An evaluation of garlic products available in Australian pharmacies–From the label to the laboratory

Publication Type:
Journal Article
Journal of Herbal Medicine, 2018, 14 pp. 61 - 67
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Garlic is one of the most commonly used herbal medicines worldwide. There is medium quality evidence to support that specific garlic formulations at specific doses have an antihypertensive effect in a cohort of individuals with hypertension. There is lower quality evidence for garlic’s hypolipidaemic effects. While there are many garlic products available in Australian pharmacies, it is unclear if these products are formulated based on the current evidence for use in such populations. The aim of this study was to evaluate garlic product formulations available in Australian pharmacies for quality indicators including: supporting evidence, labelling, product, safety and manufacturing information and the presence of key constituents previously identified as having hypotensive or hypolipidaemic properties. A qualitative evaluation of commercially available garlic products was conducted in accordance with the study aims. Thin-layer chromatography (TLC) was included in the evaluation to investigate the presence of alliin and s-allyl cysteine in both garlic products and raw garlic. The quality indicators evaluated in this study including evidence for the formulation used, labelling, product, safety and manufacturing information and key constituents varied significantly between the garlic products available in Australian pharmacies. These findings have a number of implications that relate to the formulations and doses chosen by herbalists, pharmacists and consumers who may consider using garlic products in the management of hypertension and/or dyslipidaemia.
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