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Versatile, remarkable garlic

Updated: September 29, 2011 12:53AM



Dear Dr. Gott: I have written to you before about alternative uses for garlic but have never seen them published in your column.

Garlic gel capsules will prevent or cure a cold or sinus infection, as well as alleviate tooth abscesses if taken every two hours until relief of the symptoms occurs.

Dear Reader: I apologize if I haven’t responded to your letters in the past, but I can assure you that I have endorsed this remarkable product for such things as easing the pain of an earache, controlling hot flashes and keeping mosquitoes from biting, to name a few.

Garlic has been used for countless years and for reasons we wouldn’t consider appropriate. For example, in ancient times, garlic was thought to repel evil and protected warriors from witches and vampires. During the early 18th century, gravediggers drank crushed garlic in wine to protect themselves from the plague that hit Europe. During the two world wars, soldiers were given garlic because it was believed to prevent gangrene. It has been used against arthritis and intestinal infections, and is added to pet food to repel ticks and fleas. It repels deer, rabbits and other garden animals, and now we use it to prevent heart disease, keep cholesterol levels and blood-pressure readings lower, and improve our immune systems. It appears to both prevent and treat the common cold. It may even help fight cancer, although there is no conclusive testing in this regard. Studies, however, have found that people who eat more raw and cooked garlic are less likely to develop some cancers, particularly those of the stomach and colon. There is no conclusive evidence to prove it works, but garlic is rich in antioxidants that help destroy free radicals.

Side effects from this phenomenal herb include body odor, bad breath, upset stomach and more, but overall its benefits outweigh its pesky side effects. Supplements are available over-the-counter and are made from fresh garlic, dried garlic, garlic oil and extracts. There is variation in the amount of active ingredients between manufacturers, so be sure to read labels if you opt for supplemental forms. Otherwise, enjoy garlic in its natural form, keep your kitchen smelling like a heavenly Italian restaurant and stay healthy.

Other products can order my Health Reports “Compelling Home Remedies” and “More Compelling Home Remedies” by sending a self-addressed stamped No. 10 envelope and a $2 check or money order for each report to Dr. Peter Gott, P.O. Box 433, Lakeville, CT 06039-0433. Mention the title(s) when writing or print an order form off my website’s direct link at www.AskDrGottMD.com/order—form.pdf.

Dear Dr. Gott:

I am looking for an article I think was in your column regarding a woman who suffered with IBS and was taking daily shots of vitamin B12. How can I retrieve this?

Dear Reader: I don’t recall writing about daily injections of B12, but I can offer a few options. Visit my website at www.AskDrGottMD.com. At the top of the home page, you will see a section known as “browse by topic” that has been recently updated. You will be directed to an alphabetical listing that includes, under the letter I, IBS. You will find one reader’s question and my answer. This is followed by one of my guest columnist’s articles on IBS.

You can also order my Health Report “Irritable Bowel Syndrome” by following the instructions at the end of my last letter or log on to either www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov or www.mayoclinic.com.

Vitamin B12 may help relieve abdominal pain caused by diseases or conditions that lead to poor absorption. People who prefer not taking supplements, fortified foods such as soy milk, saltwater fish, eggs, liver , oysters and aged cheeses should get you on the right path. Good luck.



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