Bioactive Compounds and Biological Functions of Garlic (Allium sativum L.).Foods. 2019 Jul 05; 8(7)F
Garlic (Allium sativum L.) is a widely consumed spice in the world. Garlic contains diverse bioactive compounds, such as allicin, alliin, diallyl sulfide, diallyl disulfide, diallyl trisulfide, ajoene, and S-allyl-cysteine. Substantial studies have shown that garlic and its bioactive constituents exhibit antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, antibacterial, antifungal, immunomodulatory, cardiovascular protective, anticancer, hepatoprotective, digestive system protective, anti-diabetic, anti-obesity, neuroprotective, and renal protective properties. In this review, the main bioactive compounds and important biological functions of garlic are summarized, highlighting and discussing the relevant mechanisms of actions. Overall, garlic is an excellent natural source of bioactive sulfur-containing compounds and has promising applications in the development of functional foods or nutraceuticals for the prevention and management of certain diseases.