Why eating Ajwain is the best thing you ever did

Trachyspermum ammi commonly known as ajwain or carom seeds is native to Egypt but it also grown in Iraq, Iran, Afghanistan, Pakistan, and India. Best known for its peculiar taste and odour it is extensively used in culinary preparations. Ajwain has been used in home remedies since centuries for conditions such as bowel irregularity, gas problems, as well as skin ailments. In traditional persian medicine, ear and eye drop formulations of ajwain have been used.(1)

Health benefits of ajwain

  • Antibacterial and antifungal properties

The antibiotic activities of ajwain have been tested against several organism such as Enterococcus faecalis, Escherichia coli, Klebsiella pneumonia, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, Salmonella typhi, Salmonella typhimurium, Shigella flexneri, and Staphylococcus  aureus. Thus, making it an effective therapeutic option against infections. (2)

  • Ajwain for urinary stones

A study on individuals with urinary stones revealed ajwain to be effective when decocted with milk and given to volunteers for nine consecutive days. (3)

  • Ajwain helps reduce cholesterol

Increasing levels of blood lipids are one of the most common causes of heart diseases. Research has shown the consumption of powdered ajwain seeds to not only help reduce total cholesterol, LDL-cholesterol (which is unhealthy for the body), triglycerides, and total lipids but also increase HDL-cholesterol (which is good for heart health). (4)

  • Ajwain traditionally used for digestive problems

This herb has been used for stomach related issues for several decades. Studies reveal that ajwain stimulates gastric and bile acids secretion and enhances the digestive enzyme activities, thus reducing the food transient time. (5)

  • Ajwain effective in hormonal imbalance

This plant has the second highest phytoestrogen content among the other plants tested for the same. This indicates its efficacy in treating hormonal disorders in women. Ajwain seeds are given orally to women post-pregnancy in India. (6, 7)

Side effects

Ajwain is routinely used in culinary preparations and mostly reported to be safe and without any adverse effects. However, its excess intake (more than 10 grams a day) may lead to nausea, acidiy, or vomiting. Ajwain should be avoided if you have stomach or mouth ulcers and constipation.

References

  1. Bairwa R, Sodha RS, Rajawat BS. Trachyspermum ammi. Pharmacogn Rev. 2012; 6: 56.
  2. Zarshenas MM, Moein M, Samani SM, et al. An overview on ajwain (Trachyspermum ammi) pharmacological effects; modern and traditional. J Nat Remedies. 2013; 14: 98-105.
  3. Sabar AG. Lithotripsy of different urinary tract stones by using seeds of Carum copticum. Iraqi j pharm Sci. 2010; 19: 38-41.
  4. Javed I, Iqbal Z, Rahman ZU, et al. Comparative antihyperlipidaemic efficacy of Trachyspermum ammi extracts in albino rabbits. Pak Vet J. 2006; 26: 23.
  5. Ramaswamy S, Sengottuvelu S, et al. Gastroprotective activity of ethanolic extract of Trachyspermum ammi fruit. Int J Pharm Biol Sci. 2010; 1: 1-5.
  6. Kaur H. Estrogenic activity of some herbal galactogogue constituents. Indian J Anim Nutr. 1998; 15: 232-234.