You’ve been really tired lately, and at a random moment in your day you start getting the scratch in the back of your throat – the dreaded scratch that lets you know you did not escape the cold that was going around your school or work. You know it is only a matter of time before you start to experience the other symptoms. You are going to be down for the count for a couple days. All you want is something warm and soothing to your throat, and a miracle to happen. Well, you’re in luck as there is a concoction called garlic oxymel that helps to sooth your throat and boost your immune system. Keep reading to learn why it works and how to make it.
What is an oxymel and how does it work?
An oxymel is a preparation of mixing honey and vinegar with either medicinal plants, or in this case garlic. The vinegar used is apple cider vinegar, which is then consumed at the hot/warm temperature an individual is comfortable with. So how is it supposed to work? Apple cider vinegar has an immune-boosting effect because it is a probiotic and is rich in potassium, vitamin C, antioxidants, and vitamin E (all constituents of apples). Honey is composed of many vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants and is very useful in helping to alleviate a cough and sooth a sore throat, which is why your mom always said to drink tea with honey when your throat was hurting.
Garlic also contains a compound alliin. When the garlic is crushed or chewed it turns into allicin with the help of an enzyme in garlic called alliinase. Allicin is a sulphur-containing active ingredient in garlic. Allicin by itself is unstable so it is quickly converted to different sulphur-containing compounds which are the constituents responsible for boosting the body’s immune system response (Nantz et al., 2012). According to this studyk, garlic has been found to improve mental health as well as reduce heart disease risks. Garlic is also a prebiotic, so it helps to support healthy gut flora which will help aid the body in healthy digestion as well as overall health.
How to Make it
- 8 cups Water
- 1 Bulb of Garlic
- 1 cup Apple Cider Vinegar
- ½ - 1 cup Honey
Start by peeling the skin off the garlic cloves. Then dice up the cloves and leave the chopped garlic for 10 minutes to allow the alliin to convert to allicin by alliinase. While you are waiting for the garlic to convert itself, bring the 8 cups of water to a boil, keeping it covered with a lid. After 10 minutes, put the diced garlic into the boiling water, keep covered with the lid and decoct the garlic in the water for 45 minutes. After 45 minutes, turn the heat to low, add the apple cider vinegar and then honey to taste. Stir the mixture until completely mixed, then serve the mixture (garlic included) into a mug and enjoy. This mixture is stable in the refrigerator for up to a week and half.