Holistic Healing from the Amazing Oil of Clove
The use of clove essential oils in healing and treating a variety of conditions is a reliable part of many lives but it still remains a mystery to some. The uses of clove oil transcend simple scent properties and offer a huge array of practical uses.
The Characteristics of Clove Oil
As with most essential oils, clove oil is derived from a plant’s leaves and natural oil secretions. Clove is an evergreen plant whose dried aromatic buds are referred to as Syzygium Aromaticum. The clove comes from a tree in the Myrtaceae family and is native to the islands of Indonesia and Madagascar, but other nations throughout Asia also produce clove oil. The flower buds form throughout the tree’s broad leafed foliage and begin as a pale white in color but turn red before being harvested. The trees themselves can grow to be approximately 36 feet in height.
The Types of Clove Oils
Clove oil is manufactured in three different types: bud oil, leaf oil and stem oil. Each of the three types has different properties but all are referred to as clove oil. The noteworthy chemical found in clove oil is eugenol, and its content percentage will vary based on which of the three processes has been used to yield the oil of the clove. The highest concentration of eugenol, approximately 90 to 95 percent, is found in stem oil which makes it the highest concentrated form of clove oil available on the market. Bud oil has the highest fluctuation of concentration ranging between 60 and 90 percent per volume. Leaf oil offers the most consistent purity percentage, but the content is still lower that of stem oil. Essential clove oil has trace levels of other chemicals in the leaf and stem derived forms, but bud oil also contains a sizable percentage of eugenol acetate and caryophyllene. These added chemical contents enhance the clove oil’s taste and smell, which is desirable in some contexts.
How Essential Clove Oil is Harvested
Clove oil, along with most essential oils, is harvested from plants through a distillation process. The distillation process can be as simple as using steam or it can incorporated complicated scientific methods such as Supercritical CO2 distillation. All distillations processes will yield the oil, but some of the advanced processes are said to enhance the properties of essential oils like clove oil. Manufacturers will typically promote any special processes used in refining the oil on their information website or on packaging, but if none is mentioned then one can assume the oil was retrieved using steam.
Overview of Clove Oil Uses
Clove oil has a very diverse array of suggested uses. The most prominent use is in the field of dentistry. Clove oil’s high eugenol content has both an anesthetic and antiseptic property. Using clove oil in cooking is a tradition long practiced in many Asia countries. The spicy flavors and effects on blood sugar levels make it a favored healthy additive among many chefs. Medical treatment of various skin, reparatory and internal ailments are other uses commonly attributed to clove oil’s natural healing powers. Clove oil has a distinct aroma that also favors it as an aroma therapy treatment for stress and headaches.
Clove Oil Can Help with Oral Hygiene
Dentists around the world have pioneered the use of diluted clove oil in relieving gum pain, tooth aches and bad breath. The eugenol content works as a numbing agent when directly applied to a painful tooth or by generally swirling it throughout the mouth. The antiseptic quality of clove oil fights bad breath by killing bacteria that causes it. Clove oil is used by some dentists, in mixture with zinc, to form temporary fillings before attempting root canals because positive evidence in this essential oil’s ability to reverse cavities has been well documented. As with all essential oils, clove oil is very strong in its undiluted form and can actually result in severe chemical burns to the mouth or skin. Be sure to seek the recommendations of a licensed dentist to find proper dilution ratios.
Chef’s Call for Clove Oil. Cooking with Oil of Cloves
Most frequently used in Indian and Indonesian cooking, clove oil is a highly potent additive that can create a distinct finish to meals. The aroma of clove oil is distinctively sweet, but the flavor is spicy and hot. The cooking of clove oil does break it down a bit, but the finish can still carry a distinctive spice heat unlike chilies or peppers. The original inclusion of clove oil in cooking may have been for its preservation abilities as an antiseptic but the resulting internal benefits to the body have kept it in high use for centuries. Clove oil is said to increase blood flow throughout the body, which can result in the raising of one’s metabolism or the cleansing of toxins from one’s blood. Scientific evidence of clove oil’s culinary uses are not conclusive, but many will attest to its nausea relieving capabilities when added in small quantities to food. Remember, food grade clove oil will have a designation to this effect stated on the package. Caution should be exercised before ingesting any essential oil that has not been diluted for safe consumption.
