Black cumin seeds: useful properties and contraindications
Black cumin is a type of spice, which is used in cooking, cosmetology, traditional and non-traditional medicine. The composition contains more than 100 active ingredients, which provides a positive impact on the body and makes the spice particularly useful. But the benefits and harms of black cumin depend on the quality of the product used, as well as the individual characteristics of the body, the state of the cardiovascular, digestive, nervous system. Especially careful should be pregnant and lactating women, so as not to provoke the appearance of adverse reactions.
- What is cumin and what does it look like
- What is the difference between cumin and zira
- Composition and calories
- Useful properties of black cumin
- General benefits
- For Women
- For Men
- In Pregnancy
- For children
- How to take black cumin seeds for weight loss
- Black cumin in medicine
- Diabetes mellitus
- For pancreatitis
- For gastritis
- For bowel
- For constipation
- For the liver
- For hemorrhoids
- Recipes of folk medicine based on black cumin
- General Strengthening Agent
- Treatment of rheumatism
- For colds
- Black cumin in cosmetology
- For Face
- For Hair
- Culinary Uses of Black Caraway Seeds
- Black cumin flour: benefits and uses
- How to use black cumin oil
- Harm and contraindications
- How to Choose and Store Black Cumin
- How to Brew Black Cumin
- Interesting facts about cumin
What is cumin and what does it look like
Cumin is a member of the family of biennial umbrella plants. The height is more than 100 centimeters, and the diameter of the inflorescences - from 5 to 8 cm, and they can have different shapes and sizes. The spice blooms in early summer, but only in the second year after planting can you count on getting fruit, because the plant needs more than a year to take root and "take root", being infused with useful substances from the soil. Cumin is an unpretentious plant, so you can easily "make friends" with it.
Resistance to low temperatures allows you to do without additional shelter in winter. If you want to grow cumin at home, you need to choose a sunny side, and the soil should be carefully fertilized so that the plant gets the most useful substances for normal development of the root system and stem growth.
Properly grown cumin, which is full of useful substances, can be used for medicinal purposes or as a spice. Seeds and flour from the grains are popular.
There are several types of cumin, and each has its own positive and negative qualities that cannot be overlooked. Scientists count over 30 different varieties with their own specific flavors and aromas. But among the varieties there are also poisonous grains, so it is strictly forbidden to buy tinctures and decoctions based on cumin from unverified sellers. There is a high probability of obtaining a dangerous remedy, which can cause an allergic reaction and severe poisoning.
Only 2 species are the most popular: black (grown in the Altai region, in Eastern Siberia) and regular (grown in Western and Eastern Siberia, on Kamchatka and Primorye, in Belarus, Ukraine, the Caucasus, in the Crimea). But they should not be confused, because despite the visual similarity, they have different medicinal properties, and ways of using them are different. Black cumin is a specific species that differs from the common one, so you should consider it accordingly.
Usually included in complex recipes that are used for diseases of the stomach, spinal cord, neuroses, diarrhea, arthritis, gout, atherosclerosis. Effective with eye ailments as an antihelminthic agent.
Important! Black cumin has a second name - calindji plant, which is a sown corm.
The main benefit of black cumin is the high concentration of essential oils, which have antibacterial, analgesic and anti-inflammatory effects. Cancer prevention is a great way to strengthen the immune system, protecting the body from deadly health problems.
Used to treat neurosis, tumors, eye ailments, metabolic disorders, helps with body intoxication. Chinese medics treat caraway chronic cholecystitis. Used caraway in the food industry, added in the preparation of herring (spicy and marinated), sauerkraut, cucumbers, tulka, khamsa, tomatoes.
What is the difference between cumin and zira?
Beginner cooks or people who take the first steps in mastering the varieties of spices wonder what the difference between zira and cumin is, because at first glance the products are almost identical. In fact - these are different seeds with their own useful and harmful properties, so only an individual consideration of each will help to know the difference.
Zira is a spice in the form of arc-shaped grains of brown color. The plant does not exceed 50 centimeters in height, so you can immediately distinguish it from cumin. Apart from the bush parameters, there are also differences in aroma and flavor, as zira is a mild and even sweet spice with the aroma of hazelnuts, which allows the dish to reveal its flavor qualities. The spice is mostly used only in cooking, in which, of course, it is inferior to black cumin.
