Ginger Oil

Ginger-oil-bannerGinger oil is known as the “Oil of Empowerment” and is called in Ayurveda as Mahaushadha, meaning “universal medicine”, predominantly for its ability to heal the mind, body and soul, which are the three vital pillars of perfect health in Ayurveda.

Along with turmeric, galangal and cardamom, Ginger is yet another potent limb of the Zingiberaceae plant family. As a common culinary spice, Ginger is found in countless kitchens across the world and takes the pride of being used as a natural home remedy for addressing digestive and respiratory disorders.

Botanically named as Zingiber officinale, this powerful herb is called as Singara, Katubhadra and Srngaveram in Sanskrit. Ginger in any form, say fresh ginger, dried ginger or ginger extracts like juice, essential oil or powder has a bunch of absolute healing wisdom.

Ayurveda, the oldest healing system on earth prescribes Ginger as a remedy for indigestion, flatulence, nausea, loss of appetite, morning sickness, bronchitis, menstrual cramps, respiratory infections, arthritis, cancer and for enhancing the immune power. It is also recommended for treating fear, hopelessness, instability and for rekindling the inner fire for ultimatum.

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Historical importance of Ginger:

Ginger is one among the oldest of spices used for more than 4400 years across different cultures universally. With more than 1,200 species, Ginger has been proved scientifically for treating numerous health disorders. Its name is extracted from a Sanskrit word ‘srngaveram’, which means ‘horn root’.

According to the report by the University of Maryland Medical Center, “It has a long history of being used as medicine in Asian, Indian, and Arabic herbal traditions.” It has also been said that Ginger has been used in the Traditional Chinese Medicine for treating toothache, nausea, stomach upset, diarrhea and certain other digestive disorders.

Ginger and its other extracts have been a vital part of the ancient Ayurvedic remedies for obesity, poor metabolism, abdominal pain, motion sickness, impotence, weak memory, arthritis, flu, menstrual pain and as a heart tonic. It has its name etched in the most respected epic of India, Mahabharata.

This aromatic spice was recommended by King Henry VIII of England in the 16th century for fighting against the great plague. Greeks used Ginger as to combat the harmful effects of poison.

It is said that the West African women in Senegal knit belts of Ginger to restore their partner’s reproductive potency. Even today, Ginger is used in various dishes across the world for granting the finesse flavor and taste of this miraculous spice with mammoth health benefits.

Chemical constituents and therapeutic properties of Ginger essential oil:

The major chemical components of Ginger essential oil are camphene, a-pinene, b-pinene, zingiberene, geraniol, borneol, neral, geranyl acetate, 1,8-cineole, citral, b-bisabolene, linalool, nerol, geranial and y-terpineol.

These components contribute to its healing properties like carminative, antibacterial, anti-inflammatory, expectorant, analgesic, aphrodisiac, antioxidant, stimulant, antiseptic and emmenagogue.

Ayurvedic health benefits of Ginger essential oil:

Nothing is as astonishing as Mother Nature and the best wonder in the world is the human body that works like a magic to keep one going on and on. Ayurveda states that human beings are a part of nature and their illness and health depends upon their harmony with nature.

It further lights up this thought by stating that nature is made up of five vital elements, namely earth, water, fire, air and space and to our wonder, it’s also been said that a human being also has all these five elements.

Where earth is the muscles and bones, water is the blood, fire is the energy for various vital functions, air is our breath and space is the soul that co-ordinates all other functions and keeps us living.

The concept of healing in Ayurveda solely depends upon nature as it says that all the other things on earth are made for making mankind happy and healthy. For example, earth has 92 elements like calcium, potassium, magnesium, iron etc, and the human body also has all these 92 elements.

When a person lacks magnesium or calcium energy, he/she can take Ginger, which is rich in magnesium and calcium, whereas Ginger grows by absorbing the magnesium and calcium element from earth. How interesting it is, right?

Ayurveda regards every individual as a unique part of nature and suggests that the treatment should also be unique depending upon their individual constitution that is made up of three doshas namely vata, pitta and kapha.

Vata is a representation of air and ether, pitta stands for fire and water and kapha symbolizes earth and water. Vata controls respiratory and nervous functions, pitta takes care of metabolism and body temperature and kapha governs the structure, sustenance and movement of fluids in the body.

Balance between these three doshas indicates health, and imbalance due to unhealthy food habits and change in lifestyle symbolizes illness. Ayurvedic remedies aim at correcting these dosha imbalances with the help of herbs, essential oils, yoga, meditation, physical exercises, Ayurvedic routine, balanced diet and prayer.

Ginger essential oil is said to pacify kapha and vata dosha and aggravate pitta dosha with its warming, spicy, rich, woody and drying energy and aroma.

The Ayurvedic health benefits of Ginger essential oil are:

Ginger-oil-broucher1. Benefits to the digestive system:

Ginger is popularly known as Adrak in India and is a quick natural remedy for relieving indigestion, bloating, flatulence, dyspepsia, vomiting, spasms, nausea, loss of appetite, piles and colic.

