While yeast is naturally found in the vagina, when the fungus accumulates, it can result in an uncomfortable condition known as a yeast infection (1).
The most common type of yeast that leads to infection is Candida albicans, which can cause itching and burning, as well as produce a thick white discharge (1). It is estimated that approximately three out of every four women will experience a yeast infection at some point in her life, making it a very common, but uncomfortable condition (2).
Garlic is not just for warding off vampires
Traditional methods of treating yeast infections include the use of antifungal cream, ointment, or the use of a suppository; in some cases, physicians may prescribe a single-dose medication that is taken orally (2). While these methods have been shown to be effective in the treatment of yeast infections, emerging research suggests that garlic, or rather a component in garlic, can help to treat mild to moderate yeast infections (3).
One study compared a traditional treatment for yeast infections, clotrimazole cream, with a vaginal cream that contained garlic and thyme (3). When comparing the effects of each treatment type, it was found that there was no difference between the traditional yeast infection treatment and the use of the cream that contained garlic and thyme (3). Both treatments for yeast infections were proven to be effective.
Garlic dosage for the treatment of yeast infections
It is thought that one of the active ingredients in garlic, specifically allyl sulfide, contains antimicrobial agents that can help to reduce excessive fungal growth, kill bacteria and viruses, while at the same time helping the immune system to react more effectively to any perceived infection (3).
Garlic also helps to increase resistance to various fungi in the body, including Candida albicans, which often causes yeast infections (4). Garlic can be consumed in a variety of ways, each providing a different dose of active ingredients. For the treatment of a current and active yeast infection, the recommended dosage is two to four grams of minced garlic, or 600-900 mg of freeze-dried garlic tablets (5).
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