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Nigella seeds commonly known as Kalonji in local language comes from a plant named Nigella Sativa. The name Nigella comes from a Latin word “niger” which means black. This plant is found mostly in southwest Asia. The plant is tall with blue and white coloured flowers. The fruit grown on the plant contains numerous small seeds of nigella.
Kalonji is most commonly used as a replacement for black pepper and sesame seeds. Nigella seeds have a mild nutty onion flavour but it tastes bland in the first instance. The seeds do not have any smell in particular. Apart from being used for culinary purpose, these seeds are known for having medicinal properties and health benefits too.
Health Benefits of Nigella Seeds
Let’s try to understand the health benefits of these seeds.
1. Filled with Antioxidants
Antioxidants are substances that prevent many harmful properties to enter into our body. Kalonji or nigella seeds contain such elements that help in the prevention of harmful diseases like cancer and heart related diseases.
2. Kills bacteria
Nigella seeds has antibacterial properties that prevent the body from getting infected or allergic to substances containing harmful bacteria. In case you are suffering from skin infection or are allergic to something, then you can consume nigella seeds to get rid of them quickly.
3. Protects the Liver
Liver is one of the most important organs in our body. It removes all the toxins from our body and helps to cleanse the waste. Kalonji acts as a saviour for our liver. Consumption of the seeds can clean all the toxins and protects the liver from any damage.
4. Improves the Blood Sugar Level
People with high blood pressure suffer from deadly diseases like heart strokes, nerve damage, problems of vision and weight gain or loss. Nigella seeds act as a supplement for balancing the blood sugar levels. The antioxidants present in the seeds may reduce the risk of diabetes.
5. Prevents Stomach Ulcers
Stomach ulcers are painful sores which eat away the mucus lined up in the stomach. This mucus protects stomach from the harmful reaction of the acids. The ulcers are formed when there is too much acid creation in the stomach. Stress and over thinking are also one of major reasons for the development of ulcers. Ulcers are very painful and the treatment takes a long time. Nigella seeds protect the lining in the stomach and prevents further formation of ulcers.
6. Has Cancer-fighting properties
Thymoquinone element present in the Nigella seeds have cancer fighting property. This element helps to cure various types of cancer including pancreatic, lung and skin cancer. The seeds also help to inactivate breast cancer cells. Instead of daily medications and treatment, Nigella seeds can prove to be a natural healer and can help the cancer patients to recover up to a great extent.
7. Reduces Cholesterol and Blood Pressure
Formation of cholesterol more than required can cause trouble in the body and can lead to various heart diseases. Consumption of nigella seeds help to lower the cholesterol levels.
Taking half a teaspoon of the seeds along with warm water helps in controlling hypertension too.
8. Fixes Skin problems and strengthens Teeth
Nigella seeds oil can help in fixing many skin issues like acne, blemishes, and pores. It should be mixed with proper proportion of sweet lime juice. For every cup of sweet lime juice, add half a teaspoon of kalonji oil. Apply this mixture on acnes or pores and it will reduce them to a great extent. Kalonji also helps in reducing cracked heels.
It is scientifically proven that nigella seeds help in keeping the teeth and gums strong. Surprisingly, massaging your gums with curd and nigella oil twice a day have shown good results.
9. Increases Memory
Nigella seeds help in increasing the memory. Ground nigella seeds along with honey in the morning can help to boost memory.
10. Relief for Asthma, Joint pain, and Headaches
For Asthma, it is recommended to mix nigella seeds in warm water and drink it regularly. Continue this cycle for a month or two in order to get effective results.
It is a very old tradition to mix nigella seeds with mustard oil to relieve joint pain. The mixture is then heated and when it comes to room temperature, it is applied on the aching part. The pain will go away in few minutes.
For throbbing headaches, rub kalonji oil on your forehead and relax for some time. The pain will disappear quickly.
11. Strengthens your Immunity
A proportionate mixture of nigella seeds, warm water and honey early in the morning is a good start to the day. Warm water helps in reducing the fats in the body, honey nourishes the skin and nigella seeds helps to kill all the unwanted bacteria from the body. Also, the fumes of nigella seeds dipped inside boiling water helps to cure nasal problems. This remedy is very useful for people suffering from sinus.
Facts about Nigella Seeds:
It is very important to choose the right quality of nigella seeds. Avoid buying the nigella seeds from any roadside store. Ask people for the best brand or best quality for the seeds. Do not store too many seeds at a go. A minimum amount of the seeds will help you to use it for a particular period. Too much consumption of them also has certain side effects. Take considerable and only necessary amount of the seeds. Be careful with the colour of the seeds. The seeds are pure black in colour.