Garlic may fight antimicrobial resistant urinary tract infections

Garlic may fight antimicrobial resistant urinary tract infections

Garlic has long been known as one of nature’s true medicines. It is a potent immune booster, helps lower cholesterol, aids in the body’s natural detox process, and has powerful anti-inflammatory properties.

New research from the Birla Institute of Technology and Sciences in India now shows that garlic may fight antimicrobial resistant urinary tract infections.

A urinary tract infection (UTI) is an infection of any part of the urinary system, including the kidneys, bladder, uterus, and the urethra.

Garlic extract may fight drug resistant strains of bacteria that is associated with urinary tract infection.

The researchers noted: “Even crude extracts of [garlic] showed good activity against multidrug resistant strains where antibiotic therapy had limited or no effect. This provides hope for developing alternative drugs which may be of help in fighting the menace of growing antibacterial resistance.”

UTI is the second most common infectious disease found in community practice. About 150 million people worldwide are diagnosed with a UTI each year. The common treatment for UTIs is antibiotics. However, the authors argue that “emerging antimicrobial resistance compels us to look back into traditional medicines or herbal products, which may provide appropriate/acceptable alternative solutions.”

Garlic has been used for centuries to treat a wide variety of health conditions. The compounds allicin and sulphur are believed to be responsible for garlic’s potent healing properties.

The researchers found that 56 percent of 166 bacteria strains found in the urine of participants with UTI had a high resistance to drugs. They also found that 82 percent of these bacteria could be treated by garlic extract. “Ours is the first study to report the antibacterial activity of aqueous garlic extract against multidrug resistant bacterial isolates from infected urine samples leading to UTI,” the authors said.

To conclude, there is evidence that garlic has potential in the treatment of UTI and maybe other microbial infections,” says the team. “However, it is necessary to determine the bioavailability, side effects and pharmacokinetic properties in more detail.”

The study showing that garlic may treat antimicrobial resistant urinary tract infections was published in the Pertanika Journal of Tropical Agricultural Science.

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1. “Using Garlic to Combat Antimicrobial Resistant Urinary Tract Infections.” ResearchSEA. ResearchSEA, 09 July 2015. Web. 13 July 2015.
2. “Garlic: An Effective Functional Food to Combat the Growing Antimicrobial Resistance.” Tropical Agricultural Science (2015): n. pag. Pertanika Journals. Pertanika Journals, 2015. Web. 13 July 2015.
3. “Urinary Tract Infection (UTI).” Mayo Clinic. Mayo Clinic, n.d. Web. 13 July 2015.

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