Many years ago, I lived in Seoul, South Korea working as an English teacher. Understandably, I would miss the taste of home and would occasionally frequent a restaurant named Mad for Garlic, which specialized in western cuisine. All these years later, the name of this restaurant still stays with me, as it perfectly encapsulates how I feel about this underutilized, yet profound herb.
Beneath the layers of pungency and heat, you will find an herb from which almost every person on the planet can derive benefits. As with other members of the Allium family, garlic is a broad spectrum anti-microbial, fighting against viruses, bacteria, fungi and protozoa. Combine this with its powerful decongestant and expectorant properties, you have a steadfast winter ally.
If the remarkable list of anti-microbial properties has not won you over, perhaps its ability to support cardiovascular health will! Garlic supports the heart muscle, helps to lower blood pressure and lipid levels and improves the tone of the entire cardiovascular system.
In addition to all of this, garlic also boasts impressive anti-inflammatory, digestive, anti-spasmodic and even anti-cancer properties.
Garlic is the perfect crop for new gardeners, those with small spaces and folks who frequent their cottage in the summer months. Planted in the fall and quite literally forgotten about all winter long, garlic requires very little work other than harvesting the scapes and the bulbs later in the summer. So little work with such an impressive outcome is surely worth the investment!
Correne Omland, Clinical Western Herbalist Spiraea Herbal Clinic + Apothecary