Can Garlic Kill You?


In this short article, we will answer the question, “Can garlic kill you?”, with an in-depth analysis of what garlic is, its uses of garlic, the health benefits of garlic, its consumption limit, nutritional prospects, and side effects.

Can garlic kill you?

No, Garlic can not kill you. But consuming it in a high amount can lead to unpleasant health conditions. Garlic is a herb used in culinary aspects, almost every kitchen contains a clove of garlic or garlic powder. It is a staple in most kitchens for a flavorsome experience.

Garlic in its raw form contains a compound called Allicin, which is mainly responsible for the pungent odor of garlic. Allicin also contains sulfur in a moderate amount. If garlic is consumed in a balanced way it can have numerous health benefits but if a certain limit is exceeded it causes health risks of various levels.

Garlic is mostly sauteed, roasted or fried before adding it to any dish, when used in this way it has a pleasant aroma and loses most of its foul smell, which is due to the amount of allicin getting diminished during cooking. Raw garlic when consumed maintains its odor and leads to repulsive breath and if consumed excessively, some health issues as well.

What is garlic?

Garlic is a herb belonging to the genus Allium. It is found in the form of a bulb and is closely related to the onion family.

 A fresh and raw garlic contains multiple sulfur-containing compounds including allicin, ajoene, vinyldithiins, diallyl polysulfides, and numerous non-sulfur enzymes.

Due to its potent and pungent odor garlic is also called the ‘stinking rose’.

Uses of garlic:

Garlic is an ever-present ingredient in all types of culinary practices. It is used in fresh and powdered form for Italian, Indian, Chinese, and all types of cuisines for its rich and aromatic fragrance and taste. Garlic is either fried, sauteed, roasted, or baked and added to multiple dishes for additional flavor.

Health benefits of garlic:

Garlic is said to have many benefits for one’s immune system. In contrast to cooked garlic, which contains a fairly low amount of sulfur-containing compounds, raw garlic has much more advantages.

Some of the possible health benefits include;

·         Boost in immunity due to many antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals present in the raw form

·         Lowers the risk of hypertension and heart diseases

·         Improves blood sugar level

·         Lowers the cholesterol level

·         Detoxification of metals in the blood due to a high level of sulfur

·         In some cultures, it is also used in the treatment of cold and blocked sinuses

·         Anti-oxidants present in garlic are beneficial for neural health and helps with dementia and Alzheimer’s diseases.

·         It also has anti-thrombotic properties

Nutritional composition:

Nutritional value of a raw garlic per 100 g includes;

·         Energy                    149 kcal

·         Carbohydrates        33.06 g

·         Fat                           0.5 g

·         Protein                     6.36 g

·         Dietary fiber             0.2 g

·         Magnesium              0.25 g

·         Calcium                  181 mg

·         Potassium                402 mg

·         Water                       59 g

·         Iron                          1.7 mg

·         Phosphorus             153 mg

Consumption Limit:

Eating 2-3 cloves of garlic per day is safe for health, and it has many health benefits. Exceeding that amount leads to excessive amounts of sulfur-containing substances in the blood which causes many health hazards.

Disadvantages of excessive garlic usage:

Consuming garlic more than the recommended quantity can lead to numerous potential health risks which if prolonged can reduce the life quality. Following are a few of the side effects of too much garlic consumption

·         Can cause liver toxicity because of high anti-oxidant properties. It can also cause partial liver damage but in safe dosage, it is good for liver health.

·         Garlic causes bad and repugnant body odor and foul breath. Mouth refreshing sprays, mints, and deodorants are a solution to this.

·         It can increase the risk of bleeding because of the anti-thrombotic properties, thus it reduces the ability of the body to form blood clots.

·         If consumed on an empty stomach garlic is known to cause nausea and vomiting

·         In some individuals, garlic is also known to cause heartburn, it may be because of the high amount of sulfur compounds

·         Garlic is also known for causing digestive issues such as bloating, gas, and diarrhea. It may be because of fructans, which is present abundantly in garlic and plays a major role in gas and bloating.

·         Prolonged interaction of garlic may cause rashes and redness.


In this short article, we have answered the question, “Can garlic kill you?”, with an in-depth analysis of garlic, its uses in day to day life, its health benefits of garlic, its nutritional profile, consumption limit, and the side effects on health with excessive usage of garlic.


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