Can you eat whole cloves?

In this article, we will answer the question “Can you eat whole cloves?” and discuss its health benefits?

Can you eat whole cloves?

Yes, you can eat whole cloves. Those who have a healthy gut flora may be able to handle 3–7 cloves per day, while those who have an imbalanced gut flora may not be able to handle the potency of cloves, which kills a lot of bad bacteria but releases toxins into the bloodstream.

It’s critical that you eat a balanced diet (Eat a modest quantity when you start like 1 clove for 3 days and then increase frequently and make sure you don’t go crazy with it since it’s quite strong but very useful).

Clove is a rich source of essential oil [12–16% (v/w)] and phenolic compounds [8–12% (w/w) gallic acid equivalent] comprising hydrolysable tannins, phenolic acids and flavonoids. Clove oil and its major component eugenol [70–85% (w/v)], exhibited several therapeutic effects including antibacterial, antifungal, analgesic, antispasmodic, anti-carminative, antiseptic, and insecticidal effects in addition to their flavoring applications in food (1).

Clove is often used to enhance the flavor of your meal, however, the main purpose of this plant is to treat diarrhea, hernia, and halitosis. Intestinal gas, nausea, and vomiting may be alleviated with clove and clove oil. Toothaches may be relieved by applying clove directly to the gums (topically).

Various acute and chronic toxicity studies of clove oil (the main component of clove essential oil) have reported an oral LD50 of 3597.5 mg/kg and has reported no adverse effects when tested for subchronic toxicity tests, with an NAOEL levels of 900–2000 mg/kg/day. Oral LD50 of eugenol was reported as 2650–3000 mg/kg b.wt. Moreover, eugenol was shown to be rapidly absorbed, metabolized in the liver and eliminated within 24 h when consumed orally. According to studies, the absence of abnormalities or adverse effects observed upon the acute oral toxicity study of Clovinol (the main polyphenol in clove) at 5 g/kg body weight indicated its primary safety (1).

Cloves were one of the most valuable spices of all time. The dried blossoms of the clove tree are what we know as cloves. In the late Middle Ages, cloves spread throughout Europe and Asia as a key ingredient in local cuisine from the Spice Islands near China. Cloves are still a vital ingredient in many cuisines today.

Cloves may be ground or used whole. For a broad range of dishes, ground and whole cloves are often used in spice blends and recipes as an aromatic and flavorful addition. Curry, pork, and sauces like Worcestershire sauce may all benefit from the addition of these dark brown pods of flavor. In addition, they provide a wide range of health advantages. While the essential oil is mainly responsible for the characteristic pungency and aromatic flavor, the nonvolatile polyphenols provide bitterness and astringency (1).

Cloves: How to eat them

The concoction agent in the clove makes it beneficial for both internal and external applications. Before retiring to sleep, take 2 cloves and suck on them. Drink a glass of lukewarm water after this. Acne will be a thing of the past as a result of this.

Cloves’ Health Benefits

Beta-carotene, found in abundance in cloves, contributes to the spice’s deep brown hue. Carotenoids are potent antioxidizing and vitamin-building pigments. You need vitamin A to keep your eyes healthy, and carotene pigments are a good source of vitamin A. Cloves have a number of well-known health advantages, including:

A decrease in inflammatory response

Several chemicals in cloves have been associated with anti-inflammatory effects. Among these chemicals, eugenol is the most important one. There is evidence that eugenol may lessen the inflammatory response in the body, hence decreasing the likelihood of illnesses like arthritis and easing symptoms. Clovinol, the major polyphenol present in clove was reported to possess significant in vivo antioxidant, anti-inflammatory and gastroprotective activities (1).

Fewer free radicals

The antioxidant properties of eugenol are well known. Antioxidants are found in cloves. Antioxidants help your body fight off free radicals, which may cause cell damage and contribute to illness. Antioxidants present in cloves may help lower your risk of heart disease, diabetes, and some cancers by eliminating free radicals from your body. The antimutagenic property of Clovinol may be due to the inactivation of mutagens by inhibition of free radicals or activation of cellular antioxidant enzymes (1).

Reduced Ulceration

Cloves may aid in the prevention of stomach ulcers by reducing inflammation. A weakening of the mucus layer that protects your stomach lining is the most common cause of ulcers. Early studies reveal that cloves may help reduce the risk of ulcers and aid in the healing of existing ulcers by thinning this mucus. The antiulcer efficacy of eugenol may be associated with the presence of several factors that increase gastric mucus production and barrier resistance (2).

A Boost in Liver Performance

Another benefit of consuming cloves is that they may help improve liver health. Cloves contain eugenol, which has been demonstrated to improve liver cirrhosis and fatty liver disease symptoms in several studies. As a result, liver function may also be improved. Eugenol and clove oil have been documented to have a potent effect on fatty liver and dyslipidemia by a different mechanism of action, which involves oxidative stress by reducing the oxidative damage (2).

Cloves with warm water have several health advantages.

  • Cloves at night might help alleviate stomach issues such as flatulence, indigestion complaints , and diarrhea. Additionally, a healthy digestive system is essential. 
  • Antioxidants and antibacterial properties are found in cloves. Anti-acne salicylates may be found in this product (2).
  • Cloves and warm water may be used to get rid of worms in your teeth. Also, it’s good for toothaches (2).
  • Using cloves as a breath freshener removes the microorganisms that cause bad breath. The germs on your tongue and upper throat will be washed away as a side benefit of using this mouthwash (3).
  • It relieves discomfort and soothes a sore throat.
  • Before going to sleep, take 1-2 cloves of garlic with lukewarm water to help calm your shaky hands and feet. It won’t take long before you begin to reap the rewards.
  • If you have a weak immune system, start taking cloves on a regular basis. It has also been used to aid insomnia, memory loss, anxiety and depression (3).
  • Cloves should be consumed on a regular basis if you want to avoid colds, coughs, viral infections, bronchitis, sinusitis, and asthma.

To learn more about eating whole cloves click here


In this article, we answered the question “Can you eat whole cloves?” and we discussed its health benefits?


  1. Vijayasteltar, Liju, et al. Safety assessment of a standardized polyphenolic extract of clove buds: Subchronic toxicity and mutagenicity studies. Toxicol rep, 2016, 3, 439-449.
  2. El-Saber Batiha, Gaber, et al. Syzygium aromaticum L.(Myrtaceae): Traditional uses, bioactive chemical constituents, pharmacological and toxicological activities. Biomolecules, 2020, 10, 202.
  3. Kumar, KP Sampath, et al. Recent trends in Indian traditional herbs Syzygium aromaticum and its health benefits. J Pharmacogn Phytochem, 2012, 1, 13-22.