Dr. Jaishree Bhattacharjee, a renowned Ayurvedic Consultant says, “Ginger has many useful minerals like calcium, phosphorus, iron, magnesium, copper, zinc and few others. It is a wonderful carminative, anti-flatulent and stimulant.”

Ginger essential oil has the potential to increase pitta energy that is responsible for the digestive fire. Add 2 drops of Ginger essential oil to your diffuser or air freshener before meals and let it stay there till you complete your food.

Inhaling the warming aroma of this oil enhances the appetite and improves the process of digestion, supports absorption of essential nutrients by the body and aids in alleviating the toxic substances with its hot potency, but for which the toxins or ama may otherwise cause serious illnesses.

You can also add 2 drops of Ginger oil to warm bathing water before going to bed or before starting a hectic day. This refreshing bath aids in promoting peaceful sleep, free from bloating, indigestion, gastric pain and other digestive disorders. If it is for the morning, Ginger has a handful of bright benefits like stimulating your nerves, rejuvenating your cells, improving your appetite and augmenting your mental power for facing your day to day challenges.

Ginger and its essential oil have been proven best for treating motion sickness even in children. Numerous studies have witnessed the effectiveness of Ginger is better than the effects of dimenhydrate, which is the most important ingredient in over-the-counter motion sickness and seasickness remedies like Dramamine.

It works by stimulating the flow of saliva and other digestive juices, pacifies the stomach, relieves pain due to gas and diarrhea, controls vomiting and supports easy discharge of stools. Mix 1 drop of Ginger essential oil with 10 drops of sesame oil and massage it gently on your stomach and abdomen for treating constipation and motion sickness.

2. Benefits to the mind:

Ginger essential oil is an effective natural remedy for treating emotional problems like fear, abandonment, and lack of self-confidence and of motivation. Using 2 drops of Ginger essential oil in diffuser, aromatic candles or in bath can help in improving memory power, treat mood swings, tendency to procrastinate, disconnectiveness, hopelessness, stress, anxiety, exhaustion, restlessness and depression.

Ginger oil is an excellent stimulant to the mind, body and soul. The encouraging aroma of this oil rekindles the inner fire and grants the power and confidence to step ahead and lead with courage and confidence.

Massaging your upper and lower abdomen (the root, sacral and solar plexus chakra) with 2 drops of Ginger oil with 1 ml of coconut oil aids in eliminating fear and mental blocks, enhancing the sense of trust, mental strength and enlightening the divine power rested within.

3. Benefits to the reproductive system:

Ginger is simply hot to support your intimacy with your partner as it has enormous aphrodisiac properties that have been assisting in the treatment of impotency, loss of libido, loss of sexual interest and premature ejaculation.

Gill Farrer-Halls in his book ‘The Aromatherapy Bible’ states that Ginger oil is an effective aphrodisiac and acts as a mild stimulant also. 2 drops of Ginger oil blended with 1 drop of Sandalwood oil and 1 drop of Rose oil added to your diffuser can drive in the positive energy required both physically and mentally for a complete “we time” together, by toning up the sexual organs and pacifying your mood.

Massaging your lower abdomen with 2 drops of Ginger oil blended with 1 ml of olive oil can be of great help in treating the problems of the female reproductive system by regularizing blocked or irregular menstruation, relieving menstrual pain and treating other problems associated with menstruation like nausea, dizziness, fatigue and mood fluctuations. Inhaling the reviving aroma of Ginger oil can aid in treating nausea and morning sickness during pregnancy.

4. Benefits to the respiratory system:

Ginger essential oil has the power to reduce kapha dosha. According to Ayurveda, excess of kapha energy is the main reason for respiratory problems like bronchitis, cold, sinusitis, asthma and congestion.

Ginger oil also has expectorant properties that aids in loosening the mucous and phlegm deposits and with its antiseptic properties, it assists in curbing the growth of microbes that spread respiratory infections.

Researchers of the Columbia University have proved that the components in Ginger root have properties that help asthma patients to breathe easily. The post-doctoral research fellow in the Columbia University Department of Anesthesiology, Elizabeth Townsend says, “In our study, we demonstrated that purified components of ginger can work synergistically with β-agonists to relax ASM.”

Adding 2 drops of Ginger essential oil in steam inhalation can assist in reducing cough, clear chest and nasal congestion, relieving sinusitis and helping in treating cold and flu symptoms. You can also rub your chest, back and throat with your regular Vapor rub mixed with 1 drop of Ginger oil for quick relief. Even today Ginger tea is a delicious and healthy way to keep away from cold, cough and flu in the Indian kitchens.

5. Benefits to the muscular system:

Muscular pain is a common illness that most of us experience in our day to day lives. Headache, back pain, knee pain and pain all over the body after a strenuous work are not a surprise to many of us.

