Asthma, allergies, and black cumin
Nigella, its scientific name Nigella Sativa, also called Habba Sawda or black cumin, is a spice with multiple health benefits. Among the benefits of the black seed, we have long known its antiallergic and antihistamine effect, effective on asthma and allergies.
Even if the idea is to avoid the allergen, natural and effective solutions exist for more comfort.
Find out why and how Nigella helps relieve and treat allergies and allergic asthma. This article is for information only and does not replace consultation with a doctor.
Asthma is a chronic inflammatory disease of the airways (bronchi), which is expressed by the crisis. During a seizure, the person has difficulty inhaling and especially in exhaling air from the lungs.
Seizures can be triggered by different factors such as exertion, humidity, dust, cigarette smoke, pollen, etc. An allergic cause is found in 70 to 80% of adults with asthma and 95% of affected children.
Allergy is a failure of the immune system, which reacts against a normally harmless foreign substance (pollen, dust, food, etc.) as if it were a dangerous substance.
Allergy is therefore the rejection of the immune system of a substance, considered an enemy, in contact with the body, either by ingestion, by inhalation, or by skin contact.
The allergy, therefore, leads to the production of antibodies specific to the allergy, then causes symptoms such as hay fever (rhinitis), conjunctivitis, skin rash (eczema, urticaria, etc.), edema, asthmatic bronchitis, or even asthma.
An antihistamine is a medicine used to relieve certain allergic people. They act specifically on a molecule that plays a major role in the mechanisms of inflammation and allergy: histamine.
Histamine is a neurotransmitter strongly involved in inflammatory and allergic phenomena.
Black seed, whether in seeds or oil, has been used in traditional medicines to treat asthma and respiratory problems for a long time.
We have, for example, found writing by Avicenna, a famous Persian doctor, who already described in the 11th century the interest of the black seed for the treatment of dyspnea and asthma.
It is also in Iran that many studies have been carried out on this subject, studies which show that black seed helps reduce the severity of asthma attacks and relieve the symptoms of allergic rhinitis. These studies have also shown the antitussive properties of the black seed.
This effect would be due to one of the main components of the spice: thymoquinone. It has beneficial effects for many inflammatory diseases, including cardiovascular, diabetes, asthma, kidney disease, etc. It would be this substance that would make black seed a cure for cancer.
Thymoquinone is an antioxidant that helps boost the body’s defense system, which has anti-inflammatory properties, acting as a bronchodilator, antihistamine, and relaxant of the bronchi.
Nigella is, therefore, a natural antihistamine and acts on the various symptoms of allergies and asthma.
A study was carried out jointly between a team of researchers from the University of the College of London and the University of King Abdulaziz of Saudi Arabia, a study carried out on 80 asthma patients.
The researchers formed two groups, one given 500 mg of black seed oil, twice a day, for four weeks, the other group given a placebo. After the protocol, the researchers counted eosinophils in the blood, an important biomarker in clinical studies of asthma.
Result: taking black seed resulted in a significant improvement in the scores of the asthma control test while increasing the number of eosinophils in the blood from 50 to 15 cells per microliter. The researchers also found an improvement in lung function.
A study would have shown that thymoquinone from nigella sativa would be as effective as the drug fluticasone in relieving an asthma attack, but I could not find the source of this information.
Remember that the scientific community is not unanimous on the anti-allergic effects of the black seed, but because it is good edible vegetable oil, with an exceptional composition, and without adverse effects, there is no harm to consume in small doses each day, replacing other fats.
These natural remedies are indicative, they do not replace the advice of a doctor and medical treatment.
Habba sawda can be used in the form of seeds, infusions, inhalation, essential oil, or oil. Black cumin remedies are often associated with honey which is excellent for fighting allergies.
These treatments are to be taken in the event of an allergy, but ideally as a preventive measure throughout the spring and part of the summer, if necessary.
An experience by a research institute in Munich:
In 2012, an experimental treatment was tested by a research institute in Munich: from 4 months before the start of the pollen season, patients took 1 g to 2 g of black seed oil every day.
Result: 70% of participants no longer had any allergy symptoms, and the remaining 30% saw symptoms and their sensitivity decrease.
• 1/2 teaspoon black cumin seeds
• 1/2 teaspoon of honey
• 1 glass of lukewarm water
Dilute the powdered nigella in a glass of lukewarm water and sweeten it with honey.
Drink in the morning on an empty stomach. You can add a second drink in the evening before going to bed.
Check out our article on how to make homemade black seed oil if you only have seeds available. The oil can be used in several different ways: in drink, inhalation, and massage. The best is to combine these 3 uses:
• Internally: mix 1 teaspoon of black seed oil with 1 teaspoon of honey, eat every morning on an empty stomach.
• By inhalation: boil a bowl of water with 2 teaspoons of black seed oil, when it starts to boil well, stop the heating, place the face under a towel and above the bowl, breathe deeply. steam released between 5 to 10 minutes. To do in the evening, and possibly in the morning.
• Externally: massage the chest and neck with black seed oil before going to bed. Possibly the same area, but in the back.
Black seed is used in many different ways, see our article on how to consume black seed for your health to learn more.
There are indeed foods to reduce sensitivity to allergies, here is a non-exhaustive list:
• olive oil
If you are officially allergic to a substance, the basic advice is to avoid the allergen, it sounds simplistic, but not for everyone!
For hay fever, during the spring period, avoid exposure to pollens and grass clippings. Remember to dry the laundry indoors to prevent pollen from sticking to it.
If possible, consider ventilating the house when it rains, as the rain deposits pollens on the ground. Some tips can be effective: wash your hair before going to bed or change your clothes when you get home.
For allergy to chemical compounds, it is necessary to identify what the allergen is and to read the composition of cosmetics, perfume, cleaning products, and other products.
• avoid stress, anxiety, anger, etc.
• take a moment during the day to relax: breathing, relaxation, nap, etc.
• do not drink drinks that are too cold
• avoid dust traps: carpets, rugs, shelves, etc.
• avoid frequenting too dusty environments in general
• use a vacuum cleaner and not a broom
• avoiding cigarette smoke and smoke in general
• beware of air pollution or insecticides
• watch out for animals
• pay attention to efforts especially in dusty spaces
• avoid sulfites and other preservatives
The famous black seed can, therefore, once again, come to the aid of the sick human, if not to cure him, in any case, to relieve him.
I repeat one last time that in case of asthma or allergy, you must consult a doctor or an allergist, talk to them about black seed and its effects, they will give you the best advice