Ajwain

Ajwain
Ajwain is an Indian spice commonly used as a remedy for stomach problems like indigestion, flatulence and colic pain. Ajwain is famous for its essential oil that is responsible to add taste and aroma. Ajwain seeds possesses carminative, antimicrobial and liver protective properties. It is also known to have blood pressure lowering and bronchodilatory (substance that increases airflow to the lungs) properties[2][3][5].

What are the synonyms of Ajwain?

Trachyspermum ammi, Bishop’s weed, Dipyaka, Yamani, Yamanika, Yavanika, Jain, Yauvan, Yavan, Javan, Yavani, Yoyana, Ajma, Ajmo, Javain, Jevain, Oma, Yom, Omu, Oman, Ayanodakan, Onva, Juani, Omam, Vamu

What is the source of Ajwain?

Plant Based

Benefits of Ajwain

What are the benefits of Ajwain for Asthma?

scientific
Scientific View
The bronchodilating effect of Ajwain dilates the bronchial tubes in the lungs and gives relief in case of mild asthma[5][11].
ayurvedic
Ayurvedic View
Ajwain might be useful in patients with asthma as it balances an aggravated Kapha. Ajwain helps to bring out the mucus easily and helps manage chronic bronchitis and asthma to a great extent.
Tip:
1. Take 1/2 teaspoon Ajwain and 1/2 teaspoon Fennel seeds (Saunf)
2. Boil it in 250 ml water till the water changes color.
3. Drink this while it is still hot twice a day.

What are the benefits of Ajwain for Kidney stone?

scientific
Scientific View
Ajwain has antilithiatic property and lowers the risk of kidney stone formation. A study states that antilithiatic protein present in Ajwain seeds inhibit both calcium oxalate and calcium phosphate deposition and prevent kidney stone formation[12].

What are the benefits of Ajwain for Indigestion?

scientific
Scientific View
Thymol present in Ajwain has carminative and antimicrobial property and is used to manage many gastrointestinal disorders like indigestion, flatulence and diarrhea. Thymol also helps release gastric juices in the stomach thereby enhancing the process of digestion[5].
ayurvedic
Ayurvedic View
Ajwain helps to manage digestive problems by promoting digestive fire due to its Deepan (appetizer) property. It also helps to digest the food easily due to its Pachan (digestive) property and gives relief from flatulence.
Tip:
a. Take 1-2 glass of water in a pan.
b. Add 1 teaspoon of Ajwain seeds to it.
c. Bring it to a boil on low flame for 8-10 mins.
d. Take 2-3 teaspoon of this decoction 3-6 times a day.

How effective is Ajwain?

Insufficient evidence
Asthma, Indigestion, Kidney stone

Precautions when using Ajwain

Advice from Experts
scientific
Scientific View
Ajwain might increase the risk of bleeding during and after surgery. So it is advisable to stop taking ajwain at least 2 weeks before the scheduled surgery[8].
ayurvedic
Ayurvedic View
Ajwain should be taken in a recommended dose and for a recommended duration under an Ayurvedic doctor’s supervision. A high dose can lead to acid reflux and constipation.
ayurvedic
Ayurvedic View
Long term use of Ajwain should be avoided in cases of male infertility or oligospermia.
ayurvedic
Ayurvedic View
Ajwain should be avoided in people who have internal bleeding and ulcerative colitis.
Allergy
scientific
Scientific View
People who are allergic to ajwain or its constituents should use ajwain under Ayurvedic doctor’s supervision.
Breastfeeding
scientific
Scientific View
Due to lack of scientific evidence, medicinal use of ajwain should be avoided during breastfeeding[8].
Moderate Medicine Interaction
scientific
Scientific View
1. Medications changed or metabolised by the liver:
The use of licorice should be avoided alongwith some medications like lovastatin, ketoconazole, itraconazole, fexofenadine, triazolam that are metabolised by the liver Cytochrome P450 3A4 (CYP3A4)[8].
scientific
Scientific View
2. Hepatotoxic drugs:
Ajwain might harm the liver. Therefore, taking ajwain alongwith some medications like acetaminophen, amiodarone, carbamazepine, isoniazid, methotrexate, methyldopa, fluconazole, itraconazole, erythromycin, phenytoin, lovastatin, pravastatin, simvastatin might increase the risk of liver damage[8].
scientific
Scientific View
3. Photosensitizing drugs:
Ajwain might increase your sensitivity to sunlight. Therefore, taking ajwain alongwith some photosensitizing drugs like amitriptyline, Ciprofloxacin, norfloxacin, lomefloxacin, ofloxacin, levofloxacin, sparfloxacin, gatifloxacin, moxifloxacin, trimethoprim/sulfamethoxazole, tetracycline, methoxsalen and Trioxsalen could increase the chances of sunburn, blistering or rashes on the skin parts exposed to the sun[8].
Tip:
It is advised to wear a sunblock or protective covering when spending time in the sun[8]
scientific
Scientific View
4. Anti-coagulant / Anti-platelet Drugs / NSAIDs:
Ajwain might slow blood clotting. Therefore, taking ajwain alongwith some medications that slow blood clotting like aspirin, clopidogrel, diclofenac, ibuprofen, naproxen, heparin, warfarin, dalteparin, enoxaparin might increase the chances of bruising and bleeding[8].
Patients with liver disease
scientific
Scientific View
Ajwain should be used cautiously in patients with liver disease as it can worsen the condition[8].
Pregnancy
scientific
Scientific View
Use of ajwain is considered unsafe during pregnancy as it can cause uterine contractions leading to miscarriage. Therefore, use of ajwain should be avoided during pregnancy[8].
Side Effects
Important
scientific
Scientific View
Ajwain might cause side effects like:
1. Nausea
2. Vomiting
3. Headache
Important
scientific
Scientific View
Ajwain might also harm the liver or the retina of the eye[8].
Important
scientific
Scientific View
Ajwain might cause the skin to become extra sensitive to the sun, therefore can increase the risk of skin cancer[8].
Tip:
It is advised to wear a sunblock especially if you are light skinned[8]

Recommended Dosage of Ajwain

  • Ajwain Churna - ¼ to ½ teaspoon twice a day.
  • Ajwain Capsule - 1 capsule twice a day.
  • Ajwain Tablet - 1 tablet twice a day.
  • Ajwain Oil - 1-3 drops.
  • Ajwain Ark - 5-10 drops twice day.
  • Ajwain Seeds - 1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon or as per your requirement.

How to use Ajwain

1. Ajwain Churna
a. Take ¼ to ½ teaspoon of ajwain churna.
b. Swallow it with warm water before or after meals, to aid better digestion.

2. Ajwain Capsule
a. Take 1 Ajwain Capsule.
b. Swallow it with warm water after taking lunch and dinner.

3. Ajwain Tablet
a. Take 1 Ajwain Tablet.
b. Swallow it warm water after taking lunch and dinner.

4. Ajwain Ark
a. Take 5-10 drops of ajwain ark.
b. Drink it with warm water after lunch and dinner.

5. Ajwain Water
a. Take 1 teaspoon of Ajwain seeds.
b. Add it to 1 glass of warm water.
c. Let it stand overnight.
d. Drink this water whenever required for its potent antispasmodic action[10].
e. This is the highly used traditional remedy for stomachache.

6. Ajwain Decoction
a. Take 1-2 glass of water in a pan.
b. Add 1 teaspoon of ajwain seeds to it.
c. Bring it to boil on the low flame for 8-10 mins.
d. Take 2-3 teaspoon of this decoction 2-3 times a day to get effective relief from asthma[3].
e. Replace water with milk to make the decoction to get effective relief from urinary stones[3].

7. Ajwain Seed
a. Take ¼ to ½ teaspoon of ajwain seeds.
b. Take it with honey or lukewarm milk to increase milk production during lactation period[5].

Benefits of Ajwain

What are the benefits of Ajwain for Chest pain (Angina)?

scientific
Scientific View
Ajwain oil when applied on the chest of an asthmatic patient might lower chest pain due to congestion[13].
ayurvedic
Ayurvedic View
Bronchitis, cough and chest congestion is caused due to an aggravated Kapha and Ajwain might help in case of chest pain due to congestion by balancing Kapha dosha in the body.
Tips:
1. Take 2-3 drops of Ajwain oil.
2. Mix it with mustard or sesame oil.
3. Massage onto the chest and back.
4. Repeat it once or twice day to get maximum relief.

How effective is Ajwain?

Insufficient evidence
Chest pain (Angina)

Precautions when using Ajwain

Allergy
scientific
Scientific View
Apply ajwain to a small area first to test for possible allergic reaction. People who are allergic to ajwain or its constituents should use ajwain under Ayurvedic doctor’s supervision as they may develop runny nose, rash or hives[8].
Tips:
1. Ajwain or leaves paste should be used with honey or any coolant substance if your skin is hypersensitive.
2. Due to its hot potency, Ajwain Seeds oil or paste should be used with coconut oil on scalp.

Recommended Dosage of Ajwain

  • Ajwain Paste - ½ to 1 teaspoon or as per your requirement.
  • Ajwain Powder - ½ to 1 teaspoon or as per your requirement.
  • Ajwain Oil - 1-3 drops or as per your requirement.

How to use Ajwain

1. Ajwain leaves with Honey
a. Take ½ teaspoon of Ajwain leaves paste.
b. Mix it with honey and apply on the affected area of the skin.
c. Use this remedy 2-3 times a week to get rid of skin infections like eczema, psoriasis and skin discolouration[3].

2. Ajwain Oil with Mustard or Sesame oil
a. Take 2-3 drops of Ajwain oil.
b. Mix it with mustard or sesame oil.
c. Massage onto the chest and back.
d. Repeat it once or twice day to get maximum relief.

3. Ajwain Oil with Coconut oil
a. Take 2-3 drops of Ajwain oil.
b. Mix it with coconut oil.
c. Apply evenly on the scalp at night and wash out next morning.
for better relief from dandruff use it three times a week[7].

4. Ajwain Decoction
a. Take 1 glass of water in a pan.
b. Add 1 teaspoon of ajwain seeds to it.
c. Bring it to boil on the low flame for 8-10 mins.

Frequently asked questions

Q. Where can Ajwain be found in day to day life?

scientific
Scientific View
Ajwain is a useful spice used in many food preparations. Ajwain oil is used in the preparation of lotions and ointments in the cosmetic industries[6].

Q. How to store Ajwain?

scientific
Scientific View
Store Ajwain in a glass jar with a well-fitting lid. Store the jar in a cool, dry place.

Q. How to prepare Ajwain water?

scientific
Scientific View
Ajwain water can be easily prepared from Ajwain seeds at home.
1. Take 1 teaspoon of Ajwain seeds.
2. Add it to 1 glass of warm water.
3. Let it stand overnight.
4. Drink this water whenever required for its potent antispasmodic action[10].
5. This is the highly used traditional remedy for stomachache.

Q. Can Ajwain help in intestinal infections?

scientific
Scientific View
Ajwain might lower the risk of intestinal infections due to its anthelmintic property. It interferes with the metabolism of parasites and inhibit their activity. It also helps in contraction of the smooth muscles of the gut, thereby expelling the parasites from the body[3].
ayurvedic
Ayurvedic View
Ajwain might reduce the risk of intestinal infection and worm infestation due to its Krimighna property.

Q. Does Ajwain help in hypertension?

scientific
Scientific View
Ajwain might help control high blood pressure due to its antihypertensive activity. It acts as a vasodilator and regulates blood pressure by relaxing narrowed blood vessels[3][5].

Q. Does Ajwain help in hyperlipidemia?

scientific
Scientific View
Ajwain has antihyperlipidemic property and lowers the level of total cholesterol, LDL-cholesterol and triglycerides. Ajwain also has antioxidant property which prevents lipid peroxidation and helps to fight against the damage caused by the free radicals[9][10].
ayurvedic
Ayurvedic View
Ajwain might improve the metabolism and promote better liver function due to its Deepan (appetizer) and Pachan (digestive) property. By improving metabolism it also helps control high cholesterol level in the body.

Q. Is Ajwain good for your dental health?

scientific
Scientific View
Thymol present in Ajwain oil has antimicrobial activity and can be used to lower the risk of oral diseases and infection caused by bacteria. Ajwain also contains a novel compound which shows antibiolim activity and inhibits bacterial growth[6][7].
ayurvedic
Ayurvedic View
Ajwain helps to reduce dental problem due its Ropan (healing) nature. It also controls bacterial growth because of its Krimighna property.

Q. What are the reported adverse reactions to Ajwain exposure?

scientific
Scientific View
People are advised to undergo patch testing before using Ajwain as people allergic to Ajwain can get runny nose, rash or hives. Excess consumption of Ajwain can make the skin more sensitive to sun which further increases the risk of skin cancer[8].
Tip:
Wearing a sunblock while going out is recommended in light-skinned people[8].

References

  1. The Ayurvedic Pharmacopoeia Of India.Part 1 Volume 1.
  2. Kaur GJ, Arora DS.Antibacterial and phytochemical screening of Anethum graveolens, Foeniculum vulgare and Trachyspermum ammi.BMC Complementary and Alternative Medicine.2009;9(30).
  3. Zarshenas MM, Moein M, Samani SM, et al. An overview on Ajwain (Trachyspermum ammi)pharmacological effects; Modern and traditional.Journal of Natural Remedies.2014;14(1):98-105.
  4. Petramfar P, Moein M, Samani SM, et al.Trachyspermum ammi 10 % topical cream versus placebo on neuropathic pain, a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial.Neurological Sciences.2016;37(9):1449-1455.
  5. Bairwa R, Sodha RS, Rajawat BS.Trachyspermum ammi.Pharmacogn Rev.2012;6(11):56–60.
  6. Khan R, Zakir M, Khanam Z, et al.Novel compound from Trachyspermum ammi (Ajowan caraway) seeds with antibiofilm and anti adherence activities against Streptococcus mutans: A potential chemotherapeutic agent against dental caries.Journal of Applied Microbiology.2010;109:2151–2159.
  7. Ganapathi A, Roy A, Geetha RV.Antimicrobial Effects of Trachyspermum ammi on Oral Microbes.IJSER.2017;8(4):80-85.
  8. WebMD.Bishops Weed: Uses, Side effects, Doses, Interactions [Internet].Atlanta [last updated in 2016].
  9. Asif HM, Sultana S, Akhtar N.A panoramic view on phytochemical, nutritional, ethanobotanical uses and pharmacological values of Trachyspermum ammi L inn.Asian Pac J Trop Biomed.2014;4(2):S545-S553.
  10. Chatterjee S, Goswami N, Kothari N.Evaluation of antioxidant activity of essential oil from Ajwain (Trachyspermum ammi) seeds.International Journal of Green Pharmacy.2013:140-144.
Disclaimer
The content is purely informative and educational in nature and should not be construed as medical advice. Please use the content only in consultation with an appropriate certified medical or healthcare professional.