It belongs to the liliaceous (Liliaceae). The bear’s garlic (also called ramsons) (Allium ursinum) forms large colonies in woods and fringe of forests. It is a 30-40 cm high perennial plant with the scent and taste of garlic. It flowers in April-May. It has oval bulbs.
The plant contains organic sulfur compounds.
The young leaves and the bulbs of bear’s garlic are used in the medicine. Those are collected in spring. The bulbs can be stored like onions. The leaves can be bought also in herb shops. It can be picked before flowering. Since it is a protected plant, please pick only 2 leaves from one stool.
It has appetizing effects and sustains the function of the digestive system. It is also known for its antihypertensive effect and reduces cholesterol. Thanks to its L-ascorbic acid contain improves the capability of resistance of our organism.
The traditional medicine uses bear’s garlic –similarly to the cultivated one- to prevent respiratory diseases and to cure catarrh, as well as an intestinal antiseptic or digestive. In spring bear’s garlic can be used for salads. Frozen it loses its special taste.
Though it is not confirmed by human clinical tests, bear’s garlic has an influence on blood sugar level and insulin production. In case of a treatment with medicine containing bear’s garlic extracts it is recommended that diabetics regularly control their blood sugar level.
External use: based on traditional observation we can state that externally used bear’s garlic works against fungal infections. On sensitive skin use it carefully, it can cause inflammation in form of redness or pimple. In letter case do not use it any longer. Try it on a small surface to avoid any skin-irritation later.
According to scientific researches bear’s garlic has an antihypertension effect, it slows down the deposit of cholesterol in blood vessels, improves bloodstream in limbs. In laboratory conditions the garlic and bear’s garlic reduced the cholesterol level in blood through influencing cholesterol synthesis, depending on the doses, the applied quantity of thiosulfate, ajoen and ditiin. The extracts won through organic solvents significantly decreased the cholesterol synthesis (even with 40%). Regular consume of bear’s garlic is the natural therapy in order to decrease cholesterol level and prevent several cardiovascular diseases.
It also has a slight blood thinner effect. It is not recommended to consume bear’s garlic if treated with anticoagulant, because it increases the risk of bleeding. It is not recommended to consume bear’s garlic before surgeries, and its regular consume for people treated with demulcents or anticoagulants is possible only under medical inspection.