Frequently Asked Questions about Bear Paw GarlicWhy have I never heard of A. ursinum?
Because it's wild! Because it has never been domesticated, A. ursinum has never made it around the world as regular garlic has. And because of this, it has not been subjected to the publicity of the "garlic wars": the fight for a market share that has done so much to bring garlic to people's attention. It is, however, known in scientific circles and in Europe.
What is the difference between A. ursinum and A. sativum?
Both A. ursinum and A. sativum come from the same family and share the same active substances and benefits. However, the leaf is used in A. ursinum and the bulb is used in A. sativum. A. ursinum also has higher quantities of many of the active substances than A. sativum does and upon digestion has less odor. In particular, A. ursinum has more of the water-soluble substances.
Aren't allicin and other fat-soluble substances the only ones of importance in garlic?
No. Although allicin and ajoene are important, there is a wealth of research from Europe indicating that the water-soluble parts of garlic-adenosine, g-glutamyl peptides, flavonoids, and fructanes-are equally important, if not more beneficial than allicin. As well, allicin has known side effects and is also highly unstable.
What are these water-soluble substances?
We have briefly discussed adenosine and g-glutamyl peptides in this data sheet. Flavonoids are substances in plants that often have health benefits. Fructanes are significant because they are indigestible sugars known as oligosaccharides. Fructo-oligosaccharides encourage the growth of "good" intestinal bacteria.