Clove Oil is Good for the Skin
The topical application of clove oil is very common and widely promoted for a variety of benefits. Topical application of diluted clove oil to cuts and scrapes is often useful because of the oil’s natural antiseptic properties that aid healing. Application to fungal infections, such as ring worm and athlete’s foot, is a great organic option for treating common conditions. Many have experienced dramatic results in the treatment of acne with clove oil. Some claim bruises will heal faster through the application of clove oil. The oil of clove is a popular massage oil additive because of its relaxing aromatic properties and its ability to stimulate the skin. If deciding treat injuries with clove oil, be sure to use a proper dilution and one’s physician should be notified to prevent chemical interaction with other treatments. If skin becomes irritated or inflamed, discontinue use and contact a licensed physician.
The Relaxing Benefit of Clove Oil
As previously stated, aroma therapy incorporating clove oil’s distinct aroma is quite popular. The pure essential oil can be heated in an oil lamp to advance the release of its aroma or the oil can simply be left in an open air container to naturally disseminate. The effects of clove oil’s aroma can relieve stress, or it can simply be used to create an enjoyable smell throughout a space. Some recommend the benefits of using clove oil in perfume in order to facilitate a portable aroma therapeutic situation.
General Health Benefits from Essential Oil of Clove
The use of clove oil in ancient medicine practices is widely accepted, but the results can vary from person to person based on the interaction of the oil with a person’s personal chemistry. Generally, clove oil is said to relieve headaches, fevers and treat common cold symptoms. Others profess to using clove oil to heal earaches and indigestion. Flatulence, the treatment of premature ejaculation and other erectile dysfunctions are some of the other benefits less frequently mentioned.
There are reports that the treatment of serious ailments have benefitted from the incorporation of clove oil, but one should consult their physician if considering applying clove oil to any of the following conditions: diabetes, cancer, cholera, immune deficiencies and poor circulation. The origin of clove cigarette smoking was based on clove oil’s use in treating respiratory ailments. However, smoking clove cigarettes does not avert the known dangers of smoking and should not be viewed as a healthy alternative to smoking tobacco.
Oil of Cloves Dosage. The Right Amount of Clove Oil
By definition, a product labeled essential oil is said to be 100% pure distilled oil from a particular plant. Essential oils can be easily purchased at health food stores, drugstores and many cosmetics stores. However, all essential oils should only be used for aroma therapy purposes in their undiluted form. If one wishes to experiment with the topical benefits of clove oil then it is best to purchase five percent clove oil. If one cannot find a five percent dilution in a prepackaged form, then one can buy an essential oil and diluting it in water as another safe option. The dilution should be approximately 10 drops per gallon of water. It may not seem like much, but pure clove oil is very potent and can easily chemically burn skin, mouths and stomachs. It is often wiser to simply purchase products that include clove oil rather than trying to administer it from its essential oil form. Many cosmetics, shampoos and soaps will contain safe amounts of clove oil that can bestow the desired benefits on individuals. Buying food products or packaged sauces containing clove oil is also a safe way to avert accidentally poisoning one’s self in the pursuit of good health.
Clove Oil’s Side Effects
Clove concentrate can cause liver damage, seizures and fluid imbalances in sensitive systems such as children. Clove can escalate bleeding in people with pre-existing bleeding disorders. If frequently applied to the mouth and teeth, clove oil can break down tooth pulp and cause serious damage to cheeks and gums. Clove smoke is toxic and carcinogenic. Improper dilution or heightened skin sensitivity can result in chemical burns and damage to the skin. Clove can also cause the body’s natural clotting agents to be rendered ineffective in some, so as a precaution never ingest clove oil for two weeks before surgery. Clove is typically safe when used in appropriate dilution and in moderation, but individual results can vary and should be immediately addressed with one’s physician. If one comes into contact with undiluted essential oil, immediately rinse the affected area with clean water for three to five minutes and monitor it for changes or pain. Be sure to store essential clove oil in sealable bottles that are properly labeled and located away from children.
The Characteristics of Clove Oil | The Types of Clove Oils | How Essential Clove Oil is Harvested | Overview of Clove Oil Uses | Clove Oil Can Help with Oral Hygiene | Chef’s Call for Clove Oil. Cooking with Oil of Cloves | Clove Oil is Good for the Skin | The Relaxing Benefit of Clove Oil | General Health Benefits from Essential Oil of Clove | Oil of Cloves Dosage. The Right Amount of Clove Oil | Clove Oil’s Side Effects