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Breathing Quiz
Which of the following health conditions is not directly benefited by breathing exercises?
romatherapy Materia Medica

Clove Bud
(Syzygium aromaticum,formerly Eugenia caryophyllata)

© Kathi Keville, Mindy Green
 (Excerpted from Aromatherapy)

Clove was the tree that Pierre Poivre risked his life to steal from the Dutch colonies. Today's supply comes mostly from trees planted on islands off Africa by the British. Once established, the trees bear their woody buds for at least a century. To discourage Indonesians from chewing betel nuts, the Dutch introduced cigarettes spiced with cloves, which were even more harmful than tobacco by itself. A popular 16th-century Italian cologne combined clove with lavender, musk and ambergris. The 19th-century "Guard's Bouquet" was a similar formula, dabbed on handkerchiefs. Simply inhaling the fragrance was once said to improve eyesight and keep away the plague-European doctors wore leather beaks filled with cloves and other aromatics to stave off infection. Envoys to the Chinese Han court held cloves in their mouths during audiences with the emperor to sweeten their breath. Europeans, East Indians and Chinese still freshen their breath and eliminate toothache with clove. Its constituent, eugenol, kills germs and pain.

Family: Myrtaceae
Extraction: Distilled from the immature flower bud, or steam distilled from the leaf or stem. The scent is powerful, spicy and hot. Concrete, absolute, oleoresin comes from buds. The leaf is highest in eugenol.
Medicinal Action: Clove relieves toothaches, flu, sore muscles, arthritis, colds and bronchial congestion. It destroys intestinal parasites and is a good addition to a heating liniment.
Cosmetic/Skin Use: An antiseptic and antifungal, diluted clove oil may be dabbed on scabies or athlete's foot.
Emotional Attribute: Small doses are stimulating, helping to overcome nervousness, mental fatigue or poor memory.
Considerations: The oil is irritating to skin and mucous membranes, so use it in 1-percent dilution or less.

Associated Oil:
Clove Bark (Dicypellium caryophyllatum) --A small Amazon tree called Brazil clove, sometimes used as a clove substitute.

About The Author
Kathi Keville has studied herbs since 1969. Her attraction to fragrant plants led to an involvement in aromatherapy. Her other books include Herbs for Health and Healing;......more
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