A Spoonful of Peanut Butter Helps the Garlic Go Down

I went to bed last night feeling like a beast of a virus was brewing in me. Head was foggy. Ears felt full. Throat ached. I was exhausted.

As anticipated, I woke up feeling a smidgeon worse – not better. I just recovered from a random raging ear infection not more than a week ago. There is no way I’m going down again. So I did what any self-respecting person would do and ate a clove of raw garlic.

What? Okay, let’s rewind. I hate going to the doctor. I hate taking meds. I hate being sick. Thankfully, I’m really not sick often considering the fact that I have a toddler in school, a toddler who likes to walk around with her hands shoved down the back of her underwear, who likes to hack in my mouth, sneeze in my eye, and wipe her boogers on my bed sheets when a tissue isn’t convenient. Considering all that, I have an olympian for an immune system.

But sometimes it fails. Who knows why these things happen. Stress? Too much processed foods? A few weeks of being up all night with the baby? Not washing my hands enough?

Luckily, I stumbled across the book The Secrets of People Who Never Get Sick by Gene Stone on the library e-book website a few weeks ago. It is full of some pretty interesting methods of wellness. In it you will find details behind numerous health philosophies including but not limited to taking cold showers, napping, dipping your head in a tub of hydrogen peroxide, drinking your urine, eating your boogers, and consuming brewers yeast and raw garlic. Are you intrigued yet?

I was pretty impressed by the science and the results of a lot of these methods but was most comfortable with the idea of eating raw garlic. I love garlic and think every food can be improved by garlic. If a recipe calls for a clove, I triple it.  So I was very pleased to read how beneficial it is to your health. Garlic has long been coveted across many cultures around the world for its antibiotic properties. In fact, it has been found that 1 milliliter of raw garlic juice is just as effective of an antibiotic as 64 milligrams of penicillin. People who include consuming raw garlic in their daily routines claim to have staved off the common cold and flu for years. I want to be one of those people!

But as much as I like garlic, I was a little chicken about just popping a clove in my mouth. Turns out unless you have an iron gut, that’s probably not a good idea as the garlic oils can be a little caustic on your stomach lining. So it’s advisable to down it with a bit of fat or starch. I read one technique is to drop a bit of olive oil on the spoon with the crushed garlic, but that sounded more dreadful to me than just the garlic alone. So I pulled out my favorite fat – peanut butter.

JIF to be exact. Should I be concerned about all the nasty molds and fungi in conventional peanut butter? Probably, and I do have nice all natural organic creamy peanut butter, but I’m eating raw garlic folks. Let me have my JIF.

So after crushing and mincing an average sized clove of garlic.

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I plop a tablespoon or so of peanut butter on top and use my fingers to distribute the garlic evenly throughout. Then, down the hatch!

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Would you believe me if I say I actually enjoyed this? It reminded me of a spicy Thai peanut sauce. Did my breath smell? Probably, but surely no more than if I ate a slice of garlic bread. Nothing a little teeth and tongue brushing can’t take care of. Did I emit a garlicky odor? I don’t think so. Jeff didn’t complain. Did I feel better? Here’s the thing…. I did feel a little better almost immediately. Not completely recovered, mind you, but the virus didn’t seem to materialize into a full blown cold which, 24 hours after first experiencing symptoms, it generally does. Could it be the garlic or is it just placebo effect? Who knows, but I’ll do it again tomorrow. I like Thai peanut sauce and at the very least I’ll be safe from vampires.

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