Aisha (ra) said that she heard the Prophet (saw) say, “The black seed is a cure for every disease except death.” Sahih al-Bukhari 5687.
The scientific name for black seed is Nigella Sativa. It is also known by several names – black cumin, habba sauda (Arabic), kalonji (Urdu), black onion seed and corek otu (Tukish). Black seed has shown to offer numerous medicinal properties, including anti-bacterial, analgesic, anti-fungal, anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, antispasmodic, antiviral, anti-hypertensive, hypotensive and insulin sensitizing.
Here are some of the proven health benefits of black seed.
Multiple scientific studies have been conducted on black seed oil related to a variety of different cancers, including colon cancer, lung cancer, brain tumor cells and more. One 2012 study out of the National University of Singapore, found that the “anti-tumor effects of thymoquinone have also been investigated in tumor xenograft mice models for colon, prostate, pancreatic and lung cancer.”
In 2014, researchers from Saudi Arabia reported that the oil was able to significantly reduce the population of living cancer cells and altered cellular morphology. They discovered that the higher concentration of the oil that was used to treat the cancer cells, the greater level of cell death, and ultimately concluded that the data showed black cumin oil significantly reduced the viability of human lung cancer cells.
According to an article in the Journal of Endocrinology and Metabolism, black seed “causes gradual partial regeneration of pancreatic beta-cells, increases the lowered serum insulin concentrations, and decreases the elevated serum glucose.”
The research on mice suggests that black seed can prevent the development of type 1 diabetes, and increase the insulin sensitivity of liver cells, which helps to prevent type 2 diabetes.
3. Immune System
Black seed contains powerful antioxidants as well as beneficial B vitamins and acids, it helps to support the immune system. It’s particularly beneficial for people with autoimmune disease. It increases immune function without encouraging an immune reaction against healthy tissue in the body.
Natural News calls black seed oil “the most important oil you can put in your system.” The publication reports that studies conducted at the IIMER in Panama City, Florida revealed the black seed oil was able to improve the immune system by an astounding 72 percent in as little as four weeks.
A number of studies have shown that black seed offers anti-asthmatic effects – and, depending on the cause of asthma, it can sometimes be even more effective than traditional, conventional treatments. These same properties also make it beneficial for relieving allergies.
A 2012 study that looked at the therapeutic efficacy of black seed as a treatment approach for allergic rhinitis, found it to be highly effective. After six weeks of using the oil as nose drops (applied 2 drops nasally (one in each nostril) 3 times a day), all of the patients who had experienced mild allergy symptoms became totally symptom free, while 68.7% of moderate suffers became symptom free and 25% noted improvements.
Of severe sufferers, 58.3% became symptom free and 25% were improved. The biggest improvements were seen in nasal drop, followed by nasal itching, sneezing, congestion and improvement of sleep. The study authors concluded that using black seed oil as nose drops were effective for treating allergic rhinitis, with only minimal side effects (nasal dryness was reported by 17.8% of participants).
Black seed can fight off many different strains of bacteria, including salmonella, E. coli, listeria, staph and MRSA, all types of bacteria known to cause dangerous infections. MRSA in particular is a strain of bacteria that’s very difficult to treat with conventional medicine, in fact, it’s been plaguing hospitals and nursing homes around the world because ordinary staph infections are becoming resistant to generic antibiotics due to overuse.
Black seed has the ability to kill it – and it’s effectiveness has been proven in scientific studies, including a 2008 study out of the Department of Microbiology, University of Health Sciences, Lahore, Pakistan.
For internal bacterial infections, black seed oil can be added to a drink like herbal tea, and for a skin infection, you can apply it directly to skin.
Black seed improves digestive ailments. The seeds are considered to be carminative, which means they aid digestion and can help to decrease bloating, gas and stomach cramps. If you suffer from irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), black cumin oil may be very beneficial as it’s been shown to have antispasmodic effects on the smooth muscle of the intestine. Other conditions that cause intestinal cramp-type pain may be relieved as well.
In a study published in June of 2013 in the Journal of Diabetes and Metabolic Disorders, researchers noted that after reviewing the literature for plants with anti-obesity properties, they found that black seed was among the most effective natural remedies in the world.
It’s believed to be effective in much the same way that it can help diabetics. It’s an excellent anti-inflammatory agent and has been found to lessen the appetite, improve glucose levels and glucose absorption, which can help one to lose excess weight.
Black seed is known to promote and inhibit melanin production, benefiting the skin and even helping to heal scars, and prevent scar formation. Other research has shown that black seed oil is effective in decreasing the severity of eczema on the hands. It’s known to help soothe inflammation, and improve the speed at which the skin heals.
Black seed is known to not only strengthen the hair, but to encourage growth and even address hair loss. It has anti-microbial compounds and powerful antioxidants that are known to strengthen hair follicles. As it is also an anti-inflammatory, it’s excellent for soothing scalp conditions like flakiness. It also helps to kill fungal and viral infections, so if you’re battling a problem with lice, you can benefit by using black seed.
If you’re suffering from hair loss, or baldness, you can apply black seed oil directly to bald spots, leave it on for 30 minutes and then rinse. Another option is to combine a mixture of extra-virgin oil and black seed oil, and then rub it directly on balding areas.