Cumin Seeds: In-house Pharmacy
Repeatedly we take most of the things in life for granted. We hardly find the time or the inclination to appreciate the good things that come our way in our everyday lives. Like for instance from the clothes we wear to the food we eat. Talking of food, we disregard food that we take on a daily basis not realizing their utmost importance. We often fail to consider the curative benefits offered by most ingredients we add to the dishes especially spices. In this article, we shall deeply look into the benefits of cumin seeds and their therapeutic rewards.
A seasoning spice used predominantly in most Indian Mexican Cuban and Middle-eastern cuisine, Cumin emanates an aromatic appetising fragrance with a tinge of pungency. Adding Cumin seeds to a dish helps extract the natural sweetness that stirs the taste buds.
History and Ancient Folklore
The use of cumin as a cooking ingredient dates back to over 5000 years. This valuable spice has earned a mention in the Holy Bible, as the seeds used for payment of debts of tithes to the high priests. During Pharaohs time the seeds helped embalm and mummify the dead kings and queens. The spice had a great reputation of deepening feelings and bonds of love. Hence, it was customary for the groom and bride to carry cumin in their pockets for the marriage ceremony. According to Arabic traditions, a paste made with honey ground pepper and cumin was an amazing aphrodisiac. According to ancient Romans and Greeks, drinking cumin oil in huge quantities helped encourage pale complexion that was a valuable indication of a great intellectual.
Commonly known as ‘Jeera’ in India, the cumin resembling the fennel and caraway seeds is a herbaceous plant growing annually belonging to the Umbelliferae plant family. Known in Botanical terms as Cuminum Cyminum, the cumin, producing pink or white flowers bears oval-shaped fruits containing a single seed, which when dried, forms the cumin possessing potent curative properties.
Cumin Seeds: Chief Constituents
|Cumin seeds Nutritional value per 100 grams.|
|Principle||Nutrient Value||Percentage of RDA|
|Dietary Fibre||10.5 g||26%|
|Vitamin A||1270 IU||42%|
|Vitamin C||7.7 mg||13%|
|Vitamin E||3.3 mg||22%|
|Vitamin K||5.4 mcg||4.5%|
Curative Uses and Benefits of Cumin Seeds
Cumin Seeds for Digestive Health
Cumin seeds are highly beneficial for digestive health. Cumin Seeds enable stimulation of the pancreatic enzymes, which helps assimilation of essential nutrients facilitating good digestion. This is due to the substances cuminaldehyde and Thymol present in cumin seeds, which enables effective activation of saliva secretion including the pancreatic acids, bile and enzymes. Due to these digestive activities cumin seeds help prevent atonic dyspepsia, morning sickness during pregnancy, nausea, abdomen pain, diarrhoea, indigestion and flatulence. You can make a tea by boiling the cumin seeds. Combine the cumin water with juice of Coriander leaves and salt.
Benefits of Cumin Seeds to Regulates Metabolism
Cumin Seeds aids effective metabolism due to the spices ability to increase body heat. The spice also helps the liver to flush out the unwanted harmful toxins from the body and helps metabolism of fats protein and sugar in the body by stimulating the enzyme production.
Cumin Seeds Regulate Bowel Movements
Consisting a superior dose of dietary fibre including essential oils, containing traces of pyrazines, and Cuminaldehyde aplenty cumin seeds make a natural laxative accelerating digestion healing the wounds in the excretory and digestive tract caused by constipation.
Enhanced Liver Function
Used in ayurveda as an effective cure for liver diseases and enhanced liver functions, cumin seeds contain amazing detoxifying abilities. According to Research, cumin seeds boost the activities of liver protective enzymes known as glutathione-S-transferase, which helps detoxify the unwanted harsh toxins from the body.
Cumin Seeds Prevent Oxidative Stress
In comparison with other vegetables or fruits, Herbs and spices such as cumin contain intense antioxidants. According to Researchers in India Cumin’s antioxidants properties are more potent than that of turmeric, hence it has an uncanny ability to prevent toxic cellular damage by blocking oxidation caused by free radicals.
