Cumin is a savory cooking spice that belongs to the Apiaceae family and is widely used in Asian, African and Latin American cooking. It is a healthy and tasty spice that offers various physical and mental health benefits.
Cumin seeds are found in a flowering annual plant called cuminum cyminum. It is the second most popular spice in the world and is sold as whole seeds or in powdered form. The best quality cumin is available in Egypt. It’s similar to caraway seeds in its brown oblong shaped appearance, has a nutty, peppery flavor and is widely used in Indian curries. It can be added to a vast variety of dishes such as soups, stews, vegetables and grilled meats in addition to curries, to impart flavor.
Physical Health Benefits of Cumin
Cumin is a rich source of iron that’s an essential component of digestive and metabolic enzymes and hemoglobin. Consumption of cumin therefore helps in the digestive processes, in the provision of oxygen to bodily tissues, in the production of energy and in boosting the immune system. Cumin also has anti-carcinogenic properties, and research has shown that it helps prevent cancers of the stomach and liver in animals. Pancreatic enzymes essential for digestion and assimilation of nutrients, and certain detoxification enzymes are triggered by the consumption of cumin. It is also beneficial to asthma and arthritis patients and those suffering from kidney diseases.
Mental Health Benefits of Cumin
Cumin helps sharpen the memory, improves concentration levels and is especially beneficial to people suffering from insomnia.
Cumin and Weight Loss
Cumin increases the heat of the body. It thus increases the metabolic rate of the body. When metabolism is made more efficient, it can aid in weight loss. Cumin is also used in conjunction with other spices such as black pepper, ginger, turmeric powder and fenugreek in Indian cooking and works as a great digestive aid when used in this manner. It also improves the digestive process which results in better assimilation and absorption of nutrients by the body. This prevents the storage of fat by the body and results in weight loss.
Cumin and Fats
Cumin is fat busting by nature and burns fats from the abdominal area at a rapid rate. In fact, cumin can improve your body’s fat burning ability by 25 percent. At the same time, it enhances the digestive process and protects your body against disease. It has to be taken together with other spices such as fennel, anise, fresh ginger and mustard for maximum benefits in a weight loss program. Cumin also boosts the excretory process and increases the speed at which excretory waste is expelled from your body. Since there is no accumulation of undigested food due to cumin’s ability to enhance the digestive process and no accumulation of feces, cumin can help you lose weight.
Cumin should be included in your daily diet as it boosts the immune system, increases the metabolic rate of the body, burns fats faster and helps detoxify the body. Another advantage is that cumin has no known side effects and can be safely consumed by people of all ages and by those who suffer from various medical conditions.