National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health (NCCIH)
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Most Used Natural Products

0.8% of U.S. adults (1.9 million) used
garlic supplements

The use of garlic supplements by adults in the United States fell by about 41% between 2007 and 2012. Nearly 1.4 million fewer adults used garlic supplements in 2012 than in 2007.

Garlic is the edible bulb from a plant in the lily family. Taking garlic may slightly lower blood pressure, particularly in people with high blood pressure, but it’s unclear if it also lowers cholesterol. It can reduce the ability of blood to clot (like aspirin), which may be a problem during or after surgery. There’s no rigorous scientific evidence that taking garlic supplements treats or prevents the common cold.

Read more about garlic.

Adults

4 Citation: Clarke TC, Black LI, Stussman BJ, Barnes PM, Nahin RL. Trends in the use of complementary health approaches among adults: United States, 2002–2012. National health statistics reports; no 79. Hyattsville, MD: National Center for Health Statistics. 2015. (240KB PDF)

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Most Used Natural Products

0.1% of U.S. children (80,000) used
garlic supplements

There was little change between 2007 and 2012 in the number of children in the United States using garlic supplements. About 2,000 more children used garlic supplements in 2012 than in 2007.

Garlic is the edible bulb from a plant in the lily family. Side effects of ingesting garlic may include breath and body odor, heartburn, upset stomach, and allergic reactions. These side effects are more common with raw garlic. Parents should be aware that many complementary health approaches have not been tested for safety or effectiveness in children.

Read more about garlic.

Children

5 Citation: Black LI, Clarke TC, Barnes PM, Stussman BJ, Nahin RL. Use of complementary health approaches among children aged 4-17 years in the United States: National Health Interview Survey, 2007-2012. National health statistics reports; no 78. Hyattsville, MD: National Center for Health Statistics. 2015. (229KB PDF)

* Note: PDF files require a viewer such as the free Adobe Reader.

This page last modified September 24, 2017