Unlike most foods, food-processing does miraculous things to garlic. It triggers the formation of a cascade of compounds that do not already exist in raw garlic. Therefore, processing is the key to increasing the benefits of garlic and to decreasing or eliminating its toxic effects. A variety of sulfur-containing compounds formed through chemical and biological reactions, in addition to non-sulfur compounds, work synergistically (and/or antagonistically) in their contribution to the benefits of garlic internally. Based on their chemical constituents, all garlic products on the market today could be placed in one of the following four categories:
Garlic Oils: These products offer minute amounts of garlic essential oil in a large amount of vegetable oil. They often express their “potencies” in theoretical amounts of raw garlic used to obtain the distilled garlic oil. There is no scientific data to show that the oil fraction represents all of the benefits of garlic. Garlic essential oil, which mainly contains several sulfides, is also the most potent source of garlic odor and causes body odor. In addition, garlic oils do not contain any of the important water-soluble compounds.
Garlic Powders: Chemically, there is almost no difference between the garlic flavoring powders sold at grocery stores and the garlic supplements made of garlic powder and then sold at health food stores. Often these manufacturers claim that their products deliver allicin into the body. Though no garlic supplement can contain allicin due to its instability and high reactivity, some garlic powder products contain alliin and the enzyme, alliinase, and, therefore, can produce allicin with the addition of water in a test tube (the so-called “allicin potential”). However, allicin potential is an empty promise. The environments in a test tube and in our body are totally different and there is no scientific evidence to support the idea that allicin can be produced in the stomach. Furthermore, garlic powder contains only a residual amount of the alliin found in raw garlic, i.e., more than half of the alliin is lost during the manufacturing process.
Garlic Oil Macerates: There are two types of oil macerate products on the market and both are packaged in soft gel capsules. One is made by simply mixing a garlic flavoring powder with vegetable oil. It’s constituents are almost the same as the capsule and tablet forms of garlic powder. Another one is made by grounding raw garlic in vegetable oils. Since this type of product contains oil-soluble compounds (allicin break down products) and leftover alliin, it has a strong garlic odor. Both products are rich in fat -the major component being vegetable oil. Thus, they are not suitable for use as daily supplements.
KYOLIC® Aged Garlic Extract™: KYOLIC begins with only organically grown garlic bulbs. This is essential for growing naturally balanced garlic because organic fertilizers produce an ideal ratio of essential nutrients in the raw garlic without any contamination by harmful chemicals including herbicides and pesticides. Then KYOLIC is gently aged to convert the harsh and irritating compounds in raw garlic to mild, stable and beneficial compounds. KYOLIC Aged Garlic Extract, is a totally balanced garlic supplement containing large amounts of essential water-soluble compounds and small amounts of oil-soluble compounds. KYOLIC is a sociable garlic and its safety and benefits have been confirmed by over 600 scientific studies. Furthermore, the bioavailability of its key compound, S-allyl cysteine, has been substantiated.
|Type of product||Sulfur-containing compounds|
|Garlic Essential Oil||Oil-soluble sulfur compounds (DAS, DADS, etc.)|
|Oil Macerate||Oil-soluble sulfur compounds and alliin|
|Aged Garlic Extract||Rich in a variety of water-soluble sulfur compounds (SAC, SAMC, etc.) and a small amount of oil-soluble sulfur compounds|