Garlic and Herbal Medicine

Objectives: a. Define and explain the importance of herbal medicine b. Describe the physical characteristics, how it is planted and grown, its uses, and the chemicals/content of garlic c. Describe the functions of garlic as a herbal medicine d. Demonstrate how to prepare garlic for medicinal use e. Identify the different herbal medicines and the advantages and disadvantages of using them Herbal medicine is using of plant’s seeds, berries, roots, leaves, bark, or flowers for medicinal purposes as it is defined.

It is also called botanical medicine or phytomedicine. In our world today, the use of prescription drugs are now more common than the use of the traditional herbal medicine. But because of the increasing cost of drugs, the Department of Health advocates the use of locally available medicine. In the Philippines, there are ten (10) herbal plants that have been found to be effective in the treatment of common ailments. These herbal plants are the Lagundi, Yerba (Hierba) Buena, Sambong, Tsaang Gubat, Niyug-Niyogan, Bayabas/Guava, Akapulko, Pansit-pansitan, Ampalaya and Bawang/Garlic.

Bawang/Garlic (Allium Sativum) is described as a plant with linear and flat leaves grouped together at the end of a long stalk. And this stalk rises from an underground bulb that is broadly ovoid, 2 to 4 cm in diameter, made up of bulblets commonly called cloves. Garlic is grown easily just by planting individual cloves in the ground. Garlic plants can be grown close together, leaving enough room for the bulbs to mature and they can be also grown in containers providing sufficient depth.

As we all know, garlic is popular for its culinary purposes as a seasoning or as a condiment and we are also aware of its medicinal purposes such as for hypertension, toothache and for the lowering of cholesterol levels in blood. And according to some research, garlic is now used to prevent certain types of cancers, including stomach and colon cancers. Chemical contents of garlic are at least 33 sulfur compounds like aliin, allicin, ajoene, allylpropl, diallyl, trisulfide, sallylcysteine, vinyldithiines, S-allylmercaptocystein, and others.

Besides these sulfur compounds which are responsible for its pungent odor and many of its medicinal effects, it also contains 17 amino acids and minerals such as selenium and enzymes like allinase, peroxidases, myrosinase, and etc. Preparation: May be fried, roasted, soaked, or blanched. * Blanching garlic * Put desired amount of garlic in a pot and cover with water * Bring water to a boil for 5 minutes * Strain garlic * Frying garlic * Heat the oil in the frying pan * Put the sliced garlic * Fry gently for about a minute or when it turned golden brown * Roasting garlic Preheat the oven to 400Β°F * Peel away the outer layers of the garlic bulb skin, leaving the skins of the individual cloves intact. Using a knife, cut off 1/4 to a 1/2 inch of the top of cloves, exposing the individual cloves of garlic * Place the garlic heads in a baking pan or muffin pans. Drizzle a couple teaspoons of olive oil over each head. Cover with aluminum foil. Bake at 400Β°F for 30-35 minutes, or until the cloves feel soft when pressed * Soaking garlic * Soak fresh , whole garlic cloves in vinegar for 30 minutes Take two pieces three times a day after meals

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