The long-term use of garlic in ischemic heart disease--an appraisal.


Arora RC, Arora S, Gupta RK






The hypocholesterolemic and fibrinolysis-enhancing properties of garlic were assessed in patients with ischemic heart disease (IHD) and in healthy control subjects. The peak of blood fibrinolytic activity (BFA) achieved at the 4th week of garlic therapy was not sustained despite its continuous use and returned to about the pre- garlic values at the 12th week. Garlic withdrawal did not cause any further change in BFA. Under the same conditions serum total cholesterol (STC) values did not show any significant change. Both of the foregoing features were observed in the IHD as well as in the control group. Garlic therapy for 12 weeks did not cause any appreciable changes in serum triglyceride, beta-lipoprotein, plasma fibrinogen levels or coagulation time in either IHD or control subjects. The evidence cited above does not appear to substantiate the prevalent popular belief in the efficacy of garlic in the management of IHD either as a hypocholesterolemic or as a fibrinolytic agent.