Garlic is a bulbous flowering plant in the genus Allium. Its close relatives include the onion, shallot, leek, chive, Welsh onion and Chinese onion. It is native to Central Asia and northeastern Iran and has long been a common seasoning all over the world. It has been consumed for several thousand years. It was known in ancient Egypt. It has been used as a traditional medicine as well as a food flavoring. It is a healthy and delicious addition to many dishes around the world. Its medicinal benefits for both cure and prevention require larger doses, which should be taken with the supervision and advice of a knowledgeable medical practitioner.