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One of the most valuable spices that has been used for centuries as food preservative and for many medicinal purposes. This plant represents one of the richest source of phenolic compounds such as eugenol, eugenol acetate and gallic acid and posses great potential for pharmaceutical, cosmetic, food and agricultural applications. Clove is considered the number one spice when it comes to a true antioxidant superfood. A mere half-teaspoon contains as many antioxidants as a half-cup of blueberries. Studies show clove capable to reduce blood levels of inflammation in just seven days. Clove oil is also a powerful antimicrobial. Research confirms it is effective at inhibiting the growth of foodborne pathogens, certain bacteria, and fungi.
Clove has an excellent safety profile with few documented adverse reactions. Cloves tend to lose their potency quickly, so it is best to purchase whole cloves verses clove powder. The antioxidant and antimicrobial activity of clove is higher than many fruits, vegetables and other spices and should deserve special attention. A new application of clove as larvicidal agent is an interesting strategy to combat dengue which is a serious health problem in Mexico and other tropical countries.