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Garlic and H. Pylori

By: Emily Zhang

Among all the bacteria, Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori) bacteria is the main one that infects the human stomach. They are the main reason for peptic ulcers, which cause sores in the stomach. The most common symptom of peptic ulcers is burning stomach pain. Patients might also feel heartburn and nausea as a result of this disease. Some of those infected also develop feelings of fullness, bloating, or belching. The pain oftentimes occurs periodically. Intake of food would temporarily relieve the pain, but it would worsen between meals and during the night time. It is very common for children to get infected with H. pylori bacteria. 

Half of the world population gets infection of the H. pylori bacteria. However, most people cannot sense it because symptoms only occur once they develop peptic ulcers from the bacteria. Because of this, it’s essential to stop the infection before it affects the stomach.

However, a study by Mahmoud Zardast found out, raw garlic has antibacterial effects against H. pylori in the stomach. It can be used along with routine drugs to treat peptic ulcers. People can also take garlic regularly to help prevent and reverse H. pylori bacterial infection. 

In their study, 15 patients were enrolled in the study. First, a Urease Breath Test record was taken as a base. Then in the first 3 days of the study, the patients were not allowed to eat garlic or any antibacterial medicine. The Urease Breath Test record was taken as one record of the study. 3 days later, patients were given 3g garlic twice a day. After another three days, the Urease Breath Test recorded again to compare it with the previous result. While there was no significant difference after the first 3 days without taking garlic, the results of the Urease Breath Test showed that there was a significantly lower level of H. pylori after treatment with garlic. 

[Zardast, M]: Assessment of antibacterial effect of garlic in patients infected with Helicobacter pylori using urease breath test https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5052411/#:~:text=The%20results%20of%20this%20study,or%20following%20longer%20treatment%20courses

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