Cloves (Syzygium aromaticum): Medicinal Plant

Cloves (Syzygium aromaticum) are evergreen trees that grow in tropical locations. The flower buds of clove plants are known to possess an oil with a number of medicinal effects including germicidal properties as well as anti-inflammatory, antibacterial, antiseptic and antifungal activity. The oil may aid skin disorders, may relieve systemic stress, purify the blood, boost the immune system, prevent indigestion, have anti-cancer effects, prevent damage from toxins and be cardioprotective. The reason for these wide ranging effects relates to the wide range of phytochemicals found in the oil of cloves including acetyl eugenol (the main ingredient, the dried buds of cloves contain about 15 to 20 percent of essential oils, and the bulk of this is eugenol, a kilogram of dried buds provides about 150 ml of eugenol), β-caryophyllene, vanillin, crategolic acid, tannins, gallotannic acid, methyl salicylate, flavonoids (including eugenin, kaempferol, rhamnetin, and eugenitin) and triterpenoids such as oleanolic acid. 

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Bhowmik, D., Kumar, K. S., Yadav, A., Srivastava, S., Paswan, S. and Dutta, A. S. 2012. Recent trends in Indian traditional herbs Syzygium aromaticum and its health benefits. Journal of Pharmacognosy and Phytochemistry. 1(1): 13-22

About Robert Barrington

Robert Barrington is a writer, nutritionist, lecturer and philosopher.
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