Cumin is a spice native to India and the Middle East, but is also used as an ingredient in many Asian and Mexican dishes. It can be used as seeds or in powder form. The common color for cumin is amber, but it can also come in black or white. Cumin adds a kick to barbecue, sweet potatoes, and everything in between. But this spice has more to offer than just taste. Cumin may help you lose weight. How? Read this article to learn more about taking cumin for weight loss.
Studies on Cumin for Weight Loss
A study published in Complementary Therapies in Clinical Practice proved the effectiveness of using cumin for weight loss. In the study, 88 women were put on a reduced calorie diet. Some of them were instructed to eat 3 grams of cumin twice daily for three months. The study showed that women who took cumin lost an average of 4.5 pounds more than those who didn’t. The women who consumed cumin also experienced a reduction in waist size, body mass index (BMI), cholesterol, and total fat mass.
The cumin group decreased body fat by 14.64% while the control group lowered theirs by only 4.91%. Both groups received counseling on losing weight, so it’s likely that both groups were eating healthy. Researchers theorized that the cholesterol-lowering effect of cumin is due to the saponin glycosides contained in cumin.
How Cumin Can Help You Lose Weight
Cumin Boosts Digestive Health
The aroma and taste of cumin activates salivary glands in the mouth, signaling the body to get ready for digestion. It is believed that thymol found in cumin stimulates glands that secrete acids and enzymes in the digestive tract responsible for proper digestion of food.
In addition, people with Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) will be glad to know that cumin can help treat this condition. Cumin shows such promise in reversing IBS that researchers are looking at it as a viable alternative to medications. This spice is also effective at relieving gas and diarrhea. For centuries, it has been used as a natural remedy to relieve these problems. By preventing bloating, cumin also helps reduce belly bulge.
Cumin Helps to Balance Blood Sugar Levels
One cause of weight gain is high levels of insulin. This can happen when you eat too much sugary and carbohydrate-rich foods. In this type of scenario, the body releases large amounts of insulin to balance blood sugar levels. If this occurs on a regular basis, it can cause insulin resistance. And that can lead to weight gain, obesity, and type 2 diabetes.
Cumin can increase insulin sensitivity (how the body responds to insulin). Your body won’t crave as much for sugar and carbohydrates to satisfy the demand for more insulin. By helping to balance blood sugar levels, cumin also helps in preventing chronic health problems.
Cumin Is a Powerful Anti-inflammatory
Cumin helps reduce inflammation in the body and digestive tract. When the intestines are inflamed, they do a poor job of digesting food and absorbing nutrients. This can make you feel hungrier than usual because your body is not getting enough nutrients.
When you’re always hungry, you’ll eat more. And this means you’ll be consuming more calories, leading to weight gain. It is important to make sure your gut is healthy, and consuming cumin can help do just that. By reducing inflammation, cumin can help keep your weight in check.
Cumin Contains Nutrients
Many people are not aware that cumin is rich in antioxidants. It also prevents absorption of harmful cholesterol in the gut, helping you lose weight. Cumin contains iron. Iron helps you produce energy, while carrying oxygen to body tissues. It also contains protein and potassium, and adds flavor with only a few calories. Just like other powerful spices, cumin has also been found to increase metabolism, allowing the body to burn more calories.
Cumin Helps You Sleep Better
Since ancient times, cumin has been used as a natural remedy for insomnia and other sleep disorders. When you’re not getting enough sleep, your stress levels go up. In response, your body will release the hormone cortisol, which in turn, can cause the body to store belly fat.
People who don’t get enough sleep are likely to consume more calories throughout the day. Consuming this spice can inhibit stress-induced biochemical changes in the body. It also has anti-stress properties and can help improve memory and concentration.
How to Incorporate Cumin into Your Diet
You don’t need to consume a lot of cumin to lose weight, only a few grams per day. Three grams of ground cumin is equal to about one teaspoon. You can incorporate it into your dishes or mix it with water as a weight loss drink. Here are some suggestions:
- Sprinkle onto vegetables
- Make a cup of cumin tea
- Toast cumin seeds, grind them and sprinkle over foods
- Use it when making hummus
- Add it in guacamole
- Add to brown rice
Taking cumin for weight loss has the potential to be effective and can provide other health benefits. Cumin is considered safe to consume. However, there is not enough information about the safety of taking cumin in pregnant or breastfeeding women. So if you are either of the two, it’s best to avoid supplementing with cumin for now. But overall, incorporating cumin into your diet can quite possibly help turn your body into a fat-burning machine and help you lose weight.