Clove - health benefitsClove or laung is a common spice added to most Indian dishes, but this tiny, brown spice is much more than just an additive. Packed with nutrients like vitamins and minerals like iodine, calcium, phosphorous and iron, clove can do much more for your body than simply make food more palatable. Here are the top 10 reasons to add clove to your daily diet. 

1. Lowers your blood sugar and keeps diabetes at bay: According to a study conducted by Dr. Alam Khan in 2006 [2], clove is great to lower ones blood sugar and keep diabetes under check. Clove works by inducing an insulin-like activity in the body that helps beat insulin resistance thereby improving one’s blood sugar levels. The study also showed that eating clove on a regular basis can help in keeping diabetes at bay. Want to read about more natural ways to keep your blood sugar under check? Here are the top 10 herbal remedies for diabetes.

Tip: If you suffer from diabetes and want to keep your blood sugar levels in under control naturally, try eating clove on a daily basis. Alternatively you could try consuming about ten grams of clove powder with warm water, on an empty stomach everyday. 

2. Helps improve digestion: Clove has carmative properties and is great in improving your ability to digest food. This is also one of the reasons this spice is added to a number of foods and is offered as a mouth freshener after a meal. Apart from this, the essential oils in clove are also highly effective in fighting stomach ulcers, reduce inflammation and are known to kill bacteria within the stomach – thereby keeping stomach infections at bay. Read more about yoga asanas for better digestion.

Tip: The best way to harness the positive qualities of clove is to add it to your daily meal. You can add it as a powder, whole or use its oil extract.  Another great way is to eat it whole after every meal. All you need to do is take a single clove and bite into it once and keep it at the back of your mouth till it disintegrates. Avoid chewing it too many times, as it can be very pungent and difficult to eat. This slow release of its essential oils helps your salivary glands produce more saliva and therefore aids in the digestion process.

3. Can relieve acidity: For people with acidity, clove can be a life saver. Not only does it help improve digestion but also coats your stomach and throat with mucous that can significantly reduce the symptoms of acidity. Apart from that, clove also improves peristalsis (the action of muscle contraction to keep food within the stomach) and keeps acid from rising into your throat. There are a number of other methods to beat acidity. Read more about the top 10 home remedies to relieve acidity.

Tip: In case of acidity chew on clove right after a meal. You should ideally drink only water and avoid eating anything sweet or aerated while while chewing on clove.

4. Can lower your cholesterol levels: According to a study published by the American Heart Association [1], clove has a significant effect in reducing one’s cholesterol. The study stated that the innate properties of clove help stimulate certain enzymatic  activity in the body that helps reduce the triglyceride content in your body and lower cholesterol levels. It is believed that just about 10 grams of clove powder in one’s daily meal can greatly reduce cholesterol levels thereby protecting the body from the ill effects of high cholesterol. Wondering what your cholesterol report mens? Here are all the common questions about cholesterol answered. 

Tip:  You could either add a teaspoon of clove powder to your daily meals, chew it whole after every meal or eat its powder with warm water every morning, on an empty stomach to see a considerable drop in your cholesterol levels. 

5. Beats tooth ache, bad breath and maintains your overall oral hygiene: One of the oldest remedy for a tooth ache is chewing clove or applying clove oil to an aching tooth. But have you ever wondered how it works? Well, clove oil or clove itself contains potent anti inflammatory components that help reduce the swelling around an infected tooth. It not only kills harmful bacteria in ones mouth, but also helps to numb out the pain one feels. Apart from that it also beats bad breath by cleaning the tongue, palate (the top of your mouth) and the upper part of your throat of any bacteria and decaying matter. Its strong aromatic qualities also alter the smell within the mouth helping with foul breath. Known for its ability to kill bacteria associated with common dental problems, clove is also great in maintaining your overall oral hygiene. There are other remedies to fight bad breath. Here are top tips to fight bad breath.

Tip: If you suffer from a tooth ache, try applying some clove oil or chewing on a whole clove for instant relief from the pain. You could also chew on clove or gargle with clove solution to beat bad breath. To make the solution, boil a few cloves in water for a few minutes, allow it to stand for about two minutes and then strain the solution. Once it has cooled down you can use it as a mouthwash after every meal. 

6. Helps you breathe free:  Clove is packed with a number of amazing components and one of the most important one is eugenol. Known to have expectorant properties the component is the key to relieving a congested chest or sinuses. Apart from that clove also has anti-bacterial and anti-fungal properties that helps to wipe out infections. In Ayurveda clove is a warm spice and is known to spread warmth around the area it comes into contact with, therefore it is a great natural way to loosen up congested phlegm. Want instant relief from a cough? Here are some quick home remedies. 

Tip: Crush three to four pieces of clove, add one pepper corn and a little bit of tulsi to the mix. Add about 200 mil of water, and boil till it is half its quantity. You may add a small piece of ginger to the mix as well. Once the decoction is ready strain it and drink it with a little honey to add that extra sweetness.

7. Can relieve joint pain: Laung is known to have a pain killing effect and can beat inflammation as well. The spice is known to spread a warm sensation over the area applied and is great in helping muscles relax. This is one of the reasons that it is a great way to beat arthritic, rheumatic and any other kind of joint pain. Suffering from arthritis? Here are yoga asanas that can help you beat the symptoms. 

Tip: All you need to do is roast a few cloves, and wrap them in a soft cloth. Apply this to the aching joint while it is still warm. Re-heat the poultice when it becomes cold. You could alternatively crush the cloves coarsely and apply it. But make sure you do not heat it after they are crushed. The essential oils present in the clove are highly volatile and will evaporate if heated again.

Another way is to add a few drops of the essential oils to your bath water and soak in the warm water to relieve pain. Alternatively you could crush clove, tie them in a soft muslin cloth and suspend it in warm bath water. This way your bath water will have a constant supply of clove oil.

8. Beats a sore throat: The main function of clove in remedying sore throat is that it act as an anti-bacterial agent and help beat the pain associated with a sore throat. It also helps soothe the itch y feeling one feels during a sore throat and helps to resolve the condition quickly due to its anti-bacterial properties. 

Tip: Take a pod of clove and add it to a spoon of honey. Let it remain in the honey for about 8 hours and drink slowly swallow the honey. This will coat the throat helping in giving you some relief.

9. Helps you relax and fight stress: Due to its strong yet soothing aroma, clove is great to help you relax. Eugenol — abundantly present in clove — is also a well known muscle relaxant and can relax even the most tense muscles. A known potent aphrodisiac, clove also helps to awaken your senses and put you in the mood for some fun! 

Tip: After that long tiring day, try adding a few drops of clove oil to your bath water to help you relax while you have a long relaxing soak. You could also use it as a natural room freshener that will not only keep your spirits up but will also help keep away the ill effects of artificial room fresheners. 

10. Gives you clear skin: If you are sick of using various creams to get rid of blemishes your search ends here. Clove is a great and almost instant method to get rid of blemishes and pimples, because of its anti-bacterial and anti-inflammatory properties. It also is known to be very effective in keeping blemishes or marks that usually appear after a pimple has subsided. There are other naturl ways to have acne free skin. Here are some of the top remedies. 

Tip: Crush a few cloves of clove, add one table spoon of honey and the juice of quarter a lemon to the mix. Now apply this on your face and leave it on for about 20 minutes. Then wash off the paste with cold water.  

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