Black seed oil, also known as black cumin seed oil or black coriander oil, comes from the seeds of Nigella sativa, a flowering plant native to the southwest of Asia that is also popular as fennel flower. The plant has small black seeds with the shape of a crescent that has been used in traditional medical systems in many different cultures for a long time. The use of black seed oil can be even mentioned in the legend and history of King Tut and Cleopatra in the ancient Egypt. It was reported that Cleopatra used black seed oil for her beauty treatment while Hippocates used it to combat digestive problems.
Today, black seed oil has been researched in more than 600 peer-reviewed studies, and all of those studies show promising results with no bad side effects. Yet, it is mind-boggling that most people are not familiar with the magic natural remedy. A large part of the power of black seed oil to treat a variety of diseases comes from its three important natural chemicals: thymol, thymoquinone (TQ), and thymohydroquinone (THQ). All of them contain antifungal and antimicrobial properties, making them effective to fight different types of infections. Moreover, thymoquinone is also an active ingredient that is known for its anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, and anticancer characteristics. The combination of these three active substances creates an extremely potent oil that eases many health problems.
Moreover, black seed oil also contains vitamin B1, B2, B3, iron, calcium, zinc, folate, phosphorous, crystalline nigellone, palmitic acid, palmitoleic acid, linoleic acid, myristic acid, carotene, and some other active compounds. These vitamins, minerals, and active compounds make black seed oil superior compared to many other popular natural remedies.
1. Prevents and Treats Cancer
Some Croatian scientists studied the antitumor properties of thymoquinone and thymohydroquinone only to find promising effects. Using mice as test subjects, the scientists discovered that both phytochemicals were able to reduce tumor cells in mice by around 52%. These phytochemicals are abundant in black seed oil. As a result, black seed oil possesses a potent ability to prevent, fight, and treat cancer through multiple mechanisms.
First, the anti-proliferation property prevents the cancerous cells to rapidly multiply and spread. The chemicals also induce apoptosis or death of these tumor cells. Then, it also arrests the cycle of those cells so cancerous cells cannot grow into their mature form. The phytochemicals in black seed oil also prevent the tumor cells to metastasize. When metastasis happens, a secondary tumor is formed, also called as a metastatic tumor. This new tumor has similar cell structures to the ones in the original tumor. For example, if somebody suffers from a breast cancer and then the cancer cells metastasize to her lungs, then the metastatic tumor is made up of mutated or abnormal breast cells instead of mutated lung cells. Black seed oil has an anti-metastasis property to prevent this. Moreover, black seed oil also has an anti-angiogenesis property, meaning that it prevents the formation of new blood vessels that are needed by the abnormal tumor cells to grow. The phytochemicals in black seed oil inhibit the release of the chemicals by the cancerous cells and the nearby host cells.
A study mentioned the effectiveness of thymoquinone to treat prostate, pancreatic colon, and lung cancer in mice models. In the study, the scientists combined conventional chemotherapeutic treatment with the phytochemical that is present in black seed oil. The investigation proved that the combination delivered better therapeutic effect and reduced the negative side effects of the traditional chemotherapeutic drugs in patients.
2. Promotes a Healthy Liver
Your liver is an extremely important part of your body. Almost all toxins that enter your system gets processed and filtered by the organ. Besides, the bile that is produced by the liver is necessary to digest the fact that you consume and keep your body and mind healthy. Because of this, it is an utmost importance to maintain the perfect health of your liver. Sometimes, people struggle with the poor functions of their livers because of excessive alcohol consumption, side effects of certain medications, or even diseases. If you are among those who have to struggle with poor liver function, you can take the benefits of black seed oil. The oil will greatly accelerate the healing of your liver and prevent the damage from getting worse.
In a recent study by Egyptian researchers using rats as subjects, it is observed that black seed oil is effective to treat hepato-renal toxicity. The study aimed to investigate if the oil was able to relieve hepato-renal injury that was caused by bromobenzene. All the markers that were observed showed positive impact after a treatment with black seed oil. The scientists did not only observe an improvement in the liver structure but also in the kidney. The scientists concluded that black seed oil could reduce liver damage complications, delay the progression of the disease, and enhance the protection.
3. Treats Diabetes
There are probably many medicines and natural remedies that claim effectiveness in treating or preventing diabetes. However, the ability of black seed oil is quite unique. What distinguishes it from other diabetes remedies is its protective and offensive ability against the causes of both diabetes type 1 and type 2. A recent article that was published in the issue of Journal of Endocrinology and Metabolism by researchers at Indian Council of Medical Research detailed this unique ability. The researchers highlighted the potential of black seed oil to increase the insulin serum, gradually cause partial regeneration of pancreatic cells, and decrease glucose tolerance.
