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Unlike raw garlic, aged black garlic is fermented for several months. This fermentation process may make all the difference.
Even though raw garlic earns most of the praise for potential heart health benefits, aged black garlic has been the subject of multiple studies. This fermented garlic has a slightly different phytochemical makeup to that of raw garlic, but a new study on aged black garlic and cholesterol suggests that aged black garlic could be just as useful to the heart.
In a study on subjects with high cholesterol, researchers at Chonbuk National University Hospital in South Korea assigned each participant to 6 g of aged black garlic extract or placebo daily and for 12 weeks. At the end of the study, the researchers saw an average increase in HDL cholesterol among garlic users, as well as decreases in alipoprotein B in blood lipids. Alipoprotein B is considered a strong indicator of heart disease risk.
Unlike raw garlic, aged black garlic may contain more S-allylcysteine and S-allymercaptocysteine, two garlic compounds that have been linked to antioxidant-like effects and other heart health benefits. Aged black garlic and its extracts may run at a premium compared to raw garlic ingredients, but previous research indicates that the fermented garlic contains less oil-soluble compounds that are odorous, harsh, and irritating.
Nutritional Outlook magazine
Photo © iStockphoto.com/MarkGillow
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