Scientific, and western properties and usage’s:
Cumin is native to northern Egypt and Turkey. Today it is cultivated in the Mediterranean region, Iran, Pakistan, China, India, South America, and the United States. The medicinal parts of the plant are the dried ripe fruit, and the oil. It consists of Volatile oils, which make up 2 to 5% of its total volume.
The chief components being:Cuminaldehyde, gamma-terpenes, beta-pines, p-cymene, and 1,3-p-menthandial. Its Fatty oil content makes up 10 to 15% of its total volume. The chief fatty acids being: petroselic, and palmitic acids. Its Proteic content is between 15 to 20%.
Cumin has demonstrated antimicrobial effects. It has been shown to retard the growth of mycelium, and toxin, or afla-toxin production in Aspergillus ochraceus, C. versicolor, and C. flavus. Cumin has also shown beneficial
mutagenic and blood-clotting effects. Other effects include: estrogenic, antispasmodic, diuretic, aphrodisiac, carminative, stimulative, and analgesic. Unproven folk medicine remedies include: usefulness as a carminative,and for diarrhea and colic, both in the human population, and in veterinary medicine.
Health risks, or other side effects have not been reported with proper administration of therapeutic dosages.
Both internal and external modes of administration are applicable. The recommended single dosage is 300 to 600 mg of dried herb, which equals approximately 5-10 fruits.2
Ayurvedic properties and usage’s:The energetics of Cumin are as follows: Its taste (rasa) is pungent and bitter. Its energy (virya) is slightly warming, and its post digestive effect (vipaka) is pungent. It decreases both Vata and Kapha, and does not overly increase Pitta. Cumin is used as a stimulant, carminative, diuretic, and lactagogue. It is also used in overcoming diarrhea and dysentery, when mixed with yogurt and water. It is especially useful for abdominal pain and distention. As it is useful in reducing abdominal gas, it is an aid to digestion and absorption, and helps to counter the effects of heavy foods, such as cheese, yogurt, beans, potatoes, or overeating. It is also used as an antidote for tomatoes, chilies, and other hot, pungent foods. Its qualities and usage are very similar to coriander and fennel, with which it is commonly used. 3,4