The Health Benefits of Cumin
Cumin seeds’ health benefits mainly come from their phyto-chemicals, which are touted to have carminative, antioxidant and anti-flatulent properties. Cumin an excellent source of dietary fiber, vitamins A, E, B and C and antioxidant carotenes lutein and zeaxanthin. Health-promoting minerals in cumin include:
• Iron and copper: both minerals are essential for red blood cell production and formation.
• Zinc: It’s a co-factor that’s needed by enzymes that work to regulate digestion, growth and development and nucleic acid synthesis.
• Potassium: A crucial component of cells and body fluids, and is necessary for controlling blood pressure and heart rate.
• Manganese: A co-factor for superoxide dismutase, which is a powerful antioxidant enzyme.
Considering its small size, it’s absolutely impressive that cumin benefits your overall health, and may even help alleviate ailments, such as:
• Stress: A 2011 animal study published in the Pharmaceutical Biology journal found that cumin helped inhibit stress-induced biochemical changes in rats, which also improved their memory and cognition. According to the study authors:9
“This study provides scientific support for the anti-stress, antioxidant, and memory-enhancing activities of cumin extract and substantiates that its traditional use as a culinary spice in foods is beneficial and scientific in combating stress and related disorders.”
• Respiratory disorders: Its anti-congestive effects may be beneficial for people with asthma and bronchitis. This spice also works as an expectorant that loosens mucus and phlegm in the respiratory tract.10
• Sleeping disorder: One curious characteristic of cumin is that although it’s a stimulant, it can also work as a relaxant, making it potentially helpful for alleviating insomnia.11
• Diabetes: Research is still ongoing, but animal studies found that cumin may help reduce the risk of hypoglycemia. The test subjects who were given cumin seeds had a sharp decline in hypoglycemia, as well as a decrease in glycosuria.
• Cancer: Cumin may have anticancer properties, as it stimulates the secretion of chemopreventive and detoxifying enzymes from the glands.