Black cumin is a bushy spice, which reaches a height of 100-110 centimeters. Its sharpness and richness of smell and taste combined with stinging notes are its main qualities.
In appearance, the grains also differ from each other, because if you look closely, black cumin has a relief structure, which zira does not have, as it has a smooth surface.
Composition and calories
Black cumin has become a useful product in the human diet due to its high concentration of amino acids, minerals and vitamins, which have a complex effect on the body, strengthening it. Among the main elements found in the chemical composition of black cumin are:
- Vitamin B1. Provides good carbohydrate and energy metabolism in the body, adjusts the metabolism.
- Vitamin B2. Affects the skin at the cellular level, improves the organs of vision and hearing, mucous membranes, as it neutralizes possible inflammation.
- Vitamin B6. It strengthens the immune system, speeds up the metabolism, which removes toxins from the digestive system and intestines, improves blood composition, it is filled with oxygen and useful substances.
- Vitamin C. Supports the immune system, has anti-cold and anti-inflammatory effects. The substance takes part in the assimilation of iron, so it eliminates the decline in immunity, which is important for normal health.
- Vitamin E. Regulates the work of the non-reproductive system, adjusting its functions. Strengthens the heart muscle, and at the expense of a powerful antioxidant effect cleanses the liver and kidneys. Free radicals are removed from the body, which significantly improves health.
- Vitamin PP. Has a positive effect on the skin and mucous membranes, reduces inflammation and has a general healing effect. It improves energy balance in the body, which creates a sense of stamina and physical endurance.
- Copper. The chemical element is extremely important for the normal functioning of the circulatory system because it is oxygenated, which improves the functioning of all organs.
- Manganese. The substance takes part in the synthesis of enzymes and amino acids, so the carbohydrate balance of the body is maintained.
- Selenium. The main advantages of this enzyme are considered immunomodulatory property, which is extremely important for the normal functioning of the body.
Properly chosen black cumin allows you to improve your overall health, which is considered an important medical benefit.
Useful properties of black cumin
Black cumin is a spice that has a lot of useful properties, but to avoid adverse reactions, you need to individually consider how it affects the male, female and child body. But we can say with complete certainty that black cumin helps for preventive and therapeutic purposes in such cases:
- The work of the digestive system is normalized due to the active release of gastric enzymes.
- Colds are prevented, as antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory properties allow you to strengthen the immune system.
- Reproductive system problems are eliminated, since blood circulation in the pelvic organs is normalized, which has an anti-inflammatory effect on female and male reproductive organs. For girls, the product is also useful by relieving menstrual pain.
- Ophthalmic diseases are prevented, which is proved by the addition of black cumin extract in eye preparations.
- Cosmetological problems are eliminated, because there is a direct impact on the condition of the nail plate and skin. It eliminates bad breath due to its antibacterial effect.
- Edema is prevented because the water balance in the body is normalized.
Black cumin has such a wide range of useful qualities due to the fact that it has a complex effect on the immune system, increasing its resistance and performance.
- The main benefit of black cumin for women is the versatility in cosmetic terms, as it has a restorative and analgesic effect, and the natural composition, which has a high concentration of essential oils, can improve the appearance.
- Menstrual pain is relieved because it stabilizes the production of sex hormones, regulates the work of the reproductive system, which is responsible for the subsequent possibility to get pregnant and give birth to a healthy child.
- Regular use of black cumin in food can prevent hair loss, making it softer, shinier and "fresher".
The spice has a positive effect on the reproductive and genitourinary system of the representatives of the stronger sex, so often black cumin is used to treat infertility, disorders in the genital organs. It has been laboratory proven that the consistent use of black cumin in the diet has a positive effect on the quality of sperm, as the production of testosterone is normalized.
Black cumin in pregnancy can be used to prevent stretch marks, as the oil extract from the spice has anti-inflammatory qualities. It is extremely useful for normalizing blood circulation, so the skin does not stretch, but always stays in tone.
