Tasty local garlic is now available at pretty much every local farm market in the area, adding flavor to many savory (and sweet!) dishes. Garlic has many health benefits, including properties which protect your cardiovascular system.
Garlic helps protect your cells and blood vessels with its antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties: garlic has a unique set of sulfur-containing compounds which help protect our cardiovascular system from both oxidative stress and unwanted inflammation. This combination makes garlic an excellent choice for cardiovascular health, especially in regards chronic degenerative conditions such as atherosclerosis.
Garlic also helps prevent clots from forming inside the blood vessels, thanks to a compound known as ajoene. Ajoene helps prevent platelets from becoming too sticky and thereby lowers the risk of the platelets clumping together to form a clot.
Garlic can also help lower blood pressure by blocking the action of a particular protein peptide; this peptide causes our blood vessels to contract (thereby increasing blood pressure as blood is forced through narrower vessels). By blocking the activity of this peptide, the garlic can prevent an undesired contraction of the blood vessels and thus prevent an elevation in blood pressure.
Garlic is a very good source of vitamin C, which is the number one antioxidant defender in the bloodstream. Garlic protects the LDL cholesterol from oxidation, and it is the oxidized form of LDL cholesterol that begins damaging vessel walls. By reducing the amount of oxidizing free radicals in the bloodstream, garlic can have a significant impact in preventing cardiovascular disease.
Stock up on heart-healthy garlic now; you can see garlic and other produce available at the Garden Station Sunday Market in the slideshow.
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