What we all do is, rush to the pharmacy and grab pain relieving creams and sprays that grant relief. Most of us fail to realize that these over-the-counter remedies give temporary relief only and force us to use them again when the pain peeps out even worse the next time.

Ginger essential oil has anti-inflammatory, anti-rheumatic and analgesic properties that make it an exuberant natural aid for treating muscular pain, migraine pain, rheumatic pain, back pain, headache, joint pain, arthritis and weakness.

Excess of vata and kapha energy in the body lead to swelling, water stagnation, accumulation of toxic substances, inflammation, sore muscles, weakened nerves and muscular tension.

With its potent to reduce vata and kapha dosha and increase pitta or the fire energy, 3 drops of Ginger essential oil blended with 1 teaspoon of almond oil massaged gently on the painful area, spreads warmth in the body, reduces swelling and inflammation by eliminating toxic substances and water deposits from the body through urine and sweat and relieves pain by causing numbness in the painful parts.

6. Benefits to the entire system:

Ginger and its essential oil also act as a heart tonic and helps in improved circulation. According to the University of Maryland Medical Center, few studies have proved that ginger has the potential to prevent blood clotting, lower cholesterol, prevent blood vessels from getting blocked, which may otherwise lead to stroke or heart attack.

Ginger essential oil has antioxidant properties that have been proved efficacious in the prevention and treatment of cancerous cells.  A 2011 study on ‘Antioxidant activity of the volatile oils of Zingiber officinale (ginger)’ published in Spatula-DD, A peer reviewed journal on complementary medicine and drug discovery says “Ginger extracts have reduced total cholesterol, triglycerides and phospholipids levels, as well as cellular cholesterol accumulation, reduce DPPH absorption, scavenge free radicals and it has potential to improve the histopathological lesion occurring in different layers of the arterial tissue. In other word it is effective in attenuating of atherosclerosis development.”

This dominant herb has also been witnessed effective in the treatment of ovarian cancer. A 2006 study by the University Of Michigan Comprehensive Cancer Center presented in the annual meeting of the American association for Cancer Research stated that using Ginger solution (made with Ginger powder and water) on ovarian cancer cells ended up in their death. These cancerous cells died either due to autophagy (attacked/digested themselves) or due to apoptosis (committed suicide).

The book “A Complete Guide To Understanding and Using Aromatherapy For Vibrant Health and Beauty,” says that Ginger essential oil is effective in treating varicose veins and cellulites.

With rich vitamin C, Ginger oil can also help in treating scurvy. Mix 1 drop of Ginger oil with 10 drops of jojoba oil and apply it on the affected area for enhancing the skin health and reducing the symptoms of aging with its antioxidant properties.

Other health benefits:

Ginger essential oil can also assist in treating rheumatism, arthritis, muscular pain, loss of libido, problems of the lymphatic system, sore throat, chills, disconnectiveness, improper blood circulation, increased blood sugar levels, back pain and mood swings.

Disclaimer:

This article is only for the purpose of information and is not meant for treating or replacing any prescription drugs or professional medical advice. Always consult your Ayurvedic practitioner before choosing the right essential oil for your unique health condition and individual constitution.

Never use essential oils internally and always use essential oils in a diluted manner as pure and organic essential oils are highly concentrated liquids and may cause allergic reactions if used directly on the skin. Care should be taken, if you are a pregnant or nursing woman.

Thought for the day:

Deep in their roots, all flowers keep the light.
-Theodore Roethke

Suggested Reading:

  1. Ginger: Common Spice and Wonder Drug by Paul Schulick
  2. A Spoonful of Ginger: Irresistible Health-Giving Recipes from Asian Kitchens by Nina Simonds
  3. The Chopra Center Herbal Handbook: Forty Natural Prescriptions for Perfect Health by David Simon M.D., Deepak Chopra M.D.
  4. Ayurveda & Aromatherapy: The Earth Essential Guide to Ancient Wisdom and Modern Healing by Dr. Light Miller, Dr. Bryan Miller
  5. Ginger Recipes: 33 Mouth-Watering Recipes Using Natures Super Spice for Weight Loss, Health, and Beauty. (The Simple Recipe Series) by Ready Recipe Books

Reference Links:

  1. Ginger by The University of Maryland Medical Center
  2. Ginger Beats Drugs in Defeating Cancer, Motion Sickness and Inflammation by Health Impact News Daily
  3. Ginger is a powerful aphrodisiac and increases sexual prowess by Namini Wijedasa published in infolanka.com
  4. What are the benefits of Ginger? By Medical News Today
  5. Ginger – Ayurveda’s Root To Good Health by Ayurveda Acharya

Kappor Katcheri Oil

Kapoor-katcheri-bannerKnown as Shati in Ayurveda, Kappor Katcheri herb and the essential oil extracted from the rhizomes of this plant through steam distillation process has been in use traditionally for treating respiratory problems (like bronchitis and asthma), wounds, fever, ulcers, cough, indigestion, hiccough, inflammation and certain other eye problems.

