed at by most contemporary medical researchers, garlic remains the most popular aphrodisiac of modern day Greeks, especially those who inhabit the Ionian Islands. On Corfu, for example, widowers who marry are feted before the wedding with an assortment of dishes, all of which are heavily seasoned with garlic. There is even a priest living in the village of Kourkabedes who promises barren couples that chewing six raw heads of garlic each day will produce a child for them.

One research has also proven that garlic supplementation in rats along with a high protein diet has been shown to boost testosterone levels (of the rats, that is).

Basically, since it improves blood circulation and shows antibiotic properties, it has been generally accepted to be a potent aphrodisiac; but now it appears that an enzyme called nitric oxide synthase (NOS) is primarily responsible for the mechanism of erection. Studies have recently shown that garlic in certain forms can stimulate the production of NOS particularly in individuals who have low levels of this enzyme.

1 comment :

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