As for the use of seeds in the diet, it is a useful antioxidant and general tonic, so the body of the future mother is strengthened, which is important for the prevention of various diseases. But it is important to remember that the seeds are hard for the body to digest, so to avoid gastrointestinal upset, it is recommended to wash them down with a lot of water, nonfat kefir or yogurt. But it is important to consult a doctor, as individual intolerance is possible, which can lead to uterine contractions with subsequent bleeding and a high probability of miscarriage.
Black cumin seeds can increase lactation, only it is not recommended to consume whole grains, they can provoke an adverse reaction in the form of bitterness of breast milk.
It is recommended to brew decoctions, which will be light in taste and very useful for the body. But it is important to constantly monitor the condition of the child, since each body reacts individually, even to the most familiar products, so you should not neglect the first "calls", if they appear.
There is no laboratory and scientific confirmation of exactly how black cumin affects the body of a child, so it is recommended to use it only as a decoction to avoid direct exposure.
- Decoction favors the respiratory tract (eliminates bronchitis and asthma), the digestive system (strengthens the stomach) and the brain.
- Useful will be baths on the basis of such decoction for the treatment of sweating and rashes of allergic nature, because anti-inflammatory properties are extremely useful for the baby's skin.
How to take black cumin seeds for weight loss
Black cumin is a popular product for weight loss, its saturation with useful vitamins and minerals allows you to strengthen the body, preventing weight gain. An important quality is also considered to be that the cumin cleanses the body, so you can count on the removal of toxins and detoxes.
Among the positive qualities of the spice for weight loss are:
- Diuretic properties allow you to remove fluid from the body, which prevents the appearance of edema.
- Metabolism is activated, which is extremely important for weight loss (dieting).
- Removed toxins, thereby improving the skin and the overall condition of the body.
- Regenerating properties allow you to regenerate the skin, have a complex effect on cellulite, smoothing it out and preventing its reappearance.
As for the rules of taking black cumin for weight loss, you should consider the following rules:
- Two teaspoons of seeds pour 0.5 liters of water and leave on a steam bath for 10-12 minutes. The decoction is decanted and used 100 mg 40-60 minutes before meals. This way the body is prepared for food and stimulates the production of gastric juice for the normal subsequent elimination of waste products.
- Black cumin seed flour starts the gastrointestinal tract and stimulates the metabolism, which will control weight. It is enough to take 1 teaspoon of flour once a day.
- Black cumin oil is suitable for rubbing the skin, because the excellent moisturizing effect improves the condition of the tissues. In this way you can more easily deal with problem areas.
Black cumin in medicine
Black cumin is actively used in medicine as a natural therapeutic agent, but it is important to initially become familiar with the effects of the product on a particular problem to prevent the occurrence of adverse reactions. An important quality is that black cumin is a versatile product, which is used not only in the diet, but also as tinctures, decoctions for rubbing and lotions, which widens the range of possibilities.
In Diabetes Mellitus.
It is scientifically proven that black cumin helps normalize blood sugar levels, so if you regularly use the seeds in an amount not more than 2 grams per day, you can reduce glucose levels. But it is important to initially consult with the attending doctor, since each type of diabetes has its own characteristics of the course, so a particularly careful approach to the composition of the diet is important.
Important: The glycemic index of black cumin is 5 units.
Black cumin oil has proved itself in the treatment of pancreatitis, as a mild effect on the pancreas provides the removal of inflammation, due to which the general condition of the body improves. Among the important positive qualities are:
- Relieving the inflammatory syndrome.
- Improving appetite.
- Providing a mild diuretic and choleretic effect to cleanse the pancreas and gallbladder.
But it is important to consider that during the exacerbation of the disease, the diet should be as sparing as possible, so the drugs of traditional and non-traditional medicine should be chosen particularly carefully.
Black cumin in the form of seeds and oil is ideal for relieving inflammation and provides an antioxidant effect, so in the treatment of gastritis the remedy has proven to be positive. In some cases, it is the oil that will be more gentle for the stomach than the seeds. But it is important to consider that there is a possibility of irritation, so an initial consultation with the doctor is required.
For the gut
Black cumin seeds in the composition have amino acids and chemical elements that contribute to the production of gastric enzymes, which strengthens the overall condition of the body, prevents the appearance of inflammation. The intestines are cleared of toxins, so you feel lightness and comfort. Not only seeds are suitable, but also flour or oil.