Kappor Katcheri is a Hindi name and is scientifically called as Hedychium spicatum. It is a limb of the Ginger family Zingiberaceae. It is a small hardy ginger with bright and large white and orange flowers and is indigenous to the subtropical Himalayan regions in India at an altitude of 1000 to 3000 m.

Purchase Kappor Katcheri Oil – Retail – 4 oz – CLICK HERE

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Historical uses of Kappor Katcheri:

The aromatic and herbaceous rhizomes of Kappor Katcheri herb has been used in various traditions for treating numerous health conditions. The Ayurvedic healing system use this herb for curing respiratory problems, poor blood circulation, indigestion, wounds and inflammation. It was used as a natural remedy for treating diarrhea, vomiting, snake bite, fever and inflammation in the Traditional Chinese Medicine.

Kappor Katcheri was used in the Tibetan medicine for its heating potency and acrid taste and was also used as an effective insect repellant. Known as Sanna in Japan, the rhizomes of this plant are also used in preparing Attar Ekangi in India.

Therapeutic properties and chemical constituents of Kappor Katcheri oil:

The major chemical constituents present in Kappor Katcheri essential oil are limonene, cineole, terpinene, linalool, p-cymene, terpeneol and phellandrene. These components contribute to its remedial properties like antioxidant, antifungal, hypoglycemic, in vitro pediculicidal, spasmolytic, cytotoxic, tranquilizer, CNS depressant, febrifuge, anti-inflammatory, anthelmintic, analgesic, antispasmodic, hypotensive, vasodilator and antimicrobial.

Ayurvedic health benefits of Kappor Katcheri oil:

Ayurveda is the oldest of all healing methodologies on earth dating back to more than 5,000 years. This ancient science aims at educating humanity about the natural remedies in treating illnesses, ways to prevent sickness and pass towards healthy aging.

The Ayurvedic Physicians like Charaka, known as the Father of Medicine and Sushruta called as the Father of Surgery have enlisted almost all the possible natural remedies for a wide range of illnesses in the Ayurvedic encyclopedias well-known as Charaka Samhita and Sushruta Samhita respectively.

These ancient treasures talk about all types of healing herbs on earth and their effectiveness in curing various illnesses. According to these books, Kappor Katcheri is an excellent remedy for treating respiratory illnesses like asthma and bronchitis.

Along with herbs, Ayurvedic treatments include the use of essential oils, practicing healthy and balanced diet, Ayurvedic routine, meditation, physical exercises and yoga. Every human being is a unique part of nature according to Ayurveda and it suggests that the treatment should also be unique according to an individual’s constitution even for the same illness.

This constitution is made up of three vital bio-energies known as doshas that is vata, pitta and kapha. Every one of us will have a predominance of any one of these doshas that determines our health, personality and behavioral attributes.

Balance between these doshas indicates good health and imbalance between these doshas symbolize illness. Ayurvedic medications are prescribed in such a way that it treats dosha imbalances. Kappor Katcheri essential oil lessens pitta and kapha dosha and aggravates vata dosha.

The Ayurvedic health benefits of Kappor Katcheri oil are:

Kappor-katcheri-broucher1. Excellent support for respiratory problems:

The powdered rhizomes of Hedychium spicatum has been used clinically and in the traditional healing system for treating respiratory problems like respiratory inflammatory conditions including asthma, bronchospasms and bronchitis. It has also been proved effective in treating cough, cold, headache, fever, sinusitis and certain other breathing difficulties.

A 2012 study on ‘Pharmacological evaluation of extracts of Hedychium spicatum (Ham-ex-Smith) rhizome by Shivani Ghildiyal, Manish K. Gautam,Vinod K. Joshi, and Raj K. Goel’ states that the rhizomes of Hedychium spicatum has been reported to contain antiasthmatic, anti-inflammatory, vasodilator, hypotensive, spasmolytic and hypoglycemic properties.

Based upon various animal studies on mouse and Guinea pigs, this study concluded that the rhizomes of H. spicatum has anti-histaminic, bronchodilator, analgesic, anti-inflammatory activities that are essential to soothe pain, inflammation, asthma, bronchoconstriction and other respiratory problems.

Heat 2 drops of Kappor Katcheri oil with 1 ml of coconut oil and apply it on the throat, chest and back or add 2 drops of this oil in steam inhalation for relieving from congestion, bronchial spasms, asthma, cough and breathing difficulties.

The spicy and camphoraceous aroma of this oil along with its chemical constituents like terpinene and cineole have been proved as powerful analgesic and anti-inflammatory agents that assist in treating respiratory problems since the ancient times.

2. Natural antimicrobial aid:

The rhizomes and the essential oil of Kappor Katcheri herb are said to exhibit inhibitory activity against numerous Gram positive and Gram negative bacteria including Staphylococcus aureus and against few other fungal cultures according to a 2006 study on ‘Antimicrobial activity of Hedychium spicatum.’

