(Natural News) Warts and corns are two of the most common dermatological conditions that plague the skin. Warts are caused by infection of a certain virus while corns are the products of repetitive actions that cause too much pressure and friction. In a study published in the International Journal of Dermatology, researchers from Shiraz University of Medical Sciences in Iran reported that a popular culinary ingredient can be used to treat warts and corns. Garlic, which is often used to season food, showed various biological activities when used as a topical treatment, resulting in patients making partial or full recoveries from their skin conditions.
Garlic extracts prove effective against warts and corns
For their study, the researchers obtained extracts from peeled garlic using different solvents. They worked with several patients with warts and corns and divided them into three groups. One group consisted of 28 patients with two to 96 warts, while the other group consisted of nine patients with one to two corns. Five patients with seven to 35 warts served as the control group.
For the first phase of their trial, the researchers asked patients to apply water extracts of garlic twice daily on their warts. For the second phase, they asked the patients from the two groups to apply a fat-soluble garlic extract twice daily on their warts or corns. Meanwhile, patients from the control group treated their warts or corns with a solution containing chloroform and methanol in a 2:1 ratio for 20 days.
The researchers reported that treatment with water extracts of garlic for 30 to 40 days eliminated small warts and partially improved the appearance of larger warts. They also reported that treatment for a period of two months was enough for patients to achieve partial recovery.
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For the second phase, 23 patients with two to 96 warts and nine patients with one to two corns received a fat-soluble garlic extract as treatment. The researchers reported complete recovery in patients with warts after one to two weeks of treatment. Meanwhile, all of the patients with corns also showed complete recovery with the exception of two, who only showed marked improvement but did not achieve full recovery even after continuing the treatment. The researchers found that the optimal period of treatment for corns using the fat-soluble garlic extract is between 10 and 20 days.
On the other hand, the control group showed no improvement for either warts or corns. After three to four months, the researchers conducted a follow-up and found no recurrence of warts among the garlic extract-treated patients, suggesting that garlic treatment is more effective than modern treatments. Based on these findings, the researchers concluded that the fat-soluble garlic extract is a great natural treatment for warts and corns.
What’s in garlic?
Upon further investigation, the researchers attributed garlic’s beneficial effects on warts and corns to four of its well-known biological activities. These include:
- Anti-viral activity — Warts are caused by the human papillomavirus (HPV). Garlic has strong anti-viral properties, which make it effective against viral infections.
- Anti-tumor activity — According to numerous studies, garlic has anticancer/anti-tumor properties. Since warts are similar to benign tumors, they are susceptible to garlic’s effects.
- Immunomodulatory activity — While the mechanisms behind garlic’s beneficial effects are still unclear, the researchers believed that its ability to enhance immune response may be a contributing factor.
- Fibrinolytic activity — The researchers observed that garlic extract can cause the removal of corns, so they hypothesized that garlic’s ability to break down the fibrin tissue surrounding corn capsules causes the separation of corns from the main tissue. (Related: Garlic – DIY, recipes, and other information you should know about this amazing herb.)
Garlic is a superfood that offers many health benefits. Besides being a potent anti-microbial and anti-tumor agent, garlic can also be used to treat common skin conditions. To get the most of its therapeutic properties, consider making garlic a regular part of your diet.