6 Benefits You Should Know About Black Seed Oil

6 Benefits You Should Know About Black Seed Oil

Black seed oil, which is derived from the seeds of the Nigella sativa plant, maybe one of the best-kept secrets of natural remedies. If black seed oil (or black seed powder) is not on your radar or in your supplement cabinet, perhaps it should be, and here's why.

Nigella sativa is a flowering perennial that is native to south and southwest Asia. The seeds have a bitter, pungent taste and aroma and are a favorite spice in Middle Eastern and Indian cuisines. As an herbal remedy, it has been credited with effectively treating just about anything and has been used for millennia.

Read about Nestle wants to patent medicinal uses of Nigella sativa

Black seeds, which are also sometimes referred to as black cumin, black caraway, black sesame, and Roman coriander, have been the subject of hundreds of scientific studies for a wide variety of symptoms and conditions. Experts have proposed that the reason for the effectiveness of black seed oil is the presence of three phytochemicals: thymoquinone (TQ), thymohydroguinone (THQ), and thymol. These natural chemicals have demonstrated an ability to destroy or inhibit dozens of common human pathogens, which is a big reason why researchers have been testing its ability to fight superbugs. But fighting superbugs is not the only thing for which black seed oil is valued.

Benefits of black seed oil

Here is a discussion of seven health benefits of black seed oil. Talk to your healthcare provider about the best dose of black seed oil for your needs.

  • Diabetes. Some research gives black seed oil a lot of credit when it comes to helping with diabetes. In fact, one study claims that the natural remedy "improves glucose tolerance as efficiently as metformin; yet it has not shown significant adverse effects and has very low toxicity." In a clinical trial of 114 patients with type 2 diabetes, the use of black seed oil for one year resulted in a significant decline in fasting blood glucose and hemoglobin A1c as well as improvements in other factors associated with diabetes when compared with placebo.

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  • Hair loss. Although there are no published studies to support this claim, anecdotal reports claim that black seed oil may help with the regrowth of hair in thinning areas. Combine 1 part black seed oil with 2 parts olive oil and massage the mixture into your scalp vigorously to encourage hair growth. Rinse with a cleansing conditioner. Perform this oil massage several times a week. The anti-inflammatory properties of black seed oil, as well as its antioxidant and antimicrobial characteristics, are believed to contribute to promoting healthy hair roots.
  • Liver health. The liver is a master detox organ, so it's critical that it functions optimally at all times. Experts have shown that the use of black seed oil promotes better liver function and helps prevent damage and disease.
  • Skin health. Black seed oil has a beneficial impact on the production of melanin, which is a pigment that protects the skin from damage. Therefore, using black seed oil on your skin can promote healthy dermis and healing. The use of the oil has been shown to help manage eczema and to be as effective as betamethasone for this purpose. Black seed oil also can help reduce symptoms of psoriasis and acne. The oil can be taken internally, applied as-is or is available in various lotions.

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  • Superbugs. The growing problem of superbugs has been all the buzz for several years, with methicillin-resistant staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) topping the list of bad guys. MRSA is a significant problem in hospitals and nursing homes, which provide a potentially deadly combination: close quarters, many elderly and frail individuals, invasive procedures, and an ordinary staph infection that has become resistant to generic antibiotics. Some research indicates that various strains of MRSA are sensitive to Nigella sativa, which suggests the remedy may help slow down or stop the superbug infection from spreading.
  • Weight loss. In a review of more than a dozen herbal remedies and their ability to help with weight loss, Nigella sativa was noted to have "satisfactory anti-obesity effects." It appears black seed oil helps us drop pounds by reducing appetite, blood glucose levels, cholesterol, triglycerides, and absorption of glucose in the intestinal tract.

[Editor's Note: North American Herb & Spice offers a raw black seed oil. You can find out more on their website.]

North American Herb and Spice Black Seed Oil

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Axe J. Black seed oil benefits
Hannan A et al. Antibacterial activity of Nigella sativa against clinical isolates of methicillin resistant Staphylococcus aureus. Journal of Ayub Medical College Abbottabad 2008 Jul-Se; 20(3): 72-74
Hasani-Ranjbar S et al. A systematic review of anti-obesity medicinal plants-an update. Journal of Diabetes and Metabolism Disorders 2013 Jun 19; 12(1): 28
Ivankovic S et al. The antitumor activity of thymoquinone and thyohydroquinone in vitro and in vivo. Experimental Oncology 2006 Sep; 28(3): 220-24
Kaatabi H et al. Nigella sativa improves glycemic control and ameliorates oxidative stress in patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus: placebo controlled participant blinded clinical trial. PLoS One 2015 Feb 23; 10(2): e0113486
Mathur ML et al. Antidiabetic properties of a spice plant Nigella sativa. Journal of Endocrinology and Metabolism 2011 Apr; 1(1): 1-8
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Yousefi M et al. Comparison of therapeutic effect of topical Nigella with betamethasone and Eucerin in hand eczema .Journal of the European Academy of Dermatology and Venereology 2013 Dec; 27(12): 1498-504
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Andrea Donsky, B. COMM is an international TV Health Expert, Best Selling Author, Nutritionist Podcast Host, and Founder of NaturallySavvy.com—a recipient of Healthline’s Best Healthy Living Blogs for 2019. As a pioneer and visionary in the health food industry, Andrea’s passion is to inspire people to make healthier choices. Andrea has combined her background and expertise as both a Registered Holistic Nutritionist and an entrepreneur ("She Boss!") to educate the public on living a healthy lifestyle through the creation of her businesses, books, articles, podcasts, videos, talks, and TV and radio media appearances. Andrea founded Naturally Savvy Media Inc. in 2007 in order to share her passion for healthy living, and love for natural products and companies. Among her numerous publications, Andrea co-authored Unjunk your Junk Food published by Simon and Schuster, a book that journalist, author and mother Maria Shriver endorsed: “Unjunk Your Junk Food has certainly made me more aware about the food that my children eat and the effects it has on our body and mind."</P. Andrea also co-authored two e-books entitled Label Lessons: Your Guide To A Healthy Shopping Cart, and Label Lessons: Unjunk Your Kid’s Lunch Box.