JIRAKA – Cuminum cyminum linn – Ayurvedic Herb

 

 

JIRAKA - Cuminum cyminum linn - Ayurvedic Herb

 

 

 

SYNONYMS AND INTERPRETATIONS

Jiraka – that which helps in digestion.
Ajaji  – its nature is to improve the appetite.
Jarana – provides good digestion.
Kana – it has many minute parts.
Peethabam – fruits are yellowish.
Ruchya – improves taste in the mouth.
Medhyam – