Caraway (Carum carvi) medicinal herb is a plant that is native to the Middle East but it can be found growing in the Northern and Northwestern United States, Europe and Asia. It is a biennial herb and the roots were used to make bread and that was fed to the army of Julius Caesar. The young shoots can also be eaten as vegetable with similarity to carrot and it is also a natural preservative herb.
The seeds, which are also referred to as fruits are very popular in the middle East and Eastern Europe where they are used as a flavoring agent in breads and cakes and as home remedy for a wide variety of ailments. It is of the Apiaceae family and it has history dating back to 1500 BC. No one can deny the fact that it is surely a very ancient medicinal herb and so made its way in history.
The common names are Carum carvi, Persian cumin and Meridian fennel and the constituents are Limonene, Carvone, as well as other types of essential oils. The medicinal properties are digestive, tonic, expectorant, carminative, antifungal, antiseptic, diuretic, anti-inflammatory, stimulant, aromatic, antispasmodic and vermifuge.
When it is used in food preparation as a culinary herb, it is effective in aiding digestion by helping to break down starch and to neutralize stomach acids. The leaves may be boiled in soup, to give it an aromatic flavor.
A teaspoonful of the crushed seeds to a cup of boiling water should be taken one half-hour after meals. It is widely used as a pickling spice.
It is a good herbal remedy to calm babies' nerves making them cry less and sleep more. So it is also seen as one of the children's herbs because it is one of the safest herbs for them and it is paramount that we really have to think of their safety.
For infants and babies, the water will relieve influenza and colic and it is also good to treat flu and colds.
To make this water, use one ounce bruised seeds, 1 pint water and let sit overnight. The dose is one to three teaspoonfuls and taken as often as needed.
The herbal remedies and benefits are very useful as it is very beneficial for the loss of appetite, gas, indigestion, colic, diarrhea, stomach ulcer, menstrual and uterine cramps, bronchitis, bronchial asthma, liver and gall bladder conditions, fever, sore throat as well as wounds.
It is currently been used as a laxative herb and a person can now purchase in stores commercial laxative products made from this medicinal plant.
As a poultice, mix caraway seeds or fruits with cornmeal and apply to remove black and blue marks. It is also good to apply to pains and sprains, especially in the ankles. It is also very effective for ear infections or boils in the ears.
The tea is made by using one teaspoon of the crushed seeds to one cup of
boiling water. Cover and let it stand until cool, reheat portion of caraway tea to be
used when the need arises.
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