Garlic is a great way to lower blood pressure and decrease the risk to suffer from cardiovascular disease, according to a recent study conducted at the University of Alabama at Birmingham. The beneficial effects of garlic are connected to the amount of hydrogen sulfide (H2S) produced due to the interaction between garlic compounds and red cells, said researchers.
H2S is a flammable, toxic gas that is naturally produced by the body in small amounts. This compound production decreases as people get older. It is not entirely clear yet how H2S can protect the cardiovascular system so much, but it may be linked to the oxidative process in cells, according to lead author Dr. David Kraus.
The blood vessels may relax due to the H2S release and garlic may trigger red blood cells to release hydrogen sulfide. The study`s results showed that the H2S production lead to a seventy-two percent vessel relaxation for rats. Researchers focused on certain molecules in the garlic called polysulfides and their capacity to increase the H2S production. The findings proved that muscle cells relax when the H2S targets the membrane.
A diet rich in garlic has many beneficial effects, said Kraus. Previously, it was known that garlic plays a key role in limiting cancer growth, preventing platelet aggregation, and the progression of several diseases. Relaxation is the first step to a lower blood pressure and a healthier heart, said Kraus.
To lower your blood pressure you might also consider dancing. Square dancing could lead to a slower heart rate, improve cholesterol profile, lower blood pressure, provide cardiovascular conditioning, strengthen bones, loosen and tone muscles, and develop strong social ties.