Ajwain or Trachyspermum ammi is an annual herb that belongs to the Apiaceae family. Coated with other names such as ajowan, caraway, bishop’s weed or carom seeds, ajvan in Hindi, asmtavoman in Tamil, vamu in Telugu and omum in Malayalam, it is widely used in Indian cuisine.
Ajwain is a small, oval seed-like fruit, similar to the seeds of cumin and fennel, with a pungent and bitter taste. It has an aroma close to thyme because it contains thymol. The plant is mainly grown in Iraq, the Middle East, Afghanistan. In India, Rajasthan is the main producer of this crop, about 55% of the total production in the country and all you need is a small amount of ajwain to rule the dish.
Ajwain seeds are dry roasted or used in tadka as a spice blend, baked in ghee to enhance the flavor of lentils, and sprinkled over baked goods such as bread and cookies. These miracle seeds have a prominent place in Ayurvedic and Siddha medicine in the treatment of various ailments. Also read: Tadka in your dishes is not just for taste.
The nutrient richness in ajwain includes a good source of dietary fiber, essential fatty acids and protein. It is also packed with different types of essential oils such as thymol, cymene, pinene, terpinene and limonene. The many plant compounds in ajwain provide numerous health benefits and promote overall wellness and health.
Healing Health Benefits of Ajwain
1. Fights Infection
The potential antibacterial and antifungal properties of ajwain are attributed to the goodness of the active ingredients thymol and carvacrol which inhibit the growth of harmful bacteria and fungi. Several studies have shown that ajwain seeds are potent in fighting bacteria such as E. coli and salmonella that cause food poisoning and other gastrointestinal ailments. In addition, it acts as a powerful fungicide and germicidal agent. When crushed and applied topically, it heals the infections and treats wounds. Also read: 5 Natural Antibiotics to Fight Infections
2. Promotes Digestion
Ajwain is one of the main ingredients used in Indian cooking for its amazing gut healing properties. It occupies a prominent place in the treatment of various digestive ailments such as acidity, indigestion and flatulence. The active enzymes in ajwain help aid digestion by improving the secretion of gastric juices. In addition, carom seed extract is used to heal the ulcers of the esophagus, stomach and intestine and to treat stomach ulcers.
3. Regulates Blood Pressure
Uncontrolled blood pressure is a major risk factor for heart disease and stroke. Ajwain is used in traditional medicine to control high blood pressure. The active plant enzyme thymol in ajwain acts as an effective calcium channel blocker. This prevents calcium from entering the blood vessels of the heart, which relaxes and dilates the blood vessels, lowering blood pressure. According to Ayurveda, ajwain exhibits antihypertensive properties that work well to control symptoms of high blood pressure.
4.Treats Colds And Coughs
Studies show that carom seeds act as an effective cough remedy and provide immediate cough relief by improving airflow to the lungs. It is also clear the nasal blockage by draining the mucus easily. Make a powder of ajwain with jaggery and take this mixture twice a day to treat respiratory diseases such as asthma and bronchitis. Also Read: Difference Between Cold And Flu
5. Ajwain Water
Ajwain or granny water is an excellent Ayurvedic remedy to treat digestive problems. It helps treat digestive problems and alleviates the problem of irregular periods. Granny water is a traditional remedy given to babies to cure indigestion and flatulence. To make granny water, steep 2 teaspoons of roasted omum seeds in water, strain the decoction and drink it. Drinking this water regularly is known to boost metabolism, burn fat and aid in weight loss.
6. Relieves Arthritis
The kitchen ingredient has potent analgesic and anti-inflammatory properties, which is extremely beneficial in reducing joint and muscle pain, reducing the chances of chronic autoimmune inflammatory diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis, which stem from the deterioration of Vata Doshas.
7. Improves Skin Health
Blessed with anti-inflammatory and healing properties, ajwain is used for treating oxidative damage caused by free radicals due to the sun’s rays, hence treats the various signs of aging like wrinkles, fine lines, blemishes, dark circles, etc. It is also extraordinary beneficial for lightening scars due to acne, pimples and provides a smooth and radiant skin.
Make a paste of ajwain seeds and apply it on the affected areas to reduce scars and blemishes.
8. Arrests for premature graying of hair
The active ingredients in ajwain are extremely beneficial in preserving the natural color of the hair and preventing further graying. Due to its antimicrobial nature, it also treats various scalp and hair infections such as folliculitis, itching and dandruff. It also nourishes hair follicles with essential nutrients, promotes blood circulation and strengthens strands from the roots.
Boil ajwain seeds along with onion bulbs in coconut oil. Strain, cool and apply the concoction to your hair overnight. Use a mild shampoo to wash the hair the next day. Do it twice a week to get the desired results.
Ajwain water for weight loss
Ajwain water is a time-tested natural remedy for shedding those stubborn pounds immediately. Drinking ajwain water regularly supports improving metabolism, burning fat and thus aids in weight loss. Adding ajwain water to your regular diet helps in boosting digestion and flushing out the harmful toxins from the system.
How to make
Toast 2 teaspoons of ajwain seeds over low heat until it produces a pungent aroma. In a saucepan, take 2 cups of water and boil, add roasted ajwain seeds and stir until brown. Let it cool and strain it before consumption. Drink this concoction on an empty stomach to burn fat and lose weight.
Omam Water used
Ajwain or omam water is valued as an Ayurvedic miracle for curing various ailments. The presence of thymol aids the secretion of stomach acids and thus stimulates the digestive process and treats indigestion, flatulence, bloating and other gastrointestinal problems. Drinking granny water works wonders in regularizing irregular periods. Omam water is also given to babies to solve the problem of gas that causes discomfort and pain.
Additional health benefits:
To relieve severe earaches, a few drops of ajwain oil will work wonders. Just put two drops of the oil directly into the ear to get relief. A pinch of ajwain cooked with some crushed garlic in sesame oil is another quick remedy for earaches.
For aching toothaches, gargling with lukewarm ajwain and salt water is extremely beneficial. Inhaling vapors from ajwain seeds can also do wonders for a sore tooth. A good ingredient for oral hygiene, ajwain water is also a great mouthwash.
Effective Mosquito Repellent
If a repellent is not available and to protect yourself from mosquito bites, combine mustard oil with ajwai seeds and apply it to cardboard pieces. Place them in the corners of your room to keep mosquitoes away.
Ajwain water can be used to clear itchy eyes. Boil a handful of seeds and let them cool. Use a dropper to put this water in the eyes.
Fights liver and kidney disorders
Ajwain water treats chronic intestinal pain caused by sudden liver and kidney dysfunction.
Effect on Doshas:
Ajwain is sanctified with Katu (ie pungent taste) and Tikta Rasa (ie bitter taste) and Laghu (ie light), Rukshna (ie rough) and Teekshna Guna (ie pungent quality). It inherently portrays Ushna Virya (ie hot potency) and Katu Vipaka (ie sharp metabolic taste). Being raw and light, it calms the Vata doshas (ie air) and Kapha (earth and water) doshas while having a sharp metabolic taste and aggravating the Pitta doshas (fire and air).
Also Read: Introduction To Ayurveda: Learn About Vata, Pitta And Kapha Doshas
In general, when consumed in moderate amounts, ajwain does not cause any side effects. However, if used in excess, it can show adverse effects in a few people. Overuse can aggravate stomach ulcers and should be avoided by those suffering from diverticulitis, liver disease, and ulcerative colitis. Always consult a doctor in case of side effects.