- What did ConsumerLab find in garlic supplements? One widely sold garlic supplement appeared to contain little or no garlic, based on finding no detectable amounts of the garlic compounds allicin, alliin (a precursor to allicin that's most abundant in raw garlic), and SAC (a derivative of allicin). In contrast, all others had significant amounts, ranging from roughly 5,000 to 40,000 mcg of total allicin (including a portion of alliin) and from 27 to 12,900 mcg of SAC per daily serving. Interestingly, some of the products that were not labeled as aged garlic had higher amounts of SAC than the aged garlic supplements. None of the supplements exceeded acceptable limits of contamination with lead, cadmium, or arsenic, and products claiming to be enteric-coated were found to live up to this claim.
- Which are the best garlic supplements? ConsumerLab selected three garlic supplements as Top Picks based on their total allicin and/or SAC levels, overall quality, and value.
- What does garlic do? Health benefits of garlic include modest reductions in cholesterol levels (by reducing triglycerides) and blood pressure. It may also slightly reduce the risk of atherosclerosis and may help prevent colds, but garlic does not help treat an existing cold. Preliminary evidence suggests garlic may have some protective role with regard to gastric cancer in limited situations (See What It Is).
- Does garlic have side effects? Other than bad breath (which is a problem with fresh garlic, garlic powders, and some extracts but not a problem with aged garlic and some odor-controlled garlic), the most common side effect of garlic supplements is gastrointestinal upset. These and other side effects, as well as potential drug interactions, are discussed in the Concerns and Cautions section.
Garlic Supplements Review
Find the Best Garlic Supplements.
CL Tests Reveal Big Differences in Garlic Strength -- Some Have Little to No Garlic!
Alphabetical list of garlic supplement brands compared in this review
Kyolic Aged Garlic Extract Extra Strength Reserve
Life Extension Optimized Garlic
Nature's Way Garlinase 5,000
Solgar Garlic Powder 500 mg
Spring Valley Garlic 1,000 mg
Swanson Best Galric Odor-Controlled Garlic
The Vitamin Shoppe Aged Garlic Extract
- Which garlic supplements failed or passed our tests and why.
- CL's Top Picks, representing the best garlic garlic supplements based on amounts of garlic compounds, overall quality, and value
- Amounts of key garlic compounds allicin, alliin and/or S-allylcysteine (SAC) found in each product
- The clinical evidence for garlic supplementation for reducing cholesterol, triglycerides and blood pressure
- The different forms of garlic in supplements, including non aged and aged garlic, garlic powder and dried garlic, garlic extracts, garlic oil and black garlic
- Amounts of key garlic compounds in fresh garlic and garlic cloves and how these compare to supplements
- Garlic supplement side-effects, drug interactions, and cautions
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