Garlic! The food we love to avoid for it’s odor producing properties but of all the times of the year now is the time to consume it. Not the bland, white odorless varieties shipped in from overseas either but the pungent, locally grown varieties for their sulfur containing compounds such as thiosulfinates and sulfoxides which not only provide the flavour but are responsible for the health benefits as well.
Garlic has an abundance of actions which contribute to the prevention of infection during the winter months. Not only does it strengthen the immune system but it a broad spectrum anti-microbial action which helps to protect against viruses such as colds and flus and secondary chest infections. It can also help to protect against the gastro bugs which appear to be doing the rounds at the present. Studies also confirm that garlic can help to lower blood pressure and cholesterol with independent plaque reducing activity on the blood vessels walls. Studies also reveal that, due to its selenium content, garlic lowers the risk of certain cancers such as oesophageal, laryngeal and ovarian cancers. So the downside, of course, is the healthier you are by consuming garlic the stinkier your breath. This can reduced by eating parsley at the same time.