Garlic, also known as the “stinking rose,” has a long-held reputation for its healing capacity, much of which is supported by science. This heart-healthy herb is known for being a fighter of high blood pressure, germs, cancer, inflammation, and more.
From warding off everything from vampires to the plague, garlic appears to fend off anything that might threaten ill on the body. But its stench can be a hurdle. The skin and breath exude garlic’s metallic odor. Another challenge: Many of garlic’s key sulfurous constituents, such as allicin, are highly unstable and difficult to reliably capture and deliver in supplement form. Enter aged garlic.
More than 840 peer-reviewed scientific studies about aged garlic extract (AGE) have been published. The product is made by slicing and storing organic garlic cloves in a liquid alcohol solution, then extracting and aging for up to 20 months. The aging process results in a truly odorless product. Even though allicin is not present, different compounds (including water-based sulfur compounds as well as nonsulfur constituents including allixin and saponins) offer health benefits.
AGE Garlic for Immune Health
Garlic—including AGE—offers anti-microbial and immune-stimulating activities that can help prevent or fight a range of infections as well as cancer. Healthy adults who took AGE daily for three months had less severe cold and flu symptoms, missed less school/work, and functioned better than people who took placebos. AGE also shows potential anticancer activity, particularly for gastric and colorectal tumors and cancers.
Support Heart Health with AGE Garlic
Garlic has a modest blood pressure and cholesterol-lowering effect (albeit with mixed study results) for some people, as well as an overall cardiovascular tonic action—reducing inflammation in the blood-vessel lining. In a small, 12-week, double-blind trial of people with uncontrolled hypertension, 1.2 grams daily of aged garlic extract reduced mean blood pressure by 5 points on average. Some people responded better than others, with “responders” (29 of the 50 participants in the garlic group) ranging closer to an 11.5 drop in systolic and 6.3 drop in diastolic blood pressure compared to placebo.
AGE Garlic to Reduce Inflammation
Fifty-one healthy, yet obese, adults recently took part in a double-blind, placebo-controlled, randomized trial. One group took 3.6 grams of AGE powder daily in divided doses and the other group took a placebo. At the end of the six-week study, two markers of inflammation were significantly lower in those taking AGE “Although the mechanism by which aged garlic employs its effect on obesity-induced inflammation is still not clear, the changes in inflammatory mediators that we found show that the consumption of AGE can produce an anti-inflammatory effect in adults with obesity,” said Susan Percival, one of the study’s authors.
Regulate Blood Sugar with AGE Garlic
Garlic has various benefits for blood sugar and metabolic health. In one study of people with metabolic syndrome, AGE increased levels of adiponectin, a hormone involved in regulating blood sugar.
“Aged garlic extract has potential suppressive effect on colorectal adenomas in humans” by S. Tanaka et al., 3/06; “Aged garlic extract modifies human immunity” by S.S. Percival, 2/16; “Garlic and heart disease” by R. Varshney and M.J. Budoff, 2/16, J Nutr
“Aged garlic extract improves adiponectin levels in subjects with metabolic syndrome: A double-blind, placebo-controlled, randomized, crossover study” by D. Gomez-Arbelaez et al., Mediators of Inflammation, 2013
“Aged garlic extract supplementation modifies inflammation and immunity of adults with obesity: A randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled clinical trial” by C. Xu et al., Elsevier, 6/27/17
“Aged garlic extract supplemented with B vitamins, folic acid and L-arginine retards the progression of subclinical atherosclerosis: A randomized clinical trial” by M.J. Budoff et al., Prev Med, 8-9/09 l
“Beneficial effects of aged garlic extract and coenzyme Q10 on vascular elasticity and endothelial function...” by V.N. Larijani et al., Nutrition, 1/13
“Chemical and biological properties of S-1-Propenyl-l-cysteine in aged garlic extract” by Y. Kodera et al., Molecules, 3/31/17
“The effect of aged garlic extract on blood pressure and other cardiovascular risk factors in uncontrolled hypertensives...” by K. Ried et al., Integr Blood Press Control, 1/27/16