Weight loss can be a difficult goal to achieve for many. People are fed up with the fad diets that are being advertised. But is the long run, they don’t achieve any results. But we may have just found a shortcut to weight loss.

The peppery spice cumin has been a popular spice across the world for centuries. Its usage dates back to the Ancient Egyptian period [as a preservative for the mummies] and it has also been mentioned in the Bible, where it was used to pay priests. Now, studies indicate that pepper cumin seeds may help you burn fat. The research was carried out in Iran and the results were published in the Complementary Therapies in Clinical Practice journal.

The goal of the trial was to study to effects of the spice on the fat levels in the blood. A trial group of 88 obese women were divided randomly into two groups. Both groups were supervised under a strict diet. But one group was asked to consume yogurt with cumin seeds twice a day, while the other group was asked to consume plain yoghurt twice a day.

After three months, it was found that the group that consumed cumin has lost more 50% more weight than the other group. What was impressive was that they had lost 14.64% more body fat than the other group.

The other notable changes that accompanied the results were:

  • Significant Loss in waist circumference
  • Reduction in body mass index
  • Reduction in blood lipid levels
  • 23 point drop in triglycerides [compared to only 5 point drop in the other group]
  • 10 point drop in LDL Cholesterol [compared to 1 point drop in the other group]

So how is there such a remarkable difference in the results between the control groups, with just the addition of a few grams of cumin? Researches attribute it to the properties of cumin. Cumin is known to increase the heat in the body, which may cause a temporary increase in the basal metabolic rate. This helps burning more calories than under normal circumstances.

Essential fatty acids such as glycoside saponins help in reducing the cholesterol levels, as they prevent cholesterol from being absorbed and instead cholesterol is excreted. Cumin is also rich in phytosterols which also prevent cholesterol absorption.

Thus researchers concluded that cumin can greatly improve health conditions by reducing cholesterol levels in the body. However, they also advised that deficiency in cholesterol leads to other complications which should be avoided as well.

Cumin is native to Egypt, but it now being cultivated in various parts of the world including the Middle East, the Indian Subcontinent, China and Mediterranean countries. Cumin is added to several dishes in the Indian Cuisine.

So what are the benefits of cumin?

  • A Study in 2008 shows that cumin seeds prevented loss of bone density, similar to estrogen. But cumin does not promote uterine cancer or gain in weight, unlike estrogen.
  • A research from 2010 shows that cumin can reduce the blood sugar levels as well. It was also found to lower oxidative stress and prevented advanced glycated end products (AGE), which are usually the effects of diabetic vascular complications.
  • It also helps reduce inflammation, free fatty acid and triglycerides in the body.
  • Cumin seeds are also known to posses anti-cancerous properties and helps in prevention of colon cancer.
  • It also stimulates secretion of enzymes in the pancreas, which helps in the digestion process.
  • It is known to grant relief from gas, constipation and other digestive disorders.
  • Its antimicrobial properties help in improving the memory function as well.

Cumin has been found to have so many health benefits. So how do you consume this remarkable spice?

  • Add some cumin seeds to roasted nuts or chickpeas for a quick snack
  • It can be added to soups, stews, lentils and other food items
  • Vegetable sautés can be enriched with the addition of a few cumin seeds.
  • Sprinkle some cumin onto eggs before cooking them
  • You could also buy some cumin seed tea.
  • Cumin can also be sprinkled onto meatloaf, hamburgers and meatballs.

Source: Home Healthy Recipes