Lemon and Garlic Combo May Lower Blood Pressure and Cholesterol
Both high blood pressure and high cholesterol are associated with cardiovascular disease, the leading killer in the Unite States. A recent study suggests a combination of garlic and lemon juice may help lower total and LDL cholesterol as well as improve blood pressure in people with elevated blood lipid levels.
Participants in the study included 112 people with elevated blood lipid levels who were assigned to one of four daily interventions:
- 20 grams of garlic and one tablespoon of lemon juice;
- 20 grams of garlic;
- one tablespoon of lemon juice;
- no intervention.
At the end of the eight-week intervention period, the combined lemon and garlic group had significant reductions in total cholesterol, LDL-cholesterol, and fibrinogen when compared with the other groups. Additionally, both the combination group and the garlic only group had greater reductions in systolic and diastolic blood pressure than the other two groups. The lemon and garlic group also had a greater reduction in BMI than the lemon juice group and the control group.
Researchers from the Isfahan University of Medical Sciences in Iran conducted the study. It was published online ahead of print on July 29, 2016, in the International Journal of Preventive Medicine.
Garlic has become increasingly popular as a way to help with cardiovascular and immune system health. The benefits of garlic are attributed to the compound allicin, which forms when the garlic is crushed, and is then breaks down to a sulfur-containing compound called diallyl sulphide.
Garlic is high in magnesium, vitamin B6, vitamin C, and selenium, and has also been linked to boosting the immune system and keeping the mind sharp as you age. Garlic can be added to almost any meal. It can also be obtained in oil, powder or cooked form or in a supplemental form.
Lemon has been associated with a range of benefits, including relief from throat infections, indigestion, dental problems, rheumatism, and burns. They contain vitamin C, vitamin B6, vitamin A, vitamin E, potassium, zinc, phosphorus folate, pantothenic acid, copper, calcium, iron, niacin thiamin, riboflavin, magnesium, and high levels of flavonoids.
Lemon can be consumed as a juice or added to many dishes as a flavor enhancer.