6 Worst Garlic Side Effects You Should Know

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Garlic is really a wonder herb with many medicinal uses and health benefits. Garlic has been used for centuries so its safety is well established but like with any ingredient, if consumed in excess, it can cause certain side effects. Though uncommon, some people can also be allergic to garlic.

What Is Garlic?

Garlic is a species of bulbous plant and is closely related to our common onion. It is a perennial flowering plant that grows out of a bulb. Garlic plant has a tall stem that grows almost up to 3 feet. The plant produces flowers and is mainly of purple colour. Garlic is native to Asia and Iran but is now widely cultivated all over the world, China is the top supplier of garlic now.

Garlic Dosage:

I love garlic and consume a lot of it when added to dishes but I usually don’t go beyond 5 grams which is also the general suggested amount and it has never caused me any problems. Always use garlic essential oil mixed with a carrier oil for external applications and for internal consumption, I would suggest using plain garlic or garlic oil capsules.

For using externally, usually 1 to 2 % dilution of garlic essential oil with base oil is recommended, I would suggest starting with 1 % dilution. For internal consumption of garlic oil capsules, the recommended dosage is one 5000 mg capsule per day.

5 Top Garlic Side Effects

1. Garlic Breath:

Many of us would have experienced the embarrassing garlic breath after consuming foods that contain large amounts of garlic. Garlic breath is more strong when we consume sauteed or raw garlic compared to cooked garlic. Drinking adequate amounts of water and brushing after a meal rich in garlic can prevent garlic breath.

2. Body Odor

When our body breaks down foods that contain high amounts of sulphur compounds like garlic, it can cause body odor. Like bad breath, body odor caused due to garlic can be greatly reduced by increasing our water intake.

3. Garlic Allergy

Garlic allergy can cause skin inflammation, red welts and rashes, rapid swelling of the face and in extreme cases skin blisters and difficulty breathing. It can also cause photo allergy too. If you are allergic to garlic, please avoid all foods that contain garlic in any form.

4. Skin Burns

Garlic is one of the popular home remedies for warts. We pound fresh garlic and apply it as a poultice over the warts and it does help get rid of warts quickly but some people can experience skin burns when they apply fresh garlic. I would highly suggest doing a patch test before applying fresh garlic as a poultice.

5. Mouth Burns:

During this pandameic, many of us were resorting to natural remedies to improve immunity. A 72 year old woman started consuming raw garlic everyday to improve her immunity and within a few days she experienced severe burns and mouth ulcers. It quickly healed once she stopped consuming raw garlic so please practice caution when consuming raw garlic.

6. Drug Interactions

Garlic, especially taken in in large amounts like in the form of garlic tablets can interfere with certain medications like anticoagulants and it can also reduce the efficiency of anti aids drugs. If you are on any of these medications please mention it to your physician before consuming it in large doses.

garlic benefits


  1. raj
    March 7, 2014 / 5:49 pm

    Thanks for sharing this good remedy and it is very easy to use.But what can we use as a substitude for breast milk for toddlers ?Thanks.

  2. ramya
    March 8, 2014 / 4:01 am

    For toddlers, the garlic can be ground with boiled water instead of breast milk.

  3. Manju Arumugam
    April 7, 2014 / 2:26 pm

    Thankyou very much for your wonderful posts.They are really very useful.

  4. Anonymous
    December 16, 2014 / 3:28 pm

    When is the best time to give babies this medicine?

  5. Ramya Venkateshwaran
    December 17, 2014 / 1:00 pm

    Hi, Usually any medicines like this is best given in an empty stomach, I use to do it after my son's morning nap when his stomach is empty after his morning feed….

