Cloves are very aromatic dried flower buds. They are a native to Indonesia. Cloves are used as a spice in food throughout the world. Cloves are grown in Indonesia, Madagascar, Zanzibar, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, India, and Vietnam. They are a species of evergreen tree. The flowers are a pale color when young that gradually turn green, and when ready to be picked the flowers will have a deep red color.
Cloves have many medicinal benefits. They are used in Western, Indian, and Chinese herbalism. Cloves are also used in dentistry. They contain a chemical that is a very effective pain killer. Cloves are also used to treat stomach problems. They are popular in aromatherapy. Cloves have antiseptic properties that are believed to fight infection in teeth. When placed on an aching tooth the pain will decrease. Cloves are mixed with ginseng to treat morning sickness, diarrhea, and vomiting. Clove oil is used to treat acne, burns, and other skin irritations. In Tibetan medicine, cloves are used in tea to treat multiple sclerosis. Western medicine shows that cloves are effective in treating tooth pain and reducing fever. It has also been studied that cloves may reduce blood sugar levels. As with using any herb for medicinal purposes please consult a doctor or herbalist first.
Cloves can be used whole or ground. When ground they have a very strong aroma. Cloves have a long history of being used in Indian food. They are often used in rich or spicy dishes. In Indian dishes they are often added to rice. In some regions cloves are added to spice tea. In the United States this tea ic called “chai tea.” Cloves are mixed in certain types of cigarettes in Indonesia. These type of cigarettes were out-lawed in the US in 2009.