Black Seed Oil Health Benefits Explained
The future of fitness, weight loss, and health may lie in an ancient medicinal plant that was once hidden in King Tut's tomb because of its treasured health properties: the Nigella sativa plant, also known as black seed. Today, forward-thinking supplement products — such as MTS Nutrition's best-selling Black Seed Oil supplement — utilize extracted antioxidant-rich oils from Nigella sativa to give athletes and wellness enthusiasts an upper edge.
But what does the research actually say about black seed oil's purported benefits for weight loss, exercise recovery, disease prevention, and even brain health?
Black Seed Oil Has a Long History in Traditional Medicine
Some of the earliest references to the health usage of black seed trace back to the age of Egypt's pharaohs. Research out of Ball State University reports that it was long used "to fight illness and...boost health and wellbeing of sickly individuals in the old civilizations."
Supplements are made by removing the small, black seeds from the green pods of the Nigella sativa plant, which grows throughout Northern Africa, the Middle East, and Southwest Asia. It's the oil extracted from these seeds that offer up so many of the plant's therapeutic benefits.
A study published in the Asian Pacific Journal of Tropical Biomedicine reports that people have used black seed oil for thousands of years to treat cancer, diabetes, cardiovascular disease, digestive problems, and inflammation. "Due to its miraculous power of healing, N. sativa has got a place among the top-ranked evidence-based herbal medicines," notes the study's researchers.
Nutritional Properties of Black Seed Oil
Black seed oil is rich in an array of healthy substances, including:
- Essential fatty palmitic acid
- Essential stearic fatty acid
- Essential oleic fatty acid
- Essential linoleic fatty acid
- Thymoquinone, an anti-inflammatory with strong antioxidant properties
The quality of these nutrients can vary depending on where the manufacturer sourced its black seeds and how the oil was processed. To maintain the best nutritional quality, look for a cold-pressed black oil supplement. Studies show that compared to heat-based processing, cold-pressing minimizes the degradation of an oil's antioxidants and fats.
Black Seed Oil Health Benefits
"N. sativa has been extensively studied for its biological activities and therapeutic potential and shown to possess a wide spectrum of activities," explains the Asian Pacific Journal of Tropical Biomedicine. Several specific benefits will catch the eye of any weekend warrior, fitness enthusiast, or athlete.
1. Black Seed Oil May Help You to Lose Weight
In a randomized controlled trial published in the Food & Function science journal, two groups of people were placed on identical diets. Then, they were given either a placebo pill or three grams of black seed oil a day. Not only did those taking black seed oil lose significantly more weight than those who took the placebo, but the dieters taking a black seed oil supplement also saw a significant drop in their cholesterol levels.
2. Black Seed Oil May Improve Your Blood Sugar Numbers
High blood sugar and other prediabetic symptoms affect one in three Americans. Recent research from Bloomberg School’s Department of Epidemiology has found that Americans' blood sugar control has trended alarming downwards over the past decade.
An array of studies suggest that black seed oil may:
- Reduce fasting blood sugar numbers
- Significantly reduce hemoglobin A1c (HbA1c) levels (a way of measuring average blood sugar) in less than three weeks
3. Black Seed Oil's Thymoquinone May Reduce Inflammation
Black seed oil is very rich in thymoquinone, a type of antioxidant with well-studied anti-inflammatory effects. Researchers say this suggests that black seed oil may improve numerous inflammatory-related health concerns and diseases.
Examples that are especially beneficial to athletes and fitness enthusiasts include:
- Joint pain
- Difficulty breathing due to inflamed airways (e.g., asthma and allergies)
- Delayed onset muscle soreness (DOMS), fatigue, and tenderness due to exercise
"It is important to realize that resistance training can also be a source of inflammation," warns the American Council on Exercise. "Inflammation increases blood supply to the damaged area, leading to the release of substances secreted by the immune system. [...] Among these substances are free radicals. While free radicals are essential for muscle functioning and muscle growth, excess free radicals can impair muscle contraction and contribute to weakness, fatigue and dysfunction."
Taking an anti-inflammatory nutritional supplement, such as black seed oil, may help improve your muscle strength and endurance over time by reducing the activity of free radicals and inflammation.
4. Black Seed Oil May Improve Your Blood Pressure
According to the U.S. CDC, half of all adults have high blood pressure. The U.S. National Library of Medicine's review of black seed research concludes that black seed supplements help lower blood pressure. For example, participants in one study took 1/2 teaspoon of black seed oil two times a day. After two months, their blood pressure levels had dropped significantly.
5. Black Seed Oil May Boost Your Mental Power and Cognition
Some small studies, such as research published in the Journal of Ethnopharmacology, have found that black seed supplements may significantly boost your brain health and cognition, with measurable improvements in factors like memory and focus. Besides bringing obvious cognitive benefits, improved attention and focus may help you dial in your workouts and get the most out of each gym session.
How to Use Black Seed Oil For Your General Health and Fitness
Tiger Fitness is proud to offer premium quality, cold-pressed black seed oil supplements like Black Seed Oil from MTS Nutrition. MTS' supplement is made with maximum potency N. sativa oil, conveniently dosed in 500mg softgels, so you don't have to worry about the mess of pouring and measuring oil.
If you want to upgrade your supplement routine with black seed oil, remember these tips:
- Talk to your doctor before trying any new supplements. Just because it's all-natural doesn't mean it won't interact with other medicines, health conditions, or supplements you're already taking. As you can see in the research above, black seed oil has a wide array of health effects.
- Take your black seed oil with a meal, especially if your goals include improvements in weight loss, blood sugar, blood pressure, or cholesterol.
- Consider higher doses of two to three grams of black seed oil daily. This is the approximate dosage used in most research studies.
Browse Tiger Fitness' catalog of black seed oil supplements today!