Carom (Trachyspermum ammi), ajwain, bishop’s weed or ajowan is an annual herb that belongs to the family Apiaceae. The leaves and also the fruit which looks like seeds are consumed by humans, especially in India where it is from. It is noteworthy that the seeds are almost never eaten raw, because it is used either in powdered form or as a spice.
At this article, we are going to discover more interesting information about carom seeds, and not to forget the health benefits of carom seeds as well.
An Introduction to Carom Seeds
Carom has fruits that is small, oval-shaped, patterned like watermelon, shaped like seeds, and physically resembles other seeds in the Apiaceae family of plants, such as cumin, caraway and fennel. They taste bitter and pungent, comparable to that of anise and oregano, and smells like thyme because of the shared compound that the two of them have, thymol. The taste and aroma are so strong that even a few numbers of carom fruits have the potentials to dominate the flavour of a dish.
In terms of consumption, the fruits are rarely eaten raw. Even when not used as a spice or in powdered form, they are either dry roasted or fried in ghee. Ghee is Indian clarified butter. Indeed, this is what makes the spice to develop into a subtler yet complex scent.
Uses of Carom Seeds
Carom seeds sees usage in both Indian culinary and Ayurvedic treatment. In Indian cooking, it is used to make “chaunk”, which is a mixture of spices deep fried using oil or butter, made to flavour dishes that are made of lentil. In neighbouring Afghanistan and Pakistan, carom is used as a topping for breads and biscuits, and as herbal medicine respectively.
In Ayurvedic traditional medicine, carom is mainly used for treating everyday abdominal disorders such as indigestion, fatigue, abdominal pain, bloating, flatulence, or diarrhea and additionally respiratory discomfort or as an appetite booster.
Nutritional Facts of Carom Seeds
- Serving Size – 100 g
- Calories – 305
- Total Fat – 25 g
- Saturated Fat – 4 g
- Monounsaturated Fat – 5 g
- Polyunsaturated Fat – 15 g
- Trans Fat – 0 g
- Cholesterol – 0 mg
- Potassium – 0 mg
- Sodium – 10 mg
- Total Carbohydrates – 43 g
- Sugars – 0 g
- Dietary Fibre – 39 g
- Protein 16 g
- Vitamins and Minerals
- Vitamin A – 0%
- Vitamin C – 0%
- Calcium – 0%
- Iron – 0%
What are its Health Benefits?
- Carom Seeds Soothe Arthritis Pain
Arthritis can be cured using carom seeds or ajwain in two ways. First, their antibiotic properties help reduce redness as well as inflammation, and second carom also acts as anesthetics to heal the pain and swelling. Carom seeds can be made into homemade pastes that is to be applied on the affected joints. It works almost similar to the health benefits of fish oil for arthritis.
- Carom Seeds Help Skin Cleansing
An Ayurvedic medicinal expert said that carom seeds are especially useful yet wonderful in prevent acne pimples naturally plus hiding acne scars by lightening the skin. This could be achieved by applying a homemade carom paste into the acne ridden skin, leave for 10 to 15 minutes before finally rinsing it off. Apart from skin lightening, carom seeds could also effectively remove dirt from the skin.
- Carom Seeds Act as a Mosquito Repellent
Third, carom seeds can also act as a homemade mosquito repellent, or if the mosquito repellents available in stores don’t work on one’s skin. Carom mosquito repellents don’t come as a topical liquid, but instead mixed with mustard oil before being applied onto cardboard or solid surfaces to be placed in room corners. As a bonus, this practice could also act as a natural room freshener.
- Carom Seeds Prevent Greying Hair
Greying hair is normally associated with senior citizens, however young people could also experience it should genetics cause them so. Carom seeds halt the greying of hair, by consuming a cooked mixture of carom leaves with curry leaves, dry grapes, sugar and water.
- Carom Seeds as Oma Water
Oma water is an Ayurvedic water made out of carom seeds, meant for women. Oma water cures indigestion for pregnant women in terms of cleansing the uterus plus stomach while regulating menstruation periods like benefits of cinnamon at the same time. Oma water also reduces gaseousness in infants.
- Carom Seeds as a Wound Disinfectant
Carom seeds can be used as a wound disinfectant thanks to the presence of strong fungicidal and germicidal properties. The crushed mixture itself can be applied directly into the wound for treatment.
- Carom Seeds Treat Ear and Tooth Ache
Ear pain can be alleviated using two drops of ajwain oil into the affected ear. Tooth ache in the mean time can be cured by gargling a mixture of lukewarm water with 1 teaspoons of salt and ajwain respectively, just like the health benefits of chewing cloves for teeth health.
- Carom Seeds as a Remedy for Common Cold
Just like the health benefits of cayenne pepper, ajwain is beneficial for common cold by releasing mucus easily to prevent nasal blockage. In addition, carom seeds could also be useful for more serious respiratory diseases like asthma or bronchitis.
- Carom Seeds Relieves Acidity and also a Solution to Indigestion
Carom seeds or ajwain helps build strong stomach to make it resistant against acidity. In the meantime, an upset stomach, apart from causing extreme discomfort could also seriously disrupt our everyday activities.
Side Effects of Carom Seeds
In general, carom seeds do not trigger any side effects given that it is consumed in moderate amounts. However, like any other things, overconsumption may lead to several side effects that are deemed as adverse.
For example, it may cause a rise in body temperature, stomach ulcer, heartburns, dizziness as well as nausea, increases liver diseases, heart diseases, and others, particularly in expecting mothers. On the other hand, carom may also cause photosensitivity, or allergic reactions due to sunlight.