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Dr. Andrew Rynne
MD
Dr. Andrew Rynne

Family Physician

Exp 50 years

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Article Home Diet and Fitness Action of garlic in high blood pressure and high cholesterol

Action of garlic in high blood pressure and high cholesterol

How garlic acts to reduce blood pressure and cholesterol

Garlic (allium sativum) holds a unique position in history and was recognized for its therapeutic potential. Routine use of garlic in food or as dietary supplement like aged garlic extract, powder or oil has been found to be of use in cardiovascular health conditions like hypertension (high blood pressure), diabaetes and cholesterol. It has been reported to have a beneficial effect on several cardiovascular risk parameters including plasma lipoproteins and postprandial lipemia.  

Components of garlic preparations can scavenge free radicals and protect membranes from damage and maintain cell integrity. It also provides cardiovascular protection mediated by lowering of cholesterol, blood pressure, anti-platelet activities and thromboxane formation thus providing protection against atherosclerosis and associated disorders.

Several mechanisms have been reviewed in this context like activation of detoxification phase I and II enzymes, reactive oxygen species (ROS) generation and reducing DNA damage etc. The anti-hypertensive action has been attributed to its selenium and germanium content and anti-lipidemic action has been attributed to its sulfur containing compounds like Diallyl disulfide and allicin. 

Garlic has shown to demonstrate variable anti-hypertensive and lipid lowering effects in patients with mild to moderate hypertension with obesity.