What is a clove?
Clove is one of the essential spices used to enhance the flavour of dishes, cookies, cakes, and beverages. Besides enriching flavour, it has excellent benefits and medicinal uses, viz. digestion, oral health, diabetes, liver health, bone health, etc. It is native to the Maluku Islands, Indonesia. But now found throughout the world. In the manufacturing world, it is used as toothpaste, soaps, perfumes, cosmetics, and cigarettes.
Nutritional facts about cloves
It has essential nutrients like vitamins, minerals, fibre, and other macro & micronutrients. It is enriched with Eugenol, a brilliant phytochemical. Two grams of clove has the following nutritional value.
- Carbs: 1 gm
- Fiber:1 gm
- Manganese: 30%
- Vitamin K: 4%`
- Vitamin C : 3%
- The other biochemical substances in cloves are beta-caryophyllene, vanillin, categoric acid, tannins, methyl salicylate, flavonoids, oleanolic acid, stigmasterol, and campesterol.
Clove is a dried bud that comes under the family Myrtaceae. It is a herb known for its medicinal & traditional uses. It has many health benefits. Almost entire parts of the plant are used for one or other purposes.
Potential health benefits of cloves
- Full of antioxidants: This Ayurvedic medicinal spice contains antioxidants. These biochemical substances combat oxidative stress, thereby being beneficial in treating many diseases. Some crucial antioxidants in clove are eugenol, vitamin E, vitamin C, etc.
- Cancer protection: Many researchers have confirmed that cloves have anti-cancerous properties and are effective against oesophagal and cervical cancer. Clove extract, clove oil, and eugenol have anti-cancerous properties.
- Toothache: It’s a panacea for toothache. It is also beneficial for gum diseases and overall oral health. Mouthwash with ground cloves help to ward off germs plaque formation, and preventing the growth of microorganism. It may be taken in case of dental pain and other dental-related issues.
- Anti-bacterial: Cloves have anti-bacterial and anti-microbial properties, thus giving relief from cramps and diarrhoea.
- Anti-inflammatory: It has anti-inflammatory properties, thus preventing many conditions in the body, including oedema.
- Liver health: The moderate use of clove is good for the overall health of the liver. It reduces liver inflammation and acts against oxidative stress. However, liver patients should take cloves only after consultation with an Ayurvedic physician.
- Blood sugar: The clove extract and nigericin substance regulate blood sugar levels, thus beneficial in diabetes.
- Bone health: The presence of eugenol in cloves helps to preserve bone mass, increase bone density and strength, and is beneficial in case of osteoporosis. Cloves also contain manganese, which plays a vital role in bone health.
- Stomach ulcer: Its use is good for the stomach and duodenum as it facilitates the production of gastric juices
- Anti-mutagenic properties: It prevents changes in genetic makeup due to phenylpropanoids. Thus, it acts as an anti-mutagenic.
- Enhances immunity: the dried flowers of cloves are helpful to increase the count of white blood cells.
- Aphrodisiac: Recent research has shown that cloves have aphrodisiac properties, and Unani Medicine has verified it for a long time.
- Cure headache: When the mix of cloves and rock salt is taken along with milk, it ensures headache relief.
- Obesity: The use of cloves under observation helps to delay fat accumulation in the body.
- Acne prevention: Because of its eugenol content, it acts against pimples, acne, and wrinkles.
Uses of cloves
It is used as whole and ground forms. And an integral component for various dishes.
- As cuisine
- Hot beverages for aroma
- Red wine
- Ant repellent
- Treating of hiccup
- Kidney health
- Aphrodisiac properties
- Heals minor cuts
- Relieve congestion
Medicinal uses of cloves
- An effective medicine for toothache
- Also used as an analgesic
- To control fever
- Mosquito repellant
- Sexual problems like premature ejaculation
- Lowering blood sugar
Side effects of cloves
It shouldn’t be taken in case of the following conditions
- Excess use of clove may cause liver damage
- Blood clotting
- Immune system diseases
- Food allergies
- Should be avoided by kids