Health Benefits Of The Spice With A Bite - Clove And Clove Oil
Latin Name : Syzygium aromaticum.
Cloves are called laung or lavang in India.
Clove is a spice that is obtained from the Syzygium aromaticum tree which is native to the Malaku islands or Spice islands as they are also known, of Indonesia. It is also grown in India, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Madagascar, and Zanzibar.
Cloves are nail shaped and derive their English name from the Latin word 'clavus' meaning a nail.
The clove tree is evergreen and grows to a height of about 25 to 40 feet. Cloves, in fact, are the dried, unopened flower buds which are harvested when they are bright reddish in color. The flowers grow in terminal clusters.
Cloves were a highly traded spice in the Middle Ages and later in the 15th century when 1 kg of cloves cost 7 grams of gold. Later on in the 17th and 18th centuries cloves were worth as much as their weight in gold, since importing them involved huge costs.
Ground cloves stay good for about 6 months when kept in an airtight container in a cool and dark place. Whole cloves stay well for about 1 year. If kept in the fridge, their shelf life can be extended.
Syzygium aromaticum ( Clove ) Tree
Uses Of Cloves
Cloves are primarily used as a spice in most cuisines of the world. They may be used either whole or ground but are used sparingly as they have an extremely strong flavor.
In India, it is used all over the country but is very much used to spice up the North Indian cuisine. Garam masala, a mixture of various spices, has cloves as one of its ingredients. In South Indian cooking it is used to enhance the flavor of rice.
Cloves are also used to in the preparation of the Indian masala chai.
In American cooking, sweet breads like zucchini and pumpkin bread contain cloves along with other spices like cinnamon and nutmeg.
Cloves are used to make cheese in the Netherlands, often along with cumin; also the Dutch speculaas and stews like hachee.
Mulled wine made during Christmas in Europe contains cloves as one of its ingredients.
Cloves are used in the production of the well known 'Worcestershire sauce' as also in making of pickles, sauces and chutneys.
Unripe Flower Buds Of Cloves
Cloves In Different Stages Of Ripening
Ripe Clove Flower Buds Kept For Drying
Other Uses Of Cloves
The Indonesian cigarettes 'Kretek' contain cloves. In China & Japan cloves are used in making of incense, perfumes and soaps. Pomanders used for hangings during Christmas in some European countries, contain cloves along with oranges; the provide a fresh and great scent all over the house.
In a Jewish religious ceremony called Havdala cloves are used.
Cloves are also used as an ant repellant.
Medicinal Uses Of Cloves
In Ayurveda, clove is believed to have a warming effect on the body and hence is used in number of Ayurvedic medicines related to respiratory disorders like coughs, colds, asthma etc.
In Chinese medicine and also Western herbalism cloves are much used. They are used to improve the secretion of hydrochloric acid, to aid in the peristaltic motion and to remove intestinal worms.
In Aromatherapy clove oil is used for its warming and stimulating effects in digestive problems.
Dentists use its essential oil to kill pains due to its its numbing action on dental tissues.The oil apart from relieving toothache also kills the infection.
Cloves are used to control hiccoughs and strengthen the kidneys. It is useful in impotence, prevents premature ejaculation and relieves vaginal discharges as well.
Cloves control morning sickness, vomiting and diarrhea. They have anti herpetic action, reduce blood sugar and fever.
How To Check The Freshness Of cloves
A fresh clove will float vertically. A stale one will either sink or float horizontally.
Clove oil primarily contains Eugenol making up about 70 to 90% of the essential oil component. Eugenol is responsible for the aroma that cloves give and is anti inflammatory, antiseptic and anesthetic in action.
Some of the other components of clove oil are acetyl eugenol, beta caryophyllene and vanillin; some tannins like methyl salicylate which is a painkiller and gallotannic acid: flavonoids like eugenin, kaempferol, rhamnetin, which are anti inflammatory antioxidants, and some triterpenoids.
The dried buds contain 15 to 20% of the essential oil, mainly in the form of eugenol.
1 Kg of dried buds yield about 150 ml of eugenol.
Eugenol even in doses as low as 5ml can be toxic.
Clove oil can treat a variety of health problems like;
- Asthma and cough
- Blood disorders and skin infections
- In burns to reduce the sensitivity of the skin
Clove oil is also called Eugenol. Dentists use eugenol and zinc oxide mix as temporary fillings during root canal treatments.