A slight laxative effect allows you to eliminate constipation, because the products of life pass through the intestines more easily, eliminating the appearance of irritation and associated inflammation. This can be considered an important advantage. An additional quality of the product is considered an ability to strengthen the intestinal walls, so later the problem of constipation will almost disappear.
For the liver
The liver is one of the largest organs in the human body, so it has a lot of work to do. It is a kind of filter, which allows to improve the composition of the blood, having an overall positive effect on the body. An important property is also considered to be the fact that for normal functioning, it requires constant purification of the organ from bile in order to prevent the appearance of complications and related diseases. Black cumin seed oil allows you to relieve inflammation and establish the flow of bile, removing it from the body without harming the person.
To treat hemorrhoids on the basis of black cumin, you can create a special cream, for the preparation of which you need 30 grams of seeds, which are previously roasted and ground. The preparation is mixed with 15 grams of black cumin oil. The resulting mixture perfectly relieves inflammation and has an antibacterial effect, so with regular use you can not only relieve the pain syndrome, but also completely get rid of the problem.
Important! The remedy should be used for 3-4 weeks to avoid a relapse.
Recipes of folk medicine based on black cumin
Folk medicine is rich in recipes for the use of natural black cumin for the prevention and treatment of diseases of various kinds. It is possible to allocate such most popular and effective means for the body:
For this purpose, you need to drink an infusion of 4-5 grains of black cumin daily, as it normalizes the blood system, strengthens the immune system and improves the overall condition of the body.
Treatment of rheumatism
To do this, you need to heat black cumin seeds in a pan and spread them evenly on a gauze bandage, which is folded as a compress and used to warm the affected area. Sometimes you can use flour heated and lightly dried in a frying pan or oven.
To prepare a tincture, you will need 2 teaspoons of seeds, which are poured 1 cup of boiled water for 2 hours, after which the remedy is drunk by 1/4 part for half an hour before a meal. Antibacterial and anti-inflammatory property allows you to strengthen the immune system, so the body more easily cope with colds and infectious diseases.
Black cumin in cosmetology
Cosmetology is another industry where black cumin is used in different variations: in grains, in the form of flour or oil. The oil is considered the most popular because it has a soft enveloping effect, so it is much easier to work with. It is used to create face and hair masks.
For the care of problematic and inflamed skin, you need to use the following ingredients:
- 1/2 teaspoon of black cumin oil.
- Almond or olive oil - a couple of drops.
Mix well and apply to the skin for an hour, then rinse with warm water. If desired, you can apply a nourishing cream to moisturize the skin.
Masks based on black cumin oil are ideal for eliminating dryness and brittleness, so their regular use can emphasize the attractiveness of the curls.
To prepare the remedy, you will need 1 tablespoon of black cumin oil and exactly the same amount of olive oil. After mixing, rub the oily mixture into the roots of the hair and leave for literally 15 minutes to soak into the skin. Rinse with shampoo and warm water. To avoid excessive greasiness of the hair, you can use such a mask not more than twice a week.
The usefulness of black cumin in cosmetology is high, as evidenced by the mass of recipes and positive feedback from girls. Therefore, it is recommended to be careful in choosing a recipe to get the desired effect of skin and hair restoration.
The use of black cumin seeds in cooking
Black cumin is a natural spice that is actively used in cooking due to its excellent taste, aroma and positive effects on the human body. Such a spice can be used for the following dishes, saturating their flavor:
- Baked goods and various salty baked goods.
- Canned stuff for the winter.
- Soups and broths.
- Homemade cheeses for spice and flavor.
- As an accompaniment to meat dishes and fish and to create a subtle flavor.
An important advantage of this spice is that it is resistant to high temperatures, so it retains its usefulness and nutritional value even with heat treatment.
Black cumin flour: benefits and uses
Black cumin flour is obtained by grinding the seeds to obtain a homogeneous structure. The saturation of amino acids and beneficial substances provides such benefits when consumed:
- Reduces blood sugar levels.
- Blood circulation is normalized.
- Improves conditions in anemia.
- Helminths are expelled from the body.
- Dermatological problems (acne and pimples) pass.
- Improves heart, circulatory and genitourinary systems, prevents kidney and ureteral stones.
- Increases the level of hemoglobin in the blood, which prevents the appearance of anemia.
