Health Benefits of

garlic

Frankincense is an aromatic resin derived from the trees of Boswellia species commonly found in Indian, African, and Middle Eastern regions. The healing properties of this resin have been employed for the treatment of different health ailments in ancient Chinese and Ayurvedic medicine. [1]The topical benefits of frankincense are listed down below.  

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Garlic and Wound Healing

Skin conditions and invasive procedures lead to the formation of a skin wound. Garlic is known for promoting wound healing and reducing excessive scarring. The angiogenic property of allicin promotes blood flow and facilitates the process of healing. The antibacterial property of allicin also prevents the onset of wound infections. Although garlic induces the proliferation of fibroblasts, garlic does not promote excess production of extracellular matrix, thus, preventing the formation of hypertrophic scars. Garlic also accelerates wound contraction and reepithelization. [2]

Antioxidant Property of Garlic

Allicin of garlic has antioxidant properties that aid in neutralizing reactive oxygen species, thus, protecting the tissues from oxidative stress. Garlic also contains ascorbic acid or vitamin C that has antioxidant properties to help scavenge the free radicals. [3]

Garlic for Alopecia Areata

Alopecia areata is a form of hair loss condition characterized by the destruction of hair follicles by the body's immune system. Garlic facilitates the absorption of minoxidil in the scalp for the treatment of hair loss. In presence of garlic, minoxidil treatment results in more effective outcomes. [4]

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Figure 2 The graph demonstrates the effect of allicin on different strains of Staphylococcus aureus and the diameter of the zone of inhibition. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/15250668/ 

Antibacterial Activity of Garlic

The primary antibacterial agent found in garlic is allicin. As compared to antibiotics that are responsible for causing bacterial resistance, garlic acts against bacterial species without any adverse effects. Allicin proves to be beneficial for treating methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA). The thiosulphinate group of allicin hinders the activity of the bacterial enzyme and impairs DNA formation and protein synthesis. [5]

Anticancer Property of Garlic

Garlic contains an organosulfide compound called diallyl sulfide. Diallyl sulfide has antimutagenic and anticarcinogenic properties that enable this compound to reduce the risk of skin cancer. This compound promotes the regulation of the cell cycle and inhibits the proliferation of tumor cells. Moreover, diallyl sulfide induces apoptosis of cancerous cells to prevent skin cancer. [6]

Garlic Repels Haematophagous Arthropods

Certain arthropods feed on human blood and also serve as vectors for transmitting several diseases. Garlic has anti-feeding properties that enable topical garlic application to repel these hematophagous arthropods. Moreover, this also reduces the risk of transmission of diseases that are associated with these arthropods. [7]

Anti-Aging Effects of Garlic

Garlic is composed of essential chemicals including caffeic acid, cysteine, and uracil. These chemicals derived from garlic, suppress the gene expression and production of matrix metalloproteinase, enzymes that are responsible for the degradation of the matrix in the dermis of the skin. This protects the skin from UV-induced damage and also reduces the visible signs of aging such as fine lines and wrinkles. [8]

 Antioxidant and Anti-Inflammatory Properties of Garlic

Cysteine and uracil of garlic suppress the activity of two enzymes that are involved in the inflammatory processes. These enzymes are cyclooxygenase-2 and nitric oxide synthase. Inhibition of these enzymes leads to a decrease in the production of inflammatory mediators. Garlic also neutralizes the free radicals and protects the skin from oxidative stress. [8]