Within the Islamic culture there are a number of herbs, fruits and plants that are thought to have healing and medicinal properties. Pomegranates, olives, figs and dates are directly listed in the Qur’an as the blessed foods. But, there is just one that can have a claim as superfood and it is the Black cumin. According to hadith, it is believed that Muhammed have said: “In the black seed lies healing for all diseases except death.”

Indigenous to the Mediterranean, black seed (Nigella Sativa) was used medicinally by centuries. Actually, the earliest written record referring to black cumin was in the book of Isaiah where Isaiah mentions harvesting of black seed.

Also, it was mentioned in the Bible as a curative ‘black seed’ and was used by Asian herbalists and by the Romans for culinary purpose. But it never really had any important place until the rise of the Islam.


In the Arabo-Islamic culture, black seed was prescribed for numerous ailments such as fever, chronic headaches, asthma, diabetes, digestion, infections, back pain and rheumatism. Actually, since it has gained popularity in the 7th century, black seed remained a staple of natural medicine in the Islamic world. It is believed that black seed has 100 components and it is a significant source of proteins, fatty acids, carbohydrates, minerals and vitamins.

Studies showed a number of pharmacological benefits. The black cumin seed isalso called Nigella sativa seed. The seeds have anti-cancer and anti-diabetic properties. They are used to boost the immune system, kill microorganism, reduce pain, reduce inflammation, open the small airways in the lungs and inhibit the spasmodic activities. Black seeds oil protects the kidneys, liver and the digestive system. It’s a strong antioxidant.

Today we will review some of the most recent studies that show how black cumin oil can have numerous benefits for your health.

We will review studies that examined the use of black cumin oil for dealing with obesity, reducing inflammation, balancing the blood chemistry, supporting a healthy immune function and easing nasal discomfort and dryness.


Scientists from the Saudi Arabia reviewed scientific studies on the benefits of black seeds as a natural medicine. They discussed about the incredible healing power of this plant and its dominant position among the herbal medicines. Its ranking is based on scientific facts. The majority of therapeutic properties are linked to the concentration thymoquinone which is a major bioactive component of the oil contained in the seed.


Black seeds are used for centuries as spice and food preservative.
Black seed oil have potent medicinal properties in the traditional medicine.

Studies provide clear evidence that the oil and the active ingredients, like thymoquinone, have great antioxidant effects. This is achieved by improving the oxidant scavenger system, which has a detox effect.

Thymoquinone and the oil have powerful anti-inflammatory effect on a couple of experimental models of inflammation.

These are encephalomyelitis (brain and spinal cord inflammation after infection), peritonitis (inflammation of the lining membrane inside the abdomen and internal organs), colitis (colon inflammation), edema (soft tissue swelling caused by accumulation of excess fluid) and arthritis.

Black seeds oil and some of the active ingredients have the ability to boost the immune system. It supports T-cell and kill. Most importantly, its active ingredients have anti-tumor and antimicrobial properties towards various cancers and microbes.

Numerous diseases include inflammation, such as cancer, cystic fibrosis and allergies.

Free radicals produced in cases of inflammation can cause gene modifications and mutations of proteins related to cancer.

The oil and seeds have numerous pharmacological effects such as antibacterial, anti-tumor, antifungal, analgesic as well as antipyretic activity.

The study investigated antioxidant and anti-inflammatory activity of the black seeds used in cases of acute inflammations. Researchers used animal model. They induced strong inflammatory reaction and measured the various effects for the group treated with the oil and the control group. They found that black seed has antioxidant and therapeutic effects.


Obesity is closely related with increased incidence of cancer, cardiovascular diseases, insulin resistance as well as immune dysfunction.

Therefore the strategies for mitigating obesity should consider these pathologies apart from promoting healthy weight loss. Recently conducted studies suggest that black cumin has anti-cancer, cardio-protective, anti-diabetic, immune-modulatory and antioxidant properties.

Since there is an increased interest for using nutraceuticals and functional foods and increased rate of chronic diseases and obesity worldwide, more studies about the preventive/ therapeutic effects of the black cumin are really needed.

Scientists identified obesity as the most dominant health issue affecting every age group. It causes chronic heart diseases, type 2 diabetes and stroke. Scientists reviewed abstracts from 33 articles associated with obesity, traditional and herbal medicine. They discovered that black seeds, black tea and green tea have great anti-obesity effects.

One study conducted by researchers in Iran examined the effects of long-term supplementation with Nigella sativa and the usage of aerobic exercises on the oxygen consumption and lipid profile in sedentary obese women.

It was a randomized controlled and double-blind trial. Twenty sedentary obese females were placed into 2 groups and assigned to a black seed supplement condition or a placebo condition for 8 weeks. Both groups had aerobic training three times a week. VO2 max and blood lipids were measured before and after the experiment. VO2 max is a measure of the maximum oxygen amount that an individual can use during exercise.

Greater levels of oxygen consumption are linked to higher levels of fitness. The placebo group who did aerobic experienced reduction in LDL cholesterol and total cholesterol and greater VO2 max. Women who used black seed supplementats and aerobic had reductions in triglyceride, total cholesterol, LDL, and BMI (the ratio of fat to muscles). These women gained muscle and lost body fat.

Black seed supplements also increased the VO2 max and high density lipoprote. Scientists concluded that this 8-week aerobic training in combination with Nigella sativa supplements has a synergistic effects, and produced the highest health benefits.


Turkish scientist worked with patients in geriatric hospitals who experienced nasal dryness and similar nasal symptoms.

They compared the effects of using salt water solutions and black seed oil for clearing the nasal passages.
They discovered that nasal dryness, crusting and obstruction significantly improved by using black seed compared to those who salt water solution. They claimed that there is no significant difference between salt water and black cumin on nasal itching and burning. They concluded that this oil is better alternative for the treatment of nasal mucosal symptoms caused by aging.

Black cumin has been used in for centuries and it’s easy to see why the oil and seeds are becoming so popular in the Western countries.