Bacteria, fungi and certain other micro organisms are responsible for numerous health problems. These organisms damage the cells and weaken the immune system while making the body susceptible for diseases.

As a natural antimicrobial agent, Kappor Katcheri essential oil comes to your rescue when there’s a need to keep micro organisms at bay. Add 2 drops of this oil in warm bathing water to prevent and protect you from microbes. You can add 1 drop of Kappor Katcheri oil with 10 drops of coconut oil and apply it on wounds, ringworm, acne, cuts, athlete’s foot, nail infections and other skin allergies for visible results.

3. Scavenges free radicals:

Kappor Katcheri oil has antioxidant properties that assist in scavenging free radicals, which are known as reactive molecules engaged in numerous physiological processes and human illnesses like arthritis, cancer, ischemia, alcoholism, ageing, liver injuries and certain other toxin induced reactions.

A 2011 study on the ‘Antioxidant activity of Hedychium spicatum Buch.- Ham. Rhizomes’ by T Sravani and Padmaa M Paarakh, Department of Pharmacognosy, The Oxford College of Pharmacy, India published in the Indian Journal of Natural Products and Resources demonstrated that the rhizomes of Hedychium spicatum plant possess strong antioxidant activity.

You can use the essential oil extracted from these rhizomes as bath oil by adding 2 drops of Kappor Katcheri oil to your bath tub or by using it in massage by blending 4 drops of Kappor Katcheri oil with 2 ml of sesame oil for combating the effects of free radicals.

4. Alleviates pain and inflammation:

Kappor Katcheri oil possesses analgesic, anti-inflammatory, spasmolytic and tranquilizer effects that aid in treating pain, inflammation, arthritis and rheumatic problems. Blend 2 drops of Kappor Katcheri oil with 1 ml of sesame oil and massage on the affected area or add it in hot or cold compress to relieve pain, inflammation, spasms and irritation. When applied to the painful parts this blend will cause numbness and reduce your pain gradually.

5. Guards the entire system:

Apart from these major uses, Kappor Katcheri oil is known for its effectiveness in treating gastric ulcer, fever, intestinal infections, abdominal pain, blood purification, eye diseases and hypertension.

Disclaimer:

This article is only for the purpose of education and is not meant to replace any prescription medicine or professional advice of a medical expert. Do not use essential oils internally. Always use essential oils in a diluted form as pure and organic essential oils are highly concentrated liquids and can cause harm if used directly on skin.

It is advisable to do a patch test on your skin before using essential oils to test its suitability to your skin condition. Consult your Ayurvedic practitioner regarding the use of best essential oils for your unique health condition and individual constitution.

Thought for the day:

Every flower is a soul blossoming in nature. -Gerard De Nerval

Suggested Reading:

  1. Identification of Chemical Constituents of Plant Hedychium Spicatum: Methods for Phytochemical analysis and standardization by Alok Pratap Singh
  2. Evaluation of CNS potential of Hedychium spicatum: Rhizome Extract by Versha Parcha, Vichitra Kaushik, Arun Kumar
  3. Hardy Gingers: Including Hedychium, Roscoea, and Zingiber by T. M. E. Branney
  4. Paradise Found: Growing Tropicals in Your Own Backyard by Norman Winter

Reference Links:

  1. Pharmacological evaluation of extracts of Hedychium spicatum (Ham-ex-Smith) rhizome by Shivani Ghildiyal, Manish K. Gautam,Vinod K. Joshi, and Raj K. Goel published in PubMed
  2. Antioxidant activity of Hedychium spicatum Buch.- Ham. Rhizomes by T Sravani and Padmaa M Paarakh, Department of Pharmacognosy, The Oxford College of Pharmacy, India published in the Indian Journal of Natural Products and Resources
  3. Hedychium spicatum – Buch.-Ham by Plants for a Future
  4. Antimicrobial activity of Hedychium spicatum by G.S. Bhist, A.K. Awasthi, T.N. Dhole, Department of Microbiology, Sanjay Gandhi Post Graduate Institute of Medical Sciences, Lucknow, India published in ScienceDirect

Pumpkin Seed Oil

Pumpkin-bannerThere’s no Halloween without Pumpkin and there are no Pumpkin seeds without enormous healing values. These seeds are highly nutritious and the oil extracted Pumpkin seeds are often celebrated for its amazing remedial benefits to prostate problems like benign prostatic hyperplasia or BPH, diabetes, arthritis and kidney disorders.

Widely known as Pepitas, Pumpkin seeds and its oil are used and recommended in Ayurvedic healing for treating urinary problems, low bone density, arthritis, bed-wetting, joint pain, vascular diseases, controlling cholesterol levels (LDL) and for supporting the functions of the kidneys and prostate.

