Vampires and Garlic
(Omaha, NE, USA)
I've heard the garlic is used to repel vampires. Is this because they just cannot bear the smell, or is it the fact that the odor is indeed toxic to the vampire?
If the latter is the case, assuming I eat a large enough quantity of garlic, would a vampire bite, that resulted in the vampire's ingestion of garlic-laced blood, kill the vampire? And if this is the case, since the vampire is injecting me with porphyric hemophilia would the disease be terminated due to the chemicals from the garlic?
Thanks for your question, Lester.
Garlic is indeed effective in repelling vampires. In particular, it is the chemical allicin in garlic that provides the effective chemical and odorous properties. As most people have noticed, garlic has a very strong smell, which in and of itself is not deadly or dangerous, but it does serve as a warning sign to bloodsuckers who are thinking of feeding on you.
When I say "bloodsuckers" I do mean it in a general sense. This aversion to garlic is not only seen in vampires but also in biting insects like mosquitoes. The odor of Garlic easily permeates the skin if you eat enough of it, essentially sending the signal out that you are not going to make a very tasty meal. Though you probably wouldn't be able to eat enough garlic to actually kill a vampire, it does have natural antibacterial properties that can harm one.
This is the key to garlic's effectiveness. Within the blood of vampires lives the bacteria that causes Porphyric Hemophilia. If a vampire ingests blood that is full of antibacterial allicin, they will be essentially killing off much of the bacteria that they need to live.
Assuming you could ingest a large enough quantity of garlic and a vampire decided to suck your blood anyway, chances are that the vampire would get very sick as its body would reject the allicin-laced blood, but it probably wouldn't die. You would still have a fair chance of contracting Porphyric Hemophilia, but you would indeed have a pretty good chance of your body killing off the bacteria before it had a chance to turn you.
Should you get bitten by a vampire, a combination of garlic and other antibiotics taken over the first 3 or 4 days after a bite would be the recommended approach.