These findings prove that Nigella sativa or black seed is one of the few remedies that can prevent both types of diabetes. In fact, another study also claimed that black seed oil is even better than the most commonly used and prescribed medicine for diabetes type 2, metformin. Besides working as efficiently as the pharmaceutically produced medicine, black seed oil also shows no significant side effects the way metformin does, such as constipation or diarrhea, bloating, headache, heartburn, indigestion, stomach pain, and muscle pain. Black seed oil also has less toxicity. Of course, these findings are an important breakthrough in the fight against diabetes which is a chronic problem that is suffered by millions of people around the world.
4. Aids Weight Loss
Black seed oil is probably one of the most potent herbal supplement that can help people in their weight loss programs. The claim is confirmed by the Journal of Diabetes and Metabolic Disorders. Last June, the journal issued a literature review for plants with anti-obesity properties and mentioned that among other plants with exceptional properties against obesity, black seed oil was among one of the most effective herbal remedies in the world. This is quite surprising because Nigella sativa is not a plant that is traditionally used to treat obesity among people. Black seed oil possesses active anti-inflammatory agents that can help people fight obesity and achieve weight loss in a similar way it helps people with diabetes. Black seed oil does this by decreasing the triggers of weight gain. As a result, the obesity is gradually decreasing. This ability of black seed oil has now helped millions of people in their fight against the excess weight.
So what are these triggers that are deactivated by black seed oil? For a starter, black seed oil suppresses appetite. Consuming the oil regularly will improve your satiety. It also reduces glucose absorption by the intestines and brings down the level of bad cholesterols, blood glucose, and triglycerides. When these trigger factors are suppressed, it will be easier for you to shed some kilograms.
5. Fights Bacterial Infections
Black seed oil has important and well-documented anti-bacterial properties that can kill bugs that are resistant to most medications. One of these superbugs that can be eradicated easily by taking black seed oil is the Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus or MRSA. These bacteria cause an extraordinary staph infection that cannot be treated by generic antibiotics that are supposed to be effective at treating these kinds of infections. As a result, a phenomenon of antibiotic-resistant plague in haunting nursing homes and hospitals around the world. The infection is most threatening to the elderly population with a weakened immunity that undergoes invasive procedures like intravenous tubing, artificial joints implant, and surgeries. Fortunately, fighting and killing bacteria is one of the strongest benefits of black seed oil. This fact is backed by scientific findings. Some Pakistan scientists discovered that all strains of MRSA that they studied were sensitive to black seed oil, an evidence that the oil can help stop the spread of MRSA staph infection.
6. Has Anti-Parasitic, Antiviral, and Antifungal Properties
Besides the effectiveness of black seed oil in fighting and eradicating bacteria, it also has antiparasitic, antiviral, and antifungal properties. The thymohydrouinone a thymoquinone in black seed oil possess some potent anti-fungal activity. The extract of black seed has very strong effect against the fungi Candida albicans and other phytopathogenic fungi that can cause dangerous conditions. In a test involving rats as test subjects, black seed oil has shown to be very effective against mold or aflatoxicosis. It protects the rats from the mold well. This protective property may be used by people to treat Chronic Inflammatory Response Syndrome.
Besides antifungal, black seed oil also exhibits a strong antiviral property. It reduces the number of virus in people suffering from Hepatitis C. Moreover, it also shows an ability to eradicate laryngotracheitis virus and CMV virus in mice. These antifungal and antiviral properties are also completed by the antiparasitic properties of the same oil. The oil has traditionally used by people to fight malaria. Some studies indicate that black seed oil probably has strong therapeutic activity against Plasmodium parasites that cause malaria. Moreover, in animal experiments, black seed oil has also demonstrated its effectiveness against Schistosoma mansion, cercariae, and adult worms.
7. Boosts Immune System
Because black seed oil contains strong and powerful antioxidants, some B vitamins and beneficial acids, it works wonder for the immune system. Black seed oil is especially beneficial for people suffering from autoimmune diseases because it strengthens and balances the immune system in a healthy way. Unlike elderberry, Echinacea, or some other herbs, black seed oil improves your body immune system without promoting the bad immunity reaction against your body’s healthy cells and tissues. Your immune system won’t attack your own body.
Natural News even goes so far by calling black seed oil as the most important oil that we can put in our systems. The publication reported an important study that was conducted in a facility in Panama City, Florida. In the study, it was discovered that the black seed oil could significantly improve the immune system by around 72% during a consumption period of merely four weeks. This figure is certainly astounding.
8. Relieves Allergy and Asthma
According to a number of studies, black seed oil also has an anti-asthmatic effect. The asthma-healing properties can even be stronger and work better than other traditional treatments, depending on the types and causes of asthma. Because of this, it is suggested to take black seed oil regularly to relieve asthma. These properties also work for other allergies as it relieves the similar symptoms.
