Garlic (Allium Sativum) is included in the Afflum genus. Garlic grows in a clump and stand up to as high as 30 -75 cm, has a pseudo-stem formed from the stem-leaf midrib and produces the bulbs in layers. It has strands of ribbon-like leaves with flattened and elongated shape. Garlic root consists of tiny fibers in high amount. Each garlic bulb consists of a number of clove garlic and they are wrapped in a thin and white skin.
We know well that its smell sometimes makes people avoid mixing garlic in their food seasoning. However, garlic has its own popularity among the Asia cuisines like Indonesia, China, Japan and Korea. There, garlic often becomes the main seasoning for cooking. But actually, talking about garlic is not only talking about food and cooking, but also about health and medicine.
Garlic has been used as medicine for thousand years. Even in 3000 years BC, the Chinese poet has been tested and write the benefits of garlic! The ancient Greek Aristotle also has being tested the level of garlic in the 335 BC to ber used as a treatment.
There is more data that revealed in the ancient Egypt written that garlic was given to the workers who built the pyramids to keep them strong and healthy. The Russians also made garlic as a “substitute antibiotic” and is known as “Russian penicillin” because it is believed containing 1/10 good penicillin.
Garlic contains a good compound, called Alil, which is nutritious as medicine. Alil is able to combat degenerative diseases and enable the growth of new cells. In addition, there is also Aliin compound. When the garlic is crushed, the Aliin which is actually not smelly, will decompose. With alinase enzyme help, aliin splits into allicin, ammonia, and pyruvateacid. It produces pungent odor because allicin contains of sulfur. Its special aroma becomes more stinging when the sulfur in the ammonia is released into the air, because ammonia is a volatile compound. The allicin compounds destroy the formation of blood clots in the arteries, reducing the symptoms of diabetes and reduces blood pressure.
The benefits of garlic are: It can treat Hypertension, Asthma, Cough, Cold, headache, jaundice, shortness of breath, hemorrhoid, constipation, bruise, abscess, wound due to sharp objects, insect bites, worms, and trouble sleeping (insomnia).
As a diabetes medicine, garlic can be consumed every day after breakfast, lunch and dinner. Each usage is a two or three cloves after meal. It can be made with soy sauce, sliced red onion and chilies when you have rice. It could also be crushed and brewed with as many as half a glass of hot water and then blended or juiced.
Then, how to choose a good garlic? Whatever the variety you buy, choose the smooth and dry skin of bulbs. The good bulbs has strong aroma. In the dry state, garlic can be retained for many months, as long as you place it in a dry and cool place. Do not store it in refrigerator because it will grow leaves. If the weather is too hot, the garlic will quickly shrink.