  6. Anonymous
    January 3, 2015 / 12:38 pm

    Hi Ramya. Since the birth of my son I have been very conscious to avoid western medicines and have made an effort to seek out my late gran's traditional home remedies. I stumbled upon your blog whilst searching for something for my son's chest congestion. I am so impressed with it and thankful to you for sharing such valuable info. The blog is wonderful and your pics are gorgeous. Well done Ramya in revealing these ancient remedies and good luck for the future. I'm sure I will be an ardent follower of your blog and will recommend to all my friends, esp here in UK. I tried your mustard foot bath for my son earlier and he's knocked out now, after 2 hrs of whinging and wanting to be cuddled only. He's still very badly congested, alot of phlegm. How many garlic pods should I use for a 4 year old? Thanks! Krithika

  7. Ramya Venkateshwaran
    January 4, 2015 / 2:14 am

    Krithika,I am so glad you like the blog 🙂 We usually use this home remedy for infants, as you need breast milk. Regular cows milk increases the phlegm and grinding it with water makes it hard to swallow. I would suggest trying the holy basil leaves remedy for him, it works wonders in removing the phlegm and I was using it regularly for my son, when he was younger. Within 3 days usually the phlegm reduces and also try eucalyptus steam inhalation either with fresh leaves or with essential oils. Both the remedies can be found in the blog……

  8. vidya
    August 16, 2015 / 7:44 pm

    Vidya, my son is 2 yrs old. And he is suffering from cold since a week. But I ve following this step all these days but couldn't find any good result – cows milk with smashed raw garlic and I allow it to boil. Cool if and then give it to my son. Is it right.

    • Ramya Venkateshwaran
      August 18, 2015 / 4:28 pm

      Hi Vidya, We always do this remedy using breast milk as cows milk increases the phlegm (that is why we only use this remedy for babies). But since your son is 2 years old, I would suggest using tulsi cough syrup everyday morning in the empty stomach for 3 days. You can find the remedy here: https://www.wildturmeric.net/2013/02/cold-cure.html

  9. Elsie Lorpu
    January 10, 2016 / 3:45 pm

    Hi Ramya,Thank you very much for this remedy which I'm about to try. I just can't figure how milk I should add. I have to go pick up the garlic, but have plenty of breast milk. Also, can I use syringe to give it to her? She will be 6 months in 3 days. Thanks again.

    • Ramya Venkateshwaran
      February 1, 2016 / 4:06 pm

      The mixture should be thin, add enough breast milk to get a thin mixture and make sure to strain the mixture before giving it to her. You can use a syringe but be careful to give it very slowly…

  10. Jo
    June 27, 2016 / 11:30 am

    Can I give to my 1 month 25 days old baby

  11. Jo
    June 27, 2016 / 11:47 am

    Can I give this in the evening

  12. Jo
    June 27, 2016 / 11:48 am

    Please reply me my baby is feeling uncomfortable

    • Ramya Venkateshwaran
      June 27, 2016 / 3:19 pm

      You can give it in the evening too but make sure her stomach is empty while giving it…

  13. Anonymous
    October 7, 2016 / 10:16 am

    Hi mam can v give garlic weekly once with breast milk for nine months baby

    • Ramya Venkateshwaran
      October 17, 2016 / 3:12 pm

      We usually give this mixture only as a remedy when the child has chest congestion and I would suggest the same too..

  14. Priscilla Manu
    October 24, 2016 / 1:41 pm

    pls after using this for three days how long will it take for u to see improvement,also i will like to know if u have any traditional medicine to help strengthen a babies neck and help her sit and crawl early , she is 8months now but was born at 35 weeks

  15. Anonymous
    December 14, 2016 / 11:44 pm

    Hi can I give this remedy to my son he is 13 mon the old but from birth had phlegm. He is on cow's milk and his difficulties increases everytime he has a feed. He has also been treated with western medicines for these symptoms including antibiotics (different kinds) and OTC medicines and regular nebulizers with no significant improvement. I have not tried garlic milk before …willing to try but unfortunately I do not have breast milk..please is this the only remedy that can help? I really need something to give my son some long lasting relief.

  16. neena shah
    January 21, 2017 / 6:24 am

    Hello , I give my baby formula milk,So can I give nan pro and garlic please? Thanks!

  17. Sahiba shah
    June 3, 2017 / 9:36 am

    What we have to feed the baby left out mixture or strained mixture

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