Cumin Seeds Boost Nerve/ Brain Function
Cumin has a traditional reputation of improving disorders related to the nerves. Containing abundant naturally occurring phospholipids such as phosphatidylethanoloamine, which apart from boosting the plasticity of the cell membranes also help repair and nurture the brain nerve tissues. This acts as a protector preventing damages to antigen caused by bacteria. Besides these cumin is also rich in crucial nutrients inositol and choline that encourages function of the nerves and the brain
Cumin Seeds Combat Insomnia
Since cumin seeds contain high doses of B vitamins coupled with the spices ability to encourage digestive health and relax the nerves help promote blissful sleep. The peculiar characteristics of cumin being a stimulant and a relaxant produce tranquilizing effects; hence, the treatment of ayurveda advocates the administration of a ripened banana combined with cumin seeds during bedtime for inducing sleep.
Cumin Seeds Improve Memory
The harmful free radicals in the body are one of the main contributing factors towards signs of ageing. The antioxidant compounds in cumin seeds however help eliminate these free radicals paving the way for enhance cognitive function, improved memory accelerating the recovery of amnesia.
Containing rich source of antioxidants vitamin A and C, cumin seeds are effective for colon cancer. With sufficient quantities of other antioxidants with anti tumour properties such as Limonene and Eugenol, Cumin seeds prevent the multiplication of cells in cancers of the colon and the breast. With unique anti cancer anti-inflammatory substances like polyacetylene and phthalides cumin elevates the glutathione-S-transferase enzyme activities, which eliminates the cancer causing carcinogenic substances from the body.
Owing to the presence of cuminaldehyde, a substance with an ability to reduce blood sugar levels, cumin seeds besides regulating blood sugar level boosts insulin action.
Cumin Prevents Anaemia
Iron a vital component of haemoglobin is crucial for health to perform various functions of the body. It is a key substance for regulating metabolism for producing energy and for carrying oxygen from the lungs to all the cells of the body. However, lack of this constituent causes various problems resulting in anaemia. Cumin seeds with loads of iron content help alleviate anaemia promoting optimal health.
Cumin Seeds Treat Respiratory Diseases
The aromatic essential oils in cumin play the role of a natural decongestant providing respite for respiratory conditions such as bronchitis and asthma.
Cumin Seed Prevents Common Cold
A rice source of vitamin A, C and iron cumin seeds increase immunity and keep viral infections at bay. Furthermore, the antiseptic substances present in cumin seeds help fight common cold by enhancing immunity. Since the spice produces heat, Cumin seeds protect formation of phlegm in the respiratory tract.
Cumin Seeds for Skin (Boils & Acne)
Boils are an indication of an accumulation of toxic substances in the body. In other words, they are a release for eliminating microorganisms and other toxic substances from the body. Including cumin seeds regularly in the diet prevents occurrence of pimples, rashes and boils. Certain constituents such as phosphorus Thymol and Cuminaldehyde present in cumin help remove the toxins on a regular basis through excretory system. Therefore applying cumin topically provides immense relief from boils and acne. A paste prepared with black cumin seeds and water applied to boils soothes the boil and promotes healing.
Cumin Seeds for Skin Disorders
Vitamin E available aplenty in cumin seeds helps keep the skin smooth with a youthful radiance. Cumin’s volatile oils contain antifungal and disinfectant properties preventing any kind of infections from attacking the skin. Applying cumin paste topically soothes skin disorders such as dry skin, eczema psoriasis besides eliminating fine lines wrinkles and burn marks. Topical application of Cumin paste prepared with vinegar combat pimples, boils and acne eliminating skin blemishes.
Cumin Seed Boosts Women’s Health
Oral consumption of cumin stimulates the menstrual cycle and acts as a natural contraceptive. Loaded with iron content cumin is excellent for nursing and pregnant women. This spice also offers a host of benefits to growing children, adolescents, who have a greater requirement of iron. In nursing mothers, cumin secretes milk owing to the presence of thymol. However consumed with a dash of honey cumin seeds prove extremely beneficial for pregnant women for healthy development of the fetus in the womb. Besides these, the spice helps easy delivery and improves secretion of milk.