Clove oil is used in toothpastes, laxative medicines and a dental solution Clovacaine which is used as an local anesthesia.
World's Healthiest foods Rating
Cloves, 2.00 tsp (4.20 grams)
Nutrients In Cloves
- Very good amounts of Omega-3 fatty acids, manganese, copper and sodium.
- good amounts of phosphorus, potassium, Vitamins C and K, choline, calcium and magnesium.
- small amounts of iron, zinc, copper, selenium, thiamine, riboflavin, niacin, pyridoxine, folate and Vitamin A and E.
Nutritional Values In Cloves
Cloves (Sygizium aromaticum),
Nutritive Value per 100 gms
(Source: USDA National Nutrient data base)
Percentage of RDA
Health Benefits Of Cloves
- The main use of cloves outside of use in cooking is in dental troubles. It relieves toothaches, gum pain and mouth ulcers. It removes bad breath and reduces cavities.
- Because of its antiseptic activity it is used to treat cuts, wounds, fungal infections like scabies, bruises, prickly heat, athlete's foot etc. Also used on insect bites and stings.
- Treats acne.
- It is an aphrodisiac - thus reduces stress and mental fatigue.
- It induces sleep in those suffering from insomnia.Also treats mental problems like anxiety depression and loss of memory.
- It relieves respiratory distress like bronchitis, asthma, cough, colds and tuberculosis and sore throat.
Chew a clove to ease a sore throat.
- It treats indigestion, flatulence, hiccups, nausea and vomiting even pregnancy related. It is much used in the latter case.
- It purifies blood, improves blood circulation and controls blood sugar levels.
- Cloves boost immunity levels and increase resisitance to diseases.
Some Specific Uses Of Cloves For Health
Take equal quantities of cloves and pomegranate skin. Grind both well. Take 1/4 th tsp of this mixture with 1/2 tsp of honey 3 times a day to relieve cough.
- Grind a few cloves with a little milk to make a paste. Add a little salt. Mix well and apply on the area of pain. It relieves pain. One can apply clove oil too.
- Grind 5 cloves. Add them to a cupful of water. Boil this till 1/2 a cup of water remains. Strain the water, add sugar and cool just enough to be able to drink. Take 2 times a day; once in the evening and then at night.
- Grind 5 cloves. Squeeze the juice of 1 lemon on the ground cloves. Mix well and massage this on the painful tooth for relief.
- Boil 5 cloves in 250 ml water. Swish this water around in the mouth 3 times a day.
- DENTAL DISEASES
In cases of tooth infection, keep a clove at the affected tooth or apply clove oil to that tooth.
If you happen to bite and cut your tongue, keeping a clove in the mouth heals the tongue.
- COUGH & PHLEGM
- Keeping a clove in the mouth will loosen and remove the phlegm. It controls bad breath too.
- Roast 2 cloves and suck for relief. This also stops formation of phlegm.
- VOMITING IN PREGNANCY
Grind 2 cloves; mix 1 tsp honey and lick. It stops vomiting.
- EXCESSIVE THIRST
Drink clove water. It reduces thirst.
Rub 2 cloves in honey and consume. It cures.
- WHOOPING COUGH
Roast 2 cloves in fire.Mix in honey and lick for relief.
Grind 2 cloves. Add 1/2 cup of water. Heat this water and drink. It relieves.
Grind 4 cloves. Add 1 cup of water. Boil till 1/2 cup water remains. Strain, add sugar and drink. Take 4 such doses. It stops vomiting.
- HIGH FEVER
Grind 4 cloves. Mix in water and drink. It reduces fever.
Drink clove water.
Make Clove Water As Follows :
Take 2 liters water. Add 5 cloves. Boil this water till 1 liter water remains. Strain. Drink this water frequently. Drink only boiled and cooled water.
Grind 1 clove and take it with hot water 3 times a day.
Recipe For Making Clove Syrup
- 1 1/2 teaspoons whole cloves
- 240 ml water
- 1 cup sugar
In a grinder, coarsely grind the whole cloves.
In a saucepan, combine the ground cloves with water and bring to a boil.
Remove from the heat, cover and let it stand for 20 minutes.
Pour through a fine strainer or muslin cloth and pour into a jar.
Add sugar and stir until dissolved.
Keep in the refrigerator. Keeps well for 1 month.
- If you suffer from acidity regularly, keep 1 clove in the mouth and suck on it slowly, once in the morning and once in the evening or take clove syrup. (Recipe for clove syrup given on the right)
- Eat 1 clove after meals in the afternoon and night.
- Take 15 grams amla juice, 5 cloves ground, 1 tsp honey and 1 tsp sugar. Mix all and drink. Take thrice daily for some days.
Any of of the above 3 methods can be tried and the best suited adopted.
- INDIGESTION & GAS
Grind 2 cloves. Add 1/2 cup of of boiling water. Stir and keep. Drink when cool. Drink 3 times a day.
Mix clove oil and sesame oil in equal quantities. Put a drop in the painful ear.
Aperol Spice Recipe (1 serving)
- 2 ounces Aperol
- 1 ounce gin
- 1 ounce Cinnamon-Clove Syrup (see recipe on the left)
- 1 ounce freshly squeezed lemon juice
- 2 dashes Angostura bitters.
How To Prepare :
Fill a cocktail shaker halfway with ice.
Add the Aperol, gin, syrup and lemon juice.
Shake vigorously and then strain into a cocktail (martini) glass.
Add the bitters and serve immediately.
The rosy glow of the bittersweet aperitif Aperol is warming enough on its own.
But mixed with a clove-spiced syrup, this drink is a standout.
Angostura also has clove notes, so you'll get a doubly aromatic effect.
Cinnamon-Clove Syrup Recipe
- 1 cup sugar
- 1 cup water
- 1 cinnamon stick, broken into pieces
- 1 tablespoon ground or whole cloves
How To Prepare :
Combine the sugar, water, cinnamon stick and cloves in a small saucepan over high heat. Bring to a boil, stirring to dissolve the sugar, then reduce the heat to low and cook for 10 minutes.
Remove from the heat; discard the cinnamon and clove (strain through cheesecloth if using ground cloves).
Transfer to a container with a tight-fitting lid.
Cool to room temperature before storing in the refrigerator. Can be kept good for several months.
This spiced syrup can be used to add :
- Depth to cocktails and nonalcoholic drinks
- Add a splash to club soda
- For desserts
- To morning waffles.
Some of my other hubs on Healthy Foods
- Health Benefits Of Grapes And Grape Juice Benefits
Grapes,also known as the fruit of Gods, are even advised for sick people. Have a look at some of the amazing health benefits of Grapes and Grape juice benefits...
- 6 Amazing Benefits Of Sesame Oil
Sesame and sesame oil is a health food. sesame oil is much used in Ayurvedic medicines because of its many health giving properties. To know how you can benefit from using sesame oil, read on...
- The Health Benefits Of Greek Yogurt And Frozen Yogurt
Greek yogurt is the current craze and is a healthier option than regular yogurt. To find out the how and why of it, read on...
- Tomatoes Health Benefits And Benefits During Pregnan...
Tomatoes are a phytonutrient rich food that are available the year round and are very healthy.To learn about the benefits of tomatoes in gout, diabetes and other diseases, read on ....
- Health Benefits Of Olives And Olive Oil
Olives and Olive Oil are very beneficial to health. Olive Oil is the most healthy of all the cooking oils and has a number of health uses. To know more about the various health benefits of olives and olive oil, read on....
Please Vote Here - Thanks
Did you like this hub?See results without voting
This hub is for information purposes only. Please consult your health provider or medical doctor before starting any new therapy or health regime or practice.
Clove Studded Red Cinnamon Pears
Mother's Day Spice Cake Recipe
Toothache Remedy Gum Pain Recipe Make Your Own Clove Oil Analgesic Oral Pain Reliever
© 2012 Rajan Singh Jolly
More by this Author
- 17Charoli or Chironji: The Indian Medicinal Plant and Its Health Benefits, Nutrients, Uses and Recipes
Charoli or chironji is an Indian medicinal plant whose seeds are used in sweet desserts and cuisine. They are also used in Ayurveda. Read to learn about its health benefits, nutrients, uses and more...
Divya peya is an Ayurvedic tea made by Swami Ramdev's Divya Pharmacy. It is a herbal tea made of a variety of herbs that offer many health benefits. Read on to learn about the health benefits of this tea...
Milk is a universally available natural food. It contains all nutrients necessary for our growth. Read on to find the health benefits of drinking this white nectar...