Ajwain is a popular spice added to numerous foods due to its flavour and medicinal properties.
The botanical name of Ajwain or bishop’s weed (carom seed) is Trachyspermum ammi belonging to the family apeaceae. Ajwain has been used as a carminative from the time of charaka and sushruta. Some very valuable Unani medicines are prepared from ajwain seeds.
Healing Power and Curative Properties
- It pacifies all kapha and vata dominant diseases.
- Increases digestive fire (agni) and pitta.
- Seeds have antiseptic property.
- Beneficial in indigestion,flatulence,bloated abdomen, dysentery.
- Have diuretic and analgesic properties.
- Improves the functioning of the heart.
Indicated for a variety of conditions like:-
- Common cold
Since many of our readers are looking for easy tips and home remedies here are some interesting ones with Ajwain.
- Urticaria: Powdered ajwain mixed with jaggery can be taken daily for beneficial results.
- Common cold: In stuffy or blocked nose, a tsp. of ajwain can be crushed and tied in a cloth and can be used for inhaling. The strong odour soon clears the stuffy nose. For infants and small children, a small pouch can be pinned to their dress under the chin, when they are sleeping. Inhaling the vapours will also give beneficial results in adults.
- Rheumatoid arthritis: Seasoned buttermilk prepared by adding equal quantities of ajwain, harad,dry ginger is beneficial in pacifying problems due to rheumatoid arthritis.
- Migraine: The seeds can either be smoked or sniffed to get instant relief.
- Rheumatism: The oil extracted from the seeds is beneficial in the treatment of rheumatic and neuralgic pains. It should be applied on the affected parts.
- Respiratory Disorders: A mixture of the seeds and buttermilk is an effective remedy for relieving difficult expectoration caused by dried phlegm. A hot fomentation with the seeds is a beneficial remedy for asthma. Inhaling the vapours of a tsp. of the seeds put in boiling water will also be helpful.
- Chewing a pinch of ajwain seeds with a crystal of common salt and a clove is very effective in case of cough caused due to acute pharyngitis in influenza.
- Gout: Make a powder of seeds. Take 2 tsp., twice daily with warm milk.
- Earache: About ½ a tsp. of the seeds is heated in 30 ml of milk till the essence of the seeds permeate the milk. The milk is then filtered and used as ear drops. It decreases congestion and relieves pain.
- Sprains: Mix a paste of ajwain, salt and turmeric in gingelly oil and apply on the sprained area along with some wheat flour.
- Gastro intestinal disorders:
- For relieving flatulence, dyspepsia, spasmodic disorders- the seeds may be eaten with betel leaves.
- A tsp. of these seeds with a pinch of rock salt is very effective in indigestion.
- In case of colic, ajwain, dry ginger and black salt in the proportion of 1: 1/2: ¼ should be ground together and taken in 3 gram doses with warm water.
- Consumption of the decoction prepared by boiling ajwain seeds in water, is an effective home remedy for gaseous distension of abdomen.
- Worms- Make a powder of seeds. Mix 2 tsp. of powder with black salt in equal amount and take at night with water.
- Mouth disorders: An infusion of the seeds mixed with common salt can be used as gargle in case of acute pharyngitis, hoarseness of voice, sore throat due to cold etc.
- Tooth ache: Powder of ajwain and vacha (sweet flag), mixed together can be applied on the cavities,which helps in relieving the pain and swelling.
Dosage Indicated for Ajwain
Churna/powder: 3-6 grams
Oil: 2-3 drops
Many Ayurvedic formulations like Ajamodadi arkam, Ajamodadi churnam, Huthabhugadi churnam, Vishwa ajamodadi churnam, Vaishwanara churna, Agni tundi vati, Chitrakadi vati, Yograj guggulu, Brihat saindhavadya taila and Vishagarbha taila contain Ajwain.
A word of caution: Pregnant ladies, people suffering from liver diseases, hyperacidity should refrain from using ajwain. Use herbs and spices with caution!