Ek Pothi Lehsun. Pearl Garlic. Snow Mountain Garlic.
Some call it a herb while others call it a vegetable. But one thing is clear, adding it to any dish elevates it to a whole new level. Kashmiri Lahsun, also known as Snow Mountain Garlic has a tall flowering stalk and broad, flat leaves that form a bulb. As the name suggests, it is generally found in mountainous areas around lakes. The single-clove Kashmiri Garlic is believed to be seven times more potent than regular garlic due to an increased presence of ancillin which imparts a pungent smell to it.
Unlike regular garlic which is found in clusters, these are found in the form of single-cloves. Hence, they are often referred to as Pearl Garlic, owing to their round shape and small size. In ancient times, mountaineers would consume Kashmiri Lahsun in its raw form to increase their oxygen capacity and stay energetic. However, its health benefits go beyond this.
Here are a some more health benefits of Kashmiri Garlic:
1. Aids in digestion
Ek Pothi Lehsun is beneficial for those with symptoms of indigestion and acid reflux. When eaten on an empty stomach, it improves the body’s digestive functions. However, those with chronic acidity and gastritis should avoid Kashmiri Garlic.
2. Good for your heart
One of the greatest benefits of Kashmiri Garlic is its ability to care for your heart. It reduces the level of LDL cholesterol (bad cholesterol) and triglycerides in your body. Studies also indicate that consuming Snow Mountain Garlic can reduce the density of blood, thereby preventing the formation of plaque and blood clots. It also contains hydrogen sulfide that relaxes your muscles and helps bring down stress levels.
3. Controls blood sugar level
The benefits of Kashmiri Garlic go beyond digestion and stress reduction. Those with high blood sugar levels consume it to keep diabetes at bay. The presence of Allicin, Vitamin B and Thiamine signal the pancreas to pump insulin into the body which regulates our blood sugar level.
4. Good for your respiratory tract
If you’ve got a serious case of seasonal sniffles, crush 2-3 pods of Kashmiri Garlic, mix the extract with water and drink it. Those with bronchitis, asthma, lung congestion or whooping cough should definitely try this home remedy to experience the benefits of Kashmiri Garlic.
How to consume Snow Mountain Garlic for maximum benefit?
According to certain Ayurvedic practices, Pearl Garlic is known to boost immunity and is a great cure for tuberculosis, common cold and even some forms of cancer. The best way to glean maximum benefits of Kashmiri Garlic is to eat the pods raw or consume garlic extract after crushing them.
However, be careful to not bring these pods in contact with a knife or metallic surface. Using a metal knife can destroy its medicinal properties, so it's advisable to crush the pods with a wooden or stone mortar and pestle. The best time to consume Kashmiri Garlic is before breakfast because the bacteria in our bodies are in their most vulnerable state. A glass of garlic water in the morning detoxifies your body and prepares you for the day ahead.
Scripted by Prakriti Bhat for K&M.