Purchase Pumpkin Seed Oil – Retail – CLICK HERE

Chemical constituents and therapeutic properties of Pumpkin Seed Oil:

Palmitic acid, linoleic acid, oleic acid, myristic acid, stearic acid, palmitoleic acid, linolenic acid and behenic acid are the major chemical components of Pumpkin seed oil. It also contains carotenoids like β-carotene and lutein and tocopherols including ϒ- gamma, β- beta and delta tocopherols.

Pumpkin seeds are also a rich source of zinc, proteins, magnesium, tryptopan (serotonin), thiamine and manganese.

The remedial values of Pumpkin seed oil are antioxidant, anti-arthritic, anti-parasitic, anti-inflammatory, alterative, antimicrobial, detoxifying, anti-hypertensive, emollient, nutritive, anti-inflammatory, sedative, moisturizing and tranquilizing.

Historical uses and importance of Pumpkin Seed and its oil:

Pumpkins are one among the most popular staple food and are said to have been originated in America. The term ‘Pumpkin’ is extracted from the Greek word Pepon and the meaning is ‘large melon’. Pumpkin seeds are also known as Pepitas and the Mexican Spanish term ‘pepita de calabaza’ simply stands for ‘little seed of squash’.

These petite but powerful seeds are said to have been discovered in the Mexican caves in 7,000 BC. The tribal populace of Native America, including the Aztec cultures (1300 to 1500 AD) has used Pumpkin and its seeds for food and medicinal purposes.

The greatest news is that Pumpkins have been planted in about 100,000 acres across U.S and Illinois is the leading producer of Pumpkins. China is the largest producer of Pumpkins in the world followed by U.S, India, Mexico, Ukraine and Russia.

The United States pharmacopoeia listed Pumpkin seeds as an effective medicine for treating parasites and these seeds have been used in the traditional and alternative medicinal practices for treating gastric disorders, urinary illnesses, prostate problems, tapeworms and intestinal parasites.

Pumpkin has been an excellent food for Pilgrims, especially for its high nutritious profile and its potent to stay fresh. This pilgrim verse written in circa 1633 utters all that is vital about Pumpkins.

“For pottage and puddings and custards and pies
 Our pumpkins and parsnips are common supplies,
 We have pumpkins at morning and pumpkins at noon,
 If it were not for pumpkins we should be undoon.”

Even today Pumpkins and its seeds are used as a wholesome food by the pilgrims and have been employed as an essential part of everyday cooking across the world, including the Asian, European and Mediterranean countries.

Pumpkin seeds are loved and recommended as a healthy snack across the globe for numerous reasons and you can bank upon them during your next munch.

Ayurvedic health benefits of Pumpkin Seed oil:

Pumpkin seed oil is said to have a positive effect on all the three doshas or the fundamental energies of life.

Botanically called as Cucurbita pepo, Pumpkin like all other members of the Cucumber family, Cucurbitaceae, it is trusted as an excellent detoxifying agent in Ayurvedic healing. Thus Pumpkin and its nutrient seeds and oil are prescribed for discarding ama or toxic deposits in the system.

Ayurvedic texts prescribe its use in cleansing the bladder and other adjoining organs of the body.

The most awe-inspiring fact is that Pumpkin seeds are extremely rich in an amino acid called as tryptopan that assists in eliminating the toxins in the mind, thus assisting the treatment of stress, anxiety, trauma, anger and is also proven to enhance your cognitive abilities and tranquilize the nervous system.

Ayurveda beckons Pumpkin and its seeds as livotonic, means a tonic for the liver that helps in strengthening the liver, regulates its normal functioning and support in the treatment of hepatitis, degeneration and inflamed liver conditions.

None of us can deny that every day is a new day and a new birth in your life and it’s appropriate to call it as a newer opportunity and a souvenir indeed.

The fruit of pessimism can suppress you while the seeds of optimism can impress your living. In a much similar way, disease is not a matter of agony and is instead a blessing to be happy about.

Ayurveda regards disease or sickness as an opportunity to discern the imbalance in your system. Treating the root cause of an illness can save your head now and prevent such conditions in the future as well.

Nature is the best medicine and everything present in nature is made up of five fundamental elements of Nature like earth (muscles and bone), fire (digestive fire and body temperature), water (blood and other vital fluids), air (all that we breathe) and space (spirit and soul).

Being a part of nature, any illness is an indication of being of out of balance with nature. Using natural medications can certainly assist in permanent remedy of a disease and support in leading a balanced and hearty living.

Ayurveda prescribes natural medications like herbal remedies, Ayurvedic essential oils (life force of plants), yoga (sister science of Ayurveda), meditation (tonic to the soul), Pranayama (conscious breathing technique), Abhyanga (Ayurvedic massaging), Panchakarma (detoxification practices), Dinacharya (Ayurvedic routine) and more.

Here’s the heart of this article and you’re right. Pumpkin seed oil can assist in the treatment of the following health conditions:

Pumpkin-Seed-Oil1. Supports in the treatment of BPH (benign prostatic hyperplasia) and certain other prostate problems:

Pumpkin seeds are the most favorite snack of men in Bulgaria, Ukraine and Turkey. These seeds are loaded with high zinc content and are responsible for supporting prostate health and aids in decreasing the size of prostrate.

