An Australian variety of garlic could reduce COVID-19 and flu-related infections, according to a new study by the Peter Doherty Institute for Infection and Immunity (the Doherty Institute) and Australian Garlic Producers.
According to ABC News, the study tested 20 varieties of garlic in different forms. Only one as-yet-to-be-named garlic was effective in preventing viral cells from spreading SARS-CoV-2 (the COVID-19 virus) and influenza A in the digestive system.
The potentially flu-busting garlic is from a commercial crop grown in Merbein, near Mildura, in north-western Victoria.
Australian Garlic Producers chief executive, Nick Diamantopoulos, said that as a result of the discovery, his company would be developing dietary supplements. He stressed that some garlic varieties don’t have health benefits.
“Garlic is certainly healthy for you, but not all garlic is the same,” Mr Diamantopolous said. “There are some varieties that are good for flavour, but they don’t necessarily all have health benefits.”
Mr Diamantopolous said the product must be ingested raw.
“You have to have it fresh like in a salad, or uncooked form, the minute you cook it you’ll destroy all the health benefits,” he said.