Garlic, a Nutritional Supplement?

Sierra Farfsing

Summary

“Can Garlic Function as a Nutrition Supplement?” is a magazine article written by Ginger Hultin for the Food and Nutrition Magazine. This article was published on February 26, 2016. According to the article, garlic is possibly related to lowering blood pressure and preventing hypertension. She explains that garlic has the ability to help in vasodilation by inhibiting angiotensin II, a substance that narrows blood vessels and increases blood pressure. She goes onto explain that the antioxidant, allicin, found in garlic is also beneficial related to hypertension. She then explains that there has been research done proving that garlic affects blood pressure, but there is no evidence to show that the effects of garlic on blood pressure would last long-term. She concludes that there needs to be more research done before garlic is recommended as an actual treatment for high blood pressure.

Critique

This article was very interesting to read, but there were many flaws in it. First of all, this article did not cite anyone or anything. She only cites herself at the end. Ginger Hultin has her MS, RD, and CSO and is a health writer, but a credible article needs more than just one citation. It needs several credible scholars. She goes on to explains research studies regarding the effect of garlic on high blood pressure, but does not go into detail on who did the research, how long ago the research was conducted, or the credentials of the researcher at all. Her article also did not interpret the results among different individuals and groups. There could be different results and effects of garlic among different ethnicities or genders. This is not mentioned at all in the article. On the site that contains the article, there is also no editorial board identified. This decreases the credibility of the article greatly. Lastly, the conclusion of the article is very misleading. The whole article is about the benefits of garlic on high blood pressure and how much it will help with hypertension. When it comes it an end, she explains that there isn’t enough evidence to support her claim long term. This defeats the purpose of her article. If I were Ginger Hultin and I wanted to find more valid information on this topic, I would look at scholarly sources such as colleges and universities, professional health organizations, reputable consumer groups, or journals such as the National Library of Medicine’s Pub Med for information. The use of sources such as these would make her article much more credible.