- It has a calming effect on the nervous system, so it is easier for a person to cope with stressful situations.
- Skin color and texture improve, so you can become more attractive.
- The immunity increases, so it is much easier for the body to cope with colds and viral diseases.
But for maximum effectiveness, you need to use black cumin flour correctly, adhering to the following recommendations:
- For 1 teaspoon of black cumin flour take 100 ml of warm boiled water.
- 1 tablespoon of honey is added to the tincture, the entire resulting mixture is thoroughly mixed to obtain a homogeneous remedy.
- The mixture should be taken 2 times a day (ideally in the morning and evening) half an hour before a meal.
But it is important to remember that the product has its own contraindications, so it is best to consult a doctor beforehand to avoid an adverse reaction of the body.
What is the use of black cumin oil
Black cumin oil is a vitamin remedy, which is actively used in folk medicine, as it is almost impossible to overestimate its benefits. There are different ways of using the product, but comprehensively you can count on such useful qualities:
- There is a mild diuretic effect, so it prevents the appearance of edema and disorders of the urinary system.
- Inflammation in the stomach and digestive system is eliminated.
- A good muscular system is formed, because lactic acid, which leads to "clogging" of the muscles, is liquefied.
- The condition of the skin and hair is improved.
- Metabolism is accelerated, detoxes and toxins are removed, and fermentation in the intestinal cavity is prevented.
Harms and contraindications
The main harm of this spice is a high probability of rash and swelling of the nasopharynx, and allergic reactions are also common. As a rule, such a reaction is present when such contraindications are neglected:
- Previously undergone surgery for organ transplants, because black cumin essential oils can provoke rejection.
- Diabetes mellitus in the advanced stage.
- Diseases of the digestive system in the acute stage.
- Ischemic heart disease in the form of heart attack and stroke.
- Complicated pregnancy.
It is also recommended with special care to consume the product with hypotension, because the spice can lower blood pressure, thereby worsening the well-being.
How to choose and store black cumin
Black cumin is a year-round spice that has a long shelf life, so you can always buy it according to preference and need. But when choosing, you need to take into account some rules, so as not to encounter a low-quality product.
- The first is the aroma, which should be bright peppery or tart, as this is an ideal sign of a quality product.
- It is better to give preference to seeds, because they keep all the useful micro- and macronutrients, and, if necessary, they can be ground into a powder. Also, when buying seeds it is easier to avoid fakes, because you can visually assess the quality of the spice.
The seeds can be stored for no more than a year, and the flour or powder - six months.
How to brew black cumin
A popular way to use black cumin is to brew a tea based on it. But to get the taste and rich benefits it is necessary to brew the seeds correctly, and for this it is worth considering some recommendations.
Beforehand, it is necessary to grind the seeds into flour for convenient brewing. Then pour a little water over the mass and leave it to infuse for 8-12 minutes. Then pour the drink through a sieve into another bowl and cool. Use such a brew can be no more than 24 hours. You can drink alternative tea only after a meal 2 times a day, if you want, adding a spoonful of honey to sweeten the taste and make the tea drinking more enjoyable, as due to the pungent aroma not everyone likes such a concentrated drink.
Interesting facts about cumin
Black cumin is a spice that is popular literally all over the world, so it has a rich history and interesting facts:
- Cumin is used in canning not only for flavor, but also to extend the shelf life of canning, because the spice slows the fermentation process and reduces the likelihood of mold and mildew.
- The ancestors used cumin to fumigate the area to protect their homes from the evil eye and spoilage.
- The plant was one of William Shakespeare's favorites, which is why he described it in A Midsummer Night's Dream.
- Caraway reveals its flavors better when cooked, so it is better to warm the grains in a pan before serving with meat or fish.
Black cumin is a unique product belonging to the group of spices, as it can be used in cooking, cosmetology and even medicine. But it is possible to talk about the benefits only with the right choice and use, because there are a lot of nuances that can not be left unattended. The final quality of the product and safety depends on them, and unscrupulous manufacturers often violate the storage conditions of the product.
«Important: All information on the site is provided solely for introductory purposes only. Before applying any recommendations, consult a health care professional. specialist. Neither the editors nor the authors shall be liable for any possible harm caused by materials."