Based on a study in 2012 that investigated the therapeutic effect of black seed oil in treating allergic rhinitis, it was discovered that the oil was very effective. In the research, the patients applied black seed oil as nose drops three times a day. After six weeks of application, all of the patients with mild symptoms of allergy became symptom-free while 68.7% patients who had moderate allergy symptoms also became symptom-free. The 25% of patients who suffered from moderate allergy symptoms experienced some improvement in their condition. More than half of the severe sufferers also became symptom-free while many others experienced an ease in their symptoms. The symptoms that disappeared include nasal drop, nasal itching, congestion, sneezing, and sleep problems. Meanwhile, the side effects are very minimal. 17,8% of the subjects noted nasal dryness with no other major noticeable symptoms. The ability to cure allergy is most likely because of the strengthened immune system as well as black seed oil’s antihistamine properties. These findings backed up the ancient traditions that are still largely practiced in some parts of the world today.
9. Reduces Anxiety
Black seed oil has also demonstrated some evidence of being a mood stabilizer. The oil can be consumed to reduce stress and anxiety in human as well left uplift the mood. The thymoquinone oil in black seed oil has an anti-anxiety property that could be observed in mice test subjects. It might also be used as a treatment for anxiety. Moreover, black seed oil has anti-depressant and anti-fatigue properties as it was tested in an experiment involving mice models. This is because the oil decreases nervous system’s activities that are related to the anxiety. Besides, its anti-inflammatory properties also reduce the damage an intense stress has on the body, so it won’t cause any long-term negative effects.
10. Promotes A Stronger Memory
Black seed oil also has a neuroprotective ability that enhances and prevents the degradation of brains function. It is possible to enhance your memory, cognitive ability, and attention span by taking black seed oil regularly. There was a research where some scientists gave a group of elderly persons the research subjects 500 mg of black seed extract twice a day for nine weeks. At the end of the research, the group reported an improvement in their memory and cognitive function.
11. Promotes Healthy Hair
Black seed oil also has a very potent ability to stop hair loss and stimulate hair growth. The ability has been proven by many people although so far there hasn’t been any specific scientific explanation for this. It is widely assumed that the health boost to the hair is associated with the powerful antimicrobial and antioxidant properties. By preventing bacteria and fungus to populate the head, it prevents dandruff that can reduce hair strength and cause hair loss. It also fights lice that can cause irritation and itch to the scalp. The anti-inflammatory properties strengthen hair follicles and make hair roots have a stronger grip to the scalp. Moreover, black seed oil also contains important nutrients that can nourish the hair.
12. Treats Epilepsy
Epilepsy is a long-term condition that often requires its sufferers to be very careful with their activities and environment to avoid seizures that can be dangerous to them. Fortunately, if you are suffering from epilepsy, you can be benefited by consuming black seed oil regularly. There is a science-backed tradition to use black seed oil to treat epilepsy. A scientific research that was published in an issue of Medical Science Monitor tested the effectiveness of black seeds as an anti-convulsive medication. According to the study that, children aged 23 months to 13 years suffering from refractory seizure disorder experienced a significantly lowered frequency of seizure after being treated with the extract of black seeds. This will benefit the children a lot because around 15% of children that suffer from epilepsy are resistant to anti-epilepsy medications.
13. Promotes Healthy and Beautiful Skin
Black seed oil is also very useful for skin treatment. According to the legend, Cleopatra and Queen Nefertiti are among those who understood and took benefits of the power of black seed oil for their beauty. Acne and blemishes are some skin problems that mess with a lot of teenagers and adults’ perfect skin. Since black seed oil has an antibacterial property, it can kill the bacteria that helps contribute to the formation of acne. Moreover, it is also very rich in vitamins and important minerals, such as vitamin C, A, B, magnesium, zinc, and potassium. All of those micronutrients are needed by the skin to be smooth, flawless, and youthful. You can get the benefits by directly applying the oil on your skin or put some drops into a small amount of freshly boiled water and give yourself a steam treatment with it.
14. Improves Testosterone
Some studies, although most of them were conducted on animals, showed that black seed oil also has an ability to boost the testosterone level in the body. There was a scientific study where the scientists put some nigella sativa extract in the rat’s drinking water and an increase in the rats’ testosterone level was witnessed. The research was replicated on another group of male rats and another improvement of testosterone level by around 9% was observed. Some people claimed that black seed oil also gave them testosterone boost. While positive effects were noted in animal studies, more studies involving humans need to be conducted in this area.
Black seed oil is also a time-tested natural remedy for many respiratory ailments, including some kinds of a cough. A cough and sore throat may cause a lot of discomforts, but black seed oil can easily soothe these two common illnesses. It is a very popular folk treatment to mix some black tea oil into a cup of hot ginger tea or a teaspoon of honey to provide relief for deep coughs. These attempts usually work well because the oil will help your bronchial muscles to relax. As a result, your cough and throat soreness will be alleviated. In addition to drinking black seed oil directly, you can also use the oil to rub your upper chest. This will help open up the airways better and reduce the blockage because of the mucus. Moreover, you can also inhale the oil as a vapor by adding it into a bowl of hot water and inhaling the steam.