Cumin – the coolant

Introducing the coolant herb- Cumin:

Cumin, scientifically known as Cuminum Cyminum, belongs to family Apiaceae. It is called ‘Jeera’ in common language. It has a pungent, sharp, and slightly sweet taste and is greenish brown in appearance. It can be used in form of either as whole seeds or as jeera powder [1,2]. From the same family Apiaceae are other beneficial herbs black cumin (shahi jeera), nigella (onion seeds), fennel seeds, caraway (Persian cumin) and ajwain which are unique herbs by themselves and are not to be confused with cumin/jeera

Continue reading Cumin – the coolant

Murraya koenigii our very own Curry Leaves: Science and Facts

Just don’t throw away this leaf after cooking. This humble leaf has lot of health benefits. There is much more to it than its flavouring properties.

The leaf of Murraya koenigii belonging to family Rutaceae is used as a natural flavouring agent in various curries. The name ‘Murraya’ commemorates Prof John Murray of Gottingen. Volatile oil is used as a fixative for soap perfume. In addition to the presence of essential oils, the curry leaves contain chlorophyll, beta carotene, folic acid, riboflavin, calcium and zinc which can help in keeping good health. The leaves, bark and root of the plant are used in the indigenous medicine as a tonic, stimulant, carminative and stomachic. The curry tree is native to India. It is cultivated in various other countries such as China, Australia, Nigeria and Sri Lanka. Height of the plant ranges from small to medium.

Continue reading Murraya koenigii our very own Curry Leaves: Science and Facts

Withania somnifera also known as Ashwagandha: Science and Facts

  1. Also Known as: Ashwagandha, Indian ginseng, poison gooseberry, or winter cherry
  2. Medicinally relevant: The root and berry are used to make medicine
  3. The name Ashwagandha is from the Sanskrit language and is a combination of the word ashva, meaning horse, and gandha, meaning smell. The root has a strong aroma that is described as “horse-like.”
  4. Continue reading Withania somnifera also known as Ashwagandha: Science and Facts

‘Living Embryophytes’: Everything you wanted to know about plants

“Water, water, everywhere, Nor any drop to drink”, these lines remind me of the situation when one start out to search on any plants or plant related medicines. There are many webpages explaining one after the other benefits of using a particular plant or plant part/component. Along with it there would be another set of pages which would describe all ‘negative’ that could happen if you use the same plant source. In addition to this there will be ‘plant myths’ which we would have either picked up from our grandmas or ‘expert’ neighbours. This leaves the reader perplexed and he would start his search to understand the science behind plant action. This would open to him the ‘science Pandora box’ in the form of PubMed, Elseveir, Bentham, Science Direct and more libraries and journals. Though the articles from these journals holds the answers to your questions, the technical terms used like activation, inhibition, kinetics, pharmacological action and so on would only lead to more complexity.

Continue reading ‘Living Embryophytes’: Everything you wanted to know about plants