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What is black seed oil used for?

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Quick Answer

Research has found that patients who take black seed oil by mouth experience relief from asthma symptoms, including coughing, wheezing and lung function, says WebMD. The prescription drugs theophylline and salbutamol may be more effective treatments, however.

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Full Answer

Black seed oil has been used for medicinal purposes for thousands of years. It was historically used for headache, pink eye, nasal congestion, intestinal worms, abscesses and parasites and was found in King Tut's tomb, says WebMD. Today, it is used as an alternative treatment for respiratory conditions, including asthma, allergies, cough, bronchitis, emphysema, flu, swine flu and congestion.

The safety and effectiveness of black seed oil as a treatment for other symptoms or conditions has not been definitively confirmed by research. However, black seed oil is used in alternative medicine to treat digestive tract conditions such as gas, colic, diarrhea, dysentery, constipation and hemorrhoids, says WebMD. Other conditions include eczema, seizures, high cholesterol, high blood pressure, metabolic syndrome, opiate withdrawal, sore throat and swollen tonsils, menstrual disorders and achy joints. Some people use it to boost immunity or to prevent cancer, although, again, research has not confirmed the effectiveness of these uses.

According to Superhumanfoods.org black seed oil, is derived from the nigella sativa plant and is also known as black onion seeds and black cumin. Other names include fennel flower, nutmeg flower, Roman coriander and black caraway seed. Black seed is also used as a flavoring for foods.

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