If you look at what’s trending on Instagram when it comes to health-related topics, you tend to see a lot of hashtags that have to do with natural cures, food for health, healthy eating as medicine and holistic health. There’s a big trend towards looking for more natural, clean, plant-based options for healthy living, including supplements. A relative newcomer on the scene is black garlic. Garlic pills and capsules were all the rage a few years ago, but the taste and smell turned people off, which is why black garlic is surging in popularity. Learn more about the health benefits of black garlic that you need to know.

Black garlic is just garlic, only different

People think black garlic is some exotic new breed of garlic but that’s not true. Black garlic is simply white garlic following a fermentation process under controlled heat and humidity. This process results in a soft, jelly-like texture that is free from odor and has a taste like figs. From a nutritional point of view, black garlic has a similar content of allicin, the active ingredient in white garlic that imparts its benefits. Black garlic is rich in amino acids and has almost double the amounts of antioxidants when compared to white garlic. See?  It’s the same, only different!

What makes black garlic unique?

While black garlic contains many of the same healthy attributes as white garlic, it also contains additional unique characteristics that give it an extra healthy boost. Black garlic contains a compound called S-Allycysteine (SAC) in high concentrations. S-Allylcysteine has been shown to assist with the absorption of allicin. This makes black garlic more effective than white garlic for all the benefits mentioned above and additionally it is well-tolerated by the digestive system.

What are the health benefits of black garlic?

Good question! As we mentioned in a previous article, black garlic contains antioxidants, may boost heart health, preserves cognitive function, may stabilize blood sugar, increases immunity, and overall fights infection. It has anticancer and antioxidant properties and has a powerful effect on stimulating the body’s resistance to illness or infection. It can reduce your blood pressure and, according to a recent study, it can help with weight control as well, according to an article by Dr. Oz. Garlic is also an anti-fungal and may help with candida overgrowth, as can turmeric. Recent studies have found that black garlic is an excellent way to lower LDL cholesterol which is the bad cholesterol. Researchers have found that black garlic contains other vitamins and minerals such as magnesium, calcium, selenium and the Vitamins B-6 and C, all important vitamins and minerals for the body. Studies are being conducted to find out how effective black garlic is at battling chronic disease.  Researchers believe that the high levels of antioxidants with offer protection to the free radicals that cause the damage.  Free radicals damage the cells and help cause heart disease, rheumatoid arthritis, Alzheimer’s and other chronic diseases. 

Options for incorporating black garlic into your diet

If you want to try and consume it, Fitness Magazine offers some tips:

  • On toast: Top it with an egg for an extra protein kick.
  • With cheese: Put a few bulbs on a charcuterie or cheese plate for your next party.
  • In a burger: Chop up some bulbs and mix in with ground meat or beans and spices to make burgers.
  • With hummus: Black garlic is a natural fit for hummus. Try it with creamy white beans.

Not everyone is a fan of garlic, even the sweeter, milder flavor that black garlic offers. If that’s the case, there are black garlic supplements out there that you should try but as with any supplement, do your homework; not all supplements are made the same! Look for one with liposomal delivery so you’re getting optimal absorption. Go for supplements made in the USA. Ideally, if you can find a supplement that incorporates the healthy attributes of black garlic with other complementary ingredients like black peppercorns, black cumin and black radish, you’ll get even more health benefits.

Understanding the health benefits of black garlic that you need to know and options for how you can incorporate it into your diet may give a real boost to your healthy lifestyle. Give it a try today!