Aged garlic cuts down plaque

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The study found that aged garlic extract supplements reduced the amount of dangerous plaque accumulated in the arteries, slowing the progression of heart disease.

The World Health Organisation (WHO) recognises the use of garlic as an adjuvant to the dietary management of hyperlipidemia (a high level of lipids in the blood), in the prevention of age-related vascular changes (­atherosclerosis) and in mild cases of hypertension.

“This study is another demonstration of the benefits of this supplement in reducing the accumulation of soft plaque and preventing the formation of new plaque in the arteries, which can cause heart disease,” said Matthew J. Budoff, a lead researcher at LA BioMed.

This plaque is often rich in lipids (cholesterol). Over time, it obstructs blood vessels and restricts blood flow.

Causes include lifestyle factors (­smoking, obesity, stress, lack of ­exercise, oral contraception, alcoholism), genetic factors (family history of stroke, being male, menopause), metabolic disease (high cholesterol, diabetes, gout) and high blood pressure.

The researchers studied 55 patients aged 40 to 75 diagnosed with ­metabolic conditions such as high blood pressure, obesity and cardiovascular risk factors.

One group took a placebo while the other was given a 2.4mg daily dose of aged garlic extract for a year.

One year later, the garlic eaters had slowed the total accumulation of plaque by 80%, reduced its density and seen plaque levels regress.

Source:  AFP­ Relaxnews

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