Clove is a spice that is present in many kitchens for the aroma and flavor it provides. Now, did you know that it is also possible to prepare an infusion of cloves and take advantage of its properties?
Alternative medicine has been used for hundreds of years to relieve all kinds of ailments, such as toothaches, nausea or stomach problems.
Originally from the Maluku Islands, in Indonesia, the use of cloves has spread throughout the world. The aromatic herb that we use in gastronomy is extracted from the clove or clove tree, with the scientific name Syzygium aromaticum, a specimen of the Myrtaceae family, native to Indonesia although, today, it is also cultivated in Madagascar, India, Sri Lanka and Zanzibar.
This perennial tree can reach 20 meters and stands out for its lanceolate leaves and its flowers that grow in clusters, first exhibiting a pale color and later turning bright red. When it reaches this color, the time for harvesting has come, since the clove is extracted from the flowers.
Basically, clove is the dried bud of the clove flower. To make it, once the flower has been picked, it is left to dry in the sun (or in hot air chambers) for at least three days or until they lose half their weight and acquire that dark color that we all know.
Once dried and dehydrated, the clove is ready to be used ground or whole.
Also, it is worth noting that it is used to produce cigars and incense in Eastern cultures.
Health properties of clove
Ayurveda medicine has used clove for many years to relieve various discomforts. For example, a fairly common remedy is to place a clove on the tooth that hurts or drink an infusion of clove when suffering from indigestion. However, is it really an effective natural remedy? Next, we will discuss its different health benefits.
Provides different nutrients
Clove is rich in minerals such as potassium, calcium, and magnesium, as well as vitamins, such as vitamin K and B, and Omega-3 fatty acids. However, it is worth emphasizing that clove has a very intense flavor and, therefore, its use is very moderate, thus also its nutritional contribution.
Containing vitamin K, cloves would be beneficial in maintaining good blood coagulation. Remember that the body uses this vitamin to carry out this process. In fact, vitamin K supplements are often used to address clotting problems in newborns, as well as in the case of “thinning” of the blood.
In this way, drinking an infusion of cloves would be a good way to take care of preventing the appearance of hemorrhages.
Natural medicine experts have recommended the use of clove tea for years to prevent microbial infections in the mouth and digestive tract. Although there is no scientific data on this, some studies have proven that clove oil has strong antimicrobial actions; therefore, it could be inferred that the same potential is present in the infusion.
Its high content of antioxidant substances, such as eugenol and vitamin E, make it a good option to prevent all kinds of diseases. This is because antioxidants are substances that fight free radicals to reduce oxidative stress that affects cells and produces degenerative diseases.
Its carminative action combined with the increase in hydrochloric acid in the stomach compared to the intake of an infusion of cloves, make it a good option to improve digestion and prevent discomfort such as indigestion, heavy digestion or gas.
Do you have a cough and runny nose? A good way to contribute to the elimination of the mucus that generates the annoying cough is to ingest an infusion of clove irregularly, since it helps to fluidize the mucus and, later, expectorate it.
Eugenol, one of the main components of clove, is a proven pain reliever. Thus, drinking an infusion of cloves could act against pain in different parts of the body, relieving both migraine and dental, menstrual pain or pain caused by inflammation.
It is a powerful aphrodisiac
Unfortunately, we have not been able to find scientific references to support it, but did you know that drinking clove tea is said to stimulate sexual appetite? For this reason, it is widely consumed in Eastern cultures for this purpose.
Contributes to the detoxification of the body
Although the data is scarce, some studies have concluded that eugenol would act by favoring the reduction of the levels of glutathione-S-transferases and the elimination of waste substances.
Control blood sugar levels
A small animal study found that clove consumption markedly lowered blood sugar levels by improving the body’s insulin function. Studies on humans are necessary to corroborate this fact.
How to prepare a clove infusion
Making an infusion of this spice is very simple. However, it is difficult to determine the amount of cloves to use, since it is an herb with a very strong flavor and aroma. For this reason, we recommend you try the infusion as we recommend it and, if you find it too concentrated, add water and the next time, reduce the dose of cloves.
- 1 liter of water
- 10 grams of cloves (approximately 4 teaspoons of ground clove powder)
- Bring the water to a boil.
- When the water begins to boil, add the cloves.
- Let decoct 10 minutes.
- Turn off the heat and let the temperature drop for 3 more minutes.
- Strain, sweeten with honey and drink.
Take advantage of all the properties of the clove infusion and enjoy a tasty hot drink. We advise you to add a little honey to slightly soften the powerful presence of its liquor in the mouth.