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Originally published October 7 2010

Garlic oil shows protective effect against heart damage in diabetics

by S. L. Baker, features writer

(NaturalNews) Diabetes isn't a disease that only impacts the pancreas and plays havoc with blood sugar levels -- it ups the risk for a host of other health problems, from damaged vision to nerve pain. And over 30 percent of diabetics in the U.S. have some kind of heart disease, too, according to statistics from the Framingham study. In addition to large vessel disease and accelerated atherosclerosis, diabetes is also associated with diabetic cardiomyopathy (DCM), which enlarges the heart and makes it more thick and rigid than normal. Complications from cardiomyopathy include heart failure, abnormal heart rhythms, fluid buildup in the lungs and legs and death.

But new research just published in the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry shows a simple, natural therapy -- garlic oil -- may prevent this potentially deadly heart problem which inflames and weakens the heart muscle.

Background information included in the study, which was conducted by scientists from China Medical University and Chung Shan Medical University in Taiwan, noted that people with diabetes have at least two times the risk of death from heart disease as others. In fact, heart disease is behind about 80 percent of all diabetes-related deaths. Dr. Wei-Wen Kuo, who headed the new research, and his colleagues gathered data from past studies which indicated garlic might protect against heart disease in general. They also found reports indicating garlic could help control the abnormally high blood sugar levels that occur in diabetes. So they decided to look specifically at whether garlic's multiple heart healthy benefits could add up to protection from diabetic cardiomyopathy.

In experiments with laboratory rats with diabetes, the scientists fed the animals either garlic oil or corn oil. The rodents who were given garlic oil experienced beneficial changes in their cardiovascular health -- changes associated with protection against heart damage. How was garlic responsible for these benefits? The scientists stated that garlic oil appears to have potent antioxidant properties. In all, they have identified more than 20 substances in garlic oil that may keep hearts and the cardiovascular system of diabetics healthier. "In conclusion, garlic oil possesses significant potential for protecting hearts from diabetes-induced cardiomyopathy," the report concluded.

More breaking garlic news: in a study just published in Journal of Natural Medicine, scientists from Krupanidhi College of Pharmacy in Bangalore, India, reported that garlic appears to have blood pressure lowering as well as cardioprotective abilities, too.

Editor's note: NaturalNews is opposed to the use of animals in medical experiments that expose them to harm. We present these findings in protest of the way in which they were acquired.

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