Nigella sativa is an annual flowering plant native to southwest Asia. It has a pungent, bitter taste and a faint smell of strawberries. More commonly known as black seed or black cumin, we primarily use it in candies, liquors, and medicinally. Many Arab, Asian, and African countries use black seed oil as a remedy for various diseases and allergies.

What Does It Do?

Black seed’s most noteworthy use is its ability to reduce respiratory disorders and alleviate allergies. Additionally, studies demonstrated it to improve outcomes of pulmonary function tests and reduce symptoms of asthma in asthma patients and chemical war victims. Moreover, four separate studies in patients with allergies (allergic rhinitis, bronchial asthma, atopic eczema) reported that black seed decreased subjective measures of allergic disease severity, slightly decreased plasma triglycerides, and slightly increased HDL cholesterol.

What’s more, black seed contains a number of compounds, including thymoquinone, that have potential anticancer properties.

How Do I Take It?

Taking black seed as an oil by mouth three times a day has been shown to be safe and effective. When ingesting in this manner, take 2.5-5 milliliters (1/2-1 teaspoons) with olive oil.

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