Cumin also is known as ‘jeera’ is a spice that is made from the dried seed of the Cuminum cyminum plant. It is available in two forms – whole seeds and ground. Their seeds are oblong shaped. Broadly, cumin seeds are used in culinary practices.
Cumin as a spice offers a warm aroma and an earthy flavour. There are three different varieties of cumin namely, ground cumin, black cumin, and bitter cumin. Cumin and its essential oils provide several health benefits.
Cumin is a rich source of phosphorus, iron, calcium, magnesium, and manganese. Few other vitamins present in cumin are niacin, riboflavin, thiamine, and vitamin A, B6, C, E, and K. It also includes minerals like zinc, copper, and potassium. It contains low fat, cholesterol, and sodium.
One tablespoon of cumin contains 23 calories, 3 gms of carbohydrates, 1gm of protein, 1.3 gm of fat, 107 mg of potassium, 56 mg of calcium, 30 mg of phosphorus, 22 mg of magnesium, 10 mg of sodium, 4mg of iron, 25 of vitamin A, 1 % each of vitamin C, niacin, vitamin B6, and riboflavin.
Potential health benefits of Cumin Seeds…
1/5. Promotes digestion
1. The thymol content of cumin promotes digestion by stimulating the glands that secrete digestive enzymes, bile, and acids that are accountable for the digestion of food.
2. Cumin aldehyde, the essential oil content of cumin stimulates the salivary glands promoting the digestion of food.
3. The magnesium, essential oils, and sodium content of cumin offer relief from pain in the stomach.
4. Cumin is a carminative thus, it provides relief from flatulence. Cumin extracts help in decreasing the irritable bowel syndrome symptoms.
5. Cumin is also useful in digestive complaints such as diarrhea, bloating, indigestion, nausea, and morning sickness.
2/5. Reduces respiratory complaints
1. The anti-inflammatory properties of cumin help in reducing respiratory complaints.
2. The antibacterial and antiviral properties of cumin help in reducing cough. The relaxant effect produced by the cumin extracts helps in relaxing the trachea.
3. The essential oils of cumin act as a disinfectant thus, warding off infections and boosts immunity.
4. The caffeine and essential oils content make cumin a perfect anti-congestive for respiratory complaints like bronchitis and asthma.
5. Cumin loosens the mucus and phlegm in the respiratory tract and thereby, makes it easy to eliminate.
3/5. Prevents cancer
1. Cumin aldehyde, the active ingredient of cumin retards tumor growth.
2. The chemopreventive, anti-carcinogenic, and detoxifying properties of cumin prevent the multiplication of cancer cells.
3. Thymoquinone, one of the active ingredients of black cumin possesses anti-inflammatory and anticancer properties. It disrupts the inflammatory processes and prevents cancer.
4. Cumin extracts decrease the presence of tumour and arrest cancer progression.
4/5. Protects the skin
1. The disinfectant and anti-fungal properties of cumin protect the skin against microbial and fungal infections.
2. The presence of vitamin E in cumin decreases signs of premature aging such as wrinkles, sagging skin, and age spots.
3. The anti-inflammatory properties of cumin help in providing relief from skin allergies. It controls the inflammation due to allergies.
4. The antibacterial property of cumin kills the bacteria on the skin and cures acne.
5/5. Other possible benefits of cumin…
Cumin is also beneficial in treating insomnia, improving memory, reducing drug dependence, treating haemorrhoids, improving cognitive performance, accelerates lactation, boosting Immunity, reducing the risk of iron-deficiency anaemia, controlling diabetes, promoting weight loss, and reducing cholesterol.
Cumin seeds have been used in Indian to build up immunity and a great way to stay healthy during the flu season.
How to Use Cumin?
Cumin can be used in the form of seeds, grounded powder, or oil. It can be used in the following ways:
- As a spice in the preparation of curries, stews, sauces, soups, and other food products.
- As a personal Care Product.
- As a flavouring agent.
- As a Tea.
How to prepare Cumin Tea?
Take a pan and add 1 teaspoon cumin seeds into it.
Heat the pan for approximately 5 seconds on low flame.
Pour 250 ml drinking water into the pan and bring it to boil.
After it boils, cover the pan and do not touch it for approximately 5 minutes.
Strain it into a cup and enjoy it warm.
Add honey or a pinch of salt according to your taste.