Benign prostatic hyperplasia or BPH is a medical condition in men, which is characterized with enlarged or inflamed prostates. Even though it is non-cancerous in nature, BPH requires prompt medical attention. This in general enlarges in middle-aged and elderly men along with age.

Recent studies witness that the presence of cucurbitacins, a chemical component in Pumpkin seeds assist in thwarting testosterone (male hormone) into dihydrotestosterone (an associated element) that is said to encourage the production of prostrate cells.

The celebrated book ‘An A-Z Guide to Healing Foods’ by Elise Marie Collins describes that Pumpkin seed oil have been proved as an alternative remedy for treating benign prostate enlargement and its varied symptoms. Marie also suggests that the use of Pumpkin seed oil along with other natural medications like Saw Palmetto for effective treatment of prostate conditions.

What is all in Pumpkin seeds that can help in the treatment of BPH? The presence of zinc, lignans and phytosterols in these tiny little seeds has been effective in reducing the risk associated with BPH.

Various research analysis reports on the phytosterol components in Pumpkin seeds, including sitostanol, beta-sitosterol, avenasterol, campestanol, stigmasterol and campesterol are responsible for its efficacy in the diagnosis of BPH.

Ayurveda calls Pumpkin seed as Basti Shoda, which means a remedy for cleansing the bladder and the adjacent parts of the body.

Pumpkin seeds and its oil were also prescribed in Ayurvedic medicine for increasing sperm count and for treating impotence and premature ejaculation, for which it is known as ‘Virya Vardhak’, which enhances intense power and vitality.

2. Combats against cancer, diabetes and high cholesterol levels:

Pumpkin seeds have antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties that can help in preventing the growth and spread of cancerous cells and support the recovery of patients during their treatment tenure and healthy cardiovascular system.

The presence of phytosterol compounds in Pumpkin seeds has been associated with controlling the level of cholesterol in the system. Phytosterols work by restraining the absorption of cholesterol in the small intestine and enhance the level of HDL cholesterol.

A 2011 study on ‘The effect of pumpkin (Cucurbita pepo L) seeds and L-arginine supplementation on serum lipid concentrations in atherogenic rats’ published in the African Journal of Traditional, Complementary and Alternative Medicines, states that about 37 days of regular supplementation of Pumpkin seeds on rats that are on atherogenic diet-induced atherosclerosis showed a 78 % fall in LDL (bad) cholesterol and 47% reduction in total levels of cholesterol and a promising increase in defensive HDL cholesterol (imperative for healthy heart functions).

A 2013 study on ‘Effects of phytoestrogen extracts isolated from pumpkin seeds on estradiol production and ER/PR expression in breast cancer and trophoblast tumor cells’ by the Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, University of Rostock, Germany states “Phytoestrogens have a controversial effect on hormone-dependent tumors” and it concludes by reporting that the presence of lignans in Pumpkin seed are effective in the treatment and prevention of breast cancer.

Numerous researches suggest that the presence of omega-3 fatty acids like α-linolenic acid in Pumpkin seed oil might aid in reducing inflammation and the occurrences of chronic health problems like high blood pressure, cancer and heart diseases, quotes the University of Maryland Medical Center.

Pumpkin seeds are alkalizing in nature to the body’s natural pH levels, where most of the snack foods might cause acidity, pain and even cancer. Pumpkin seed oil is also effective in reducing the oxidative stress responsible for cancer, diabetes and other metabolic disorders.

A research study led by Tao Xia in the East China Normal University have concluded that certain compounds in Pumpkin extracts are known to encourage regeneration of damaged pancreatic cells, thus enhancing the levels of insulin in blood.

3. Assists in diagnosing osteoporosis, bone disorders and low immunity:

The most promising attribute that makes Pumpkin seed oil as an armament against osteoporosis is its high zinc, phosphorous and magnesium content, where insufficient consumption of zinc, magnesium and certain other minerals are often associated with weak bones and increased rate of osteoporosis.

Zinc plays a vital role in cellular growth, immune power, sensory functions and sleep patterns. Deficiency of zinc is characterized by acne, frequent cold and cough, depression, fatigue, poor cognitive abilities and more.

Low levels of blood of the trace mineral and osteoporosis diagnosed at the spinal and hip area were reported due to the deficient levels of zinc in the diet, states a study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition with 400 men in the sample group.

4. Alleviates stress, depression and sleeping difficulties:

Pumpkin seed oil contains numerous amino acids like tryptophan, which gets transformed to niacin and serotonin (neuro-transmitter in the brain for stirring your mood). These compounds have been proved universally for its ability to assuage stress levels, social anxiety turmoil, and depression along with fostering a tranquilizing sleep.

Sleep is nature’s medicine for repairing, healing and renovating the physical, emotional and spiritual throbbing and damages. Stress, depression, anxiety and fatigue often curtail natural sleep patterns that agonize your nights and ruin your days throughout.

By promoting a peaceful sleep at night, Pumpkin seed oil pacifies the mind, body and the soul. Stress, anxiety and depression are often the factors behind excessive loss of hair. With its potent to alleviate stress, depression and fatigue, Pumpkin seed oil can control stress related hair loss conditions like Alopecia Areata, Trichotillomania, and Telogen Effluvium.

Pumpkin seed oil promotes hair growth by augmenting the follicular strength, and natural sheen says Marnie Nussbaum, celebrated Cosmetic dermatologist. She also states that Pumpkin Seed oil curtails 5-alpha reductase enzyme. This enzyme has been proven to delay and impede the growth of hair.

Pumpkin seeds are packed with rich nutrients including vitamins A and B, zinc, protein, iron and omega-6 fatty acids that are extremely beneficial for the growth of healthy hair, nourishment of dry and scaly scalp conditions.

5. Helps mitigate kidney disorders and inflammatory conditions:

Pumpkin seeds are an excellent source of antioxidants and essential fatty acids that are proved in treating inflammatory problems by reducing inflammation, particularly in joints without any negative effects (According to a study published in the Journal of Pharmacology Research). It is mainly for this reason; Pumpkin seed oil is recommended for treating arthritis.

Frequent urination and the excess pressure to urinate recurrently are among the few symptoms of an overactive bladder. Pumpkin seeds are an excellent remedy for supporting the overall health of the excretory system and treats overactive bladder and other urinary problems effectively (With reference to the Journal of Traditional and Complementary medicine – 2014 study).

BPH (Benign prostatic hyperplasia) might also pave way for stones or calculi in the bladder and frequent infections in the urinary tract.

The presence of B vitamins, minerals, amino acids and proteins in Pumpkin seeds are also proved to maintain regular functions of the kidneys, bladder and urinary tracts by restraining surplus levels of DHEA (dihydro epi-androstenedione).

Best ways to use Pumpkin Seed oil:

The best possible ways to use Pumpkin seed oil for enhancing your health condition is to use it in an enriching massage blend with your favorite essential oils like Peppermint oil, Mace oil, Lavender oil, Patchouli oil, Ashwagandha oil, Orange oil and more, as the great news is………….. Pumpkin seed oil blends well with all the oils.

Other health benefits:

Ayurveda suggests the use of Pumpkin seeds and its oil for balancing excess vata and pitta doshas, especially during the fall season and discarding toxic remains in the system. Pumpkin seeds in general are known to strengthen the functions of the lungs and intestines.

The potent to relieve excess sogginess in the body, makes Pumpkin seeds a friendly all time snack for supporting human health in general. It is also used in eliminating parasites and tapeworms.

Disclaimer:

This article is meant only for the purpose of information and is not indented for the treatment of any health conditions or as a replacement for any prescribed medicines or the advice of a medical expert. We, at Essential Depot are not healthcare professionals and this information is shared only with the view of cascading the traditional wisdom of Ayurvedic healing.

Essential oils are prescribed only for topical use. This is due to the fact that 100 percent pure and organic oils are highly concentrated liquids and may cause allergic reactions when used internally.

Always speak with your Ayurvedic practitioner or healthcare expert before choosing the appropriate essential oils for your unique individual constitution and state of health. Extra care should be taken in using essential oils if it is for children, elderly populace, nursing and pregnant women.

Thought for the day:

I love the scents of winter! For me, it’s all about the feeling you get when you smell pumpkin spice, cinnamon, nutmeg, gingerbread and spruce.

– Taylor Swift

Suggested Reading:

  1. Dr. Katz’s Guide to Prostate Health: From Conventional to Holistic Therapies by Aaron E. Katz
  2. Pumpkin, a Super Food for All 12 Months of the Year by DeeDee Stovel
  3. Pumpkin Seed Flour and its Micro-nutrient levels: Production of Pumpkin Seed Flour and Evaluation of its Potential to Enhance Vitamin A and Iron Levels of Maize Flour by Twinamasiko Andrew
  4. How Does A Pumpkin Grow?: Discover the secrets about how pumpkins grow! Be inspired to plant a seed and watch the beauty unfold in your own backyard. (Country Garden Book 2) by Renae Smith
  5. Pumpkin Seeds :Healthy and Easy Homemade for Your Best Friend by Heviz’s

Reference Links:

  1. Pumpkin seed oil by Wikipedia
  2. What’s new and beneficial about Pumpkin seeds? by The World’s Healthiest Foods
  3. Effects of phytoestrogen extracts isolated from pumpkin seeds on estradiol production and ER/PR expression in breast cancer and trophoblast tumor cells’ by the Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, University of Rostock, Germany, published in Nutrition and Cancer Journal and PubMed
  4. The True Potency of the Pumpkin Seed by Life Extension Magazine
  5. Amazing health benefits of Pumpkin Seeds by Dr. Mercola