Cumin (Cuminum cyminum)
Description: GRAS- Originally from the Mediterranean area, Cumin is a small annual herb about 50cm ( 20 inches) high with deep green, narrow feathery leaves and tiny white or pink flowers, followed by small oblong seeds.
Common Uses: Cumin’s properties include anti-oxidant, antiseptic, anti-inflammatory, antispasmodic, anti-spasmodic, anti-toxic, bactericidal, carminative, depurative, digestive, diuretic, emmenagogue, larvicidal, nervine, stimulant, and as a tonic stimulant, asthma, bronchial spasm, spasmodic coughs, muscle pain, osteo-arthritis, and rheumatism. Beneficial for accumulation of fluid or toxins, poor circulation, lymphatic congestion, mumps, glandular swelling (testicular), colic, colitis, indigestion, spasms, constipation, useful in hepatitis, increases thyroid function, aids hypo-thyroidism, ), eases testicular inflammation, normalizes menstrual cycle, increases lactation. Said to work as an aphrodisiac and is beneficial with frigidity, impotence (said to increase desire and fertility in males) For the nervous system, it is used for debility, migraine, nervous exhaustion, tiredness, insomnia, lethargy. Cumin is also useful as a warming oil that helps relieve muscular pains and osteoarthritis. For the digestive system it is a stimulant that helps with colic, dyspepsia, flatulence, bloating and indigestion.
Blends well with: Lavender, Rosemary, Chamomile, and essential oils with an oriental flavor.
Aromatic Scent: Cumin has a characteristic spicy, penetrating scent.
History: Known since Bible times, Cumin is mainly used for its digestive properties. The Egyptians used it for headaches. The Pharisees paid their taxes with it and in the Middle Ages, feudal lords paid serfs with Cumin for services rendered.
Cautions: Cumin has photo-toxic properties and direct sunlight should be avoided after any application. It should also be avoided if pregnant and by those with sensitive skin.