MENU

Clove Health Benefits, Uses, Side Effects

Clove

Scientific Name: Syzygium aromaticum, Eugenia caryophyllata

Properties: Anti-fungal, Antibacterial, Anti-viral, Antiseptic, Antispasmodic, Carminative, Antiparasitic, Analgesic, Anesthetic, Stimulant

What is Clove?

Clove is an herb used as a flavoring agent in foods and beverages as well as a fragrance in cosmetic products. It’s commonly used to flavor pumpkin pie and gingerbread. Cloves are native to the Moluccas and have been used in Asia for over 2,000 years.1,2 As far back as 200 BC, the Chinese used cloves to freshen their breath. In the Middle Ages, clove uses included masking the taste of poorly preserved foods. Cloves have historically been cultivated in Indonesia, but they’re now grown in areas of Zanzibar, Sri Lanka, Madagascar, Pemba, India, and Brazil.2

Cloves are the dried unopened flower buds of the clove tree. They are picked when pink, dried, and become brown. When processed and dried, cloves become hard; however, they feature an oily compound in their flesh, which contributes to their flavor and contains many healthy nutrients. The leaves, stems, and oils of the clove tree can also be used medicinally.2,3

Clove Uses and Health Benefits

Clove benefits are vast. They contain antibacterial, anti-inflammatory, and antioxidant properties. Clove uses also include for treating muscle pain, respiratory problems like asthma, and intestinal bacteria, parasites, and fungi. It’s also said to help improve mental focus and creativity. An essential oil can be derived from cloves and used in aromatherapy or applied topically.4,5 However, since this essential oil is highly concentrated, you should always dilute it before using. Among clove benefits, it can help with the following conditions:

  • Abscessed Tooth (Dental Abscess) - Cloves have long been used to treat dental problems. It helps alleviate pain associated with toothache and contains anti-bacterial properties to prevent infection. Clove can be applied topically to an abscessed tooth, but it’s also present in some mouthwashes.
  • Bad Breath (Halitosis) - Keeping cloves in your mouth or applying the essential oil can help get rid of bad breath.
  • Vomiting - Inhaling the essential oil scent of cloves can help ease problems like vomiting and nausea.
  • Depression - Taking cloves orally or using the oil in aromatherapy is said to help treat conditions like anxiety and depression.
  • Altitude Sickness - Taking a clove infusion can help treat the symptoms of altitude sickness.

Clove Side Effects and Precautions

Cloves are considered safe when taken in amounts available in food. However, clove side effects may include allergic reaction in some people. Talk to your doctor before taking cloves for medicinal purposes if you have food allergies, liver disease, a weak immune system, or a bleeding disorder.1 

Clove is safe to take when pregnant when used as a flavoring agent in foods. However, it’s best to avoid clove as a medicine when pregnant or breastfeeding because there isn’t enough research on clove side effects on infants.1 Cloves may be dangerous to children when taken as an herbal supplement without a physician’s guidance. Side effects can include seizure or liver damage.1 A clove diet may slow blood clotting, which can increase the chance of bruising, so it’s best to avoid cloves if you are using other medications or herbs that slow blood clotting.3

 

References

  1. http://www.uofmhealth.org/health-library/d04468a1
  2. http://www.whfoods.com/genpage.php?tname=foodspice&dbid=69
  3. https://medlineplus.gov/druginfo/natural/251.html
  4. http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2003/12/13/holiday-spices.aspx
  5. http://www.herbs2000.com/aromatherapy/a_clove.htm
  6. http://www.herbs2000.com/herbs/herbs_cloves.htm
     

according to CuresDecoded worldwide community Clove Recommended For

Vomiting Effective
Nausea Effective
Depression Effective
Acidity Effective
Altitude Sickness Effective
Headache Effective
Post-nasal Drip Effective
Bronchitis Effective
Chronic Mucus Effective
Cholera Effective