The seeds are known to be a powerful antioxidant and promotes a healthy digestion, increases weight loss and assists in keeping one's blood sugar levels balanced.
The seeds have a strong aroma and this is due to the compound known as limonene, carvone and anethole. These are typically used as garnishes for desserts, salads, stews and baked goods.
The in vitro antioxidant activity was determined based on the ability of Carum carvi to inhibit lipid peroxidation in liver and brain homogenates. Daily administration of Carum carvi at doses of 100, 200 and 300 mg/kg body weight one hour prior to induction of stress inhibited the stress induced urinary biochemical changes in a dose dependent manner.
The present study provides scientific support for the antistress (adaptogenic), antioxidant and nootropic activities of Carum carvi extract and substantiates its traditional use as a culinary spice in foods as beneficial and scientific in combating stress induced disorders.
Anticonvulsant - Carum carvi L. (caraway), known as black zeera in Iran, has been indicated for the treatment of epilepsy in Iranian folk medicine. This study evaluated whether the aqueous extract and essential oil of caraway seeds have anticonvulsant effects in mice.
This study showed that the aqueous extract and essential oil of caraway had anticonvulsant properties. However, the essential oil was more potent and effective than was the aqueous extract as an anticonvulsant. Additionally, the anticonvulsant effect of caraway was not due to a muscle relaxant activity. These findings support the acclaimed antiepileptic effect of caraway in folk medicine and propose its potential use in petit mal seizure in humans.
Digestion Health - Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) is a frequent gastrointestinal disorder, with only limited evidence regarding self-management approaches. This study tested the efficacy of caraway oil poultices (CarO) for treating IBS.
This randomized controlled open-label cross-over trial included three treatment periods with hot CarO and hot olive oil poultice (OlivH) or nonheated poultices (OlivC) with olive oil as control interventions. Patients applied each intervention daily for 3 weeks.
Hot caraway oil poultices appear effective and safe, although their effects may be a result of the heat application. Patients reported highest levels of subjective benefit from caraway oil poultices, making their use appropriate in the self-management of IBS.
The results showed diminished levels of intestinal, colonic and caecal LPO products, such as conjugated dienes (CD), lipid hydroperoxides (LOOH) and thiobarbituric acid reactive substances (TBARS) and also the antioxidants superoxide dismutase (SOD), catalase (CAT), reduced glutathione (GSH) and glutathione reductase (GR) in DMH treated rats, which were significantly reversed (P<0.05) on caraway supplementation.
The study showed that caraway supplementation at a dose of 60 mg kg(-1) had a modulatory role on tissue LPO, antioxidant profile and prevented DMH-induced histopathological lesions in colon cancer rats.
Weight Loss - This study investigates the weight-lowering effects of caraway extract (CE) on physically active, overweight and obese women through a randomized, triple-blind, placebo-controlled clinical trial. Seventy overweight and obese, healthy, aerobic-trained, adult females were randomly assigned to two groups (n = 35 per group).
The treatment group, compared with placebo, showed a significant reduction of weight, body mass index, body fat percentage, and waist-to-hip ratio. No changes were observed in lipid profile, urine-specific gravity, and blood pressure of subjects. The results suggest that a dietary CE with no restriction in food intake, when combined with exercise, is of value in the management of obesity in women wishing to lower their weight, BMI, body fat percentage, and body size, with no clinical side effects.
Results of this study suggest a possible phytotherapeutic approach for caraway extract in the management of obesity.