Cloves are mainly known for its flavoring and aromatic properties. However, they also have great medicinal value that can benefit your body.
Cloves are well known as one of the best aromatic spices around the world. Native to Indonesia, they are flower buds of the tree known as Syzygium aromaticum. They are often added to dishes for its sweet, aromatic flavor. From hot beverages to spicy hot cookies and cakes, you can taste the flavor of cloves. However, not many are aware of its medicinal properties.
Cloves contain several nutrients like vitamins, minerals, and fiber. Eating cloves can help you benefit from this aromatic spice. Here are a few health benefits of including cloves in your diet.
According to statistics released by the National Osteoporosis Foundation, 43.4 million older adults in the US suffer from the condition of low bone mass. Low bone mass can lead to the weakening of bones, making it fragile and easier to break. Cloves contain compounds that help preserve bone mass.
Rich in minerals like manganese that is involved in bone formation, cloves provide about 30% of manganese in just 2 grams of cloves. Cloves also contain flavonoids and eugenol that promote bone and joint health.
Eating cloves is a great way to keep your blood sugar levels in check. Cloves act like insulin in the body by exporting the excess sugar from the blood into the cells. It helps in increasing the secretion of insulin, a hormone responsible for maintaining a steady blood sugar level in the body and also improves the functions of the cells that produce insulin.
Cloves contain eugenol that is known to have anti-inflammatory and analgesic properties. The spice is an excellent remedy for headaches. In case of a headache, the spice can either be consumed or used topically for relief. For consumption, mix clove powder with rock salt and milk. To use topically, soak the cloves in coconut oil and massage. These methods will relieve you of the pain.
As mentioned above, cloves contain vitamins. The vitamin C present in the spice will help strengthen the immune system. Vitamin C has the ability to increase the number of white blood cells in the body. White blood cells are responsible for fighting infections. Thus taking 2 cloves a day can help your body become strong enough to fight illness.
Cloves are a great source of antioxidants like polyphenols and eugenol. Being micronutrients, polyphenols lower cholesterol and blood pressure, improve the function of arteries and increases longevity. Antioxidants reduce oxidative stress that contributes to chronic diseases. Vitamin C in cloves also acts as antioxidants by helping the body to neutralize compounds that cause harmful oxidative stress.
Being a great source of fiber, cloves promote digestion and prevent constipation. The aromatic spice also increases the secretion of enzymes that help in promoting better digestion. To reap the benefits of its digestion properties, cloves should be consumed. The best way to have cloves is either in the form of powder or roasted in honey.
The antimicrobial properties in cloves prevent the growth of bacteria. A study published in Medicines, an online quarterly, proves that clove essential oil is effective in killing bacteria like E. coli and Staphylococcus that are capable of causing diarrhea, fatigue, and even death.
The antibacterial properties of the spice can be used to improve oral health. Studies were done to understand the effects of a mouthwash made of tea tree oil, cloves, and basil. The results of the study concluded that natural mouthwash can improve gum health and reduce the growth of bacteria.
Liver contains compounds that promote liver health. Eugenol which is present in cloves improves liver health. It was also found that the eugenol present in cloves helps reverse signs of liver cirrhosis or scarring of the liver. The antioxidants present in cloves also contribute in preventing liver diseases as it lowers oxidative stress.
The active ingredient in clove, eugenol is a natural anesthetic. The compound helps numb and reduce pain. Having inflammatory properties, it also reduces irritation and swelling in the affected area. Placing a clove above the affected tooth will reduce the discomfort. An alternative to this is the use of clove oil that has similar healing properties.
Cloves have the ability to slow down the process of blood clotting. The vitamin K present in cloves are important nutrients for blood clotting. Eugenol present in cloves helps to slow down clotting. Clotting can increase the risk of bruising and bleeding. It is important to note that cloves might react badly with blood-thinning medications. Cloves have many potential health benefits. The inclusion of cloves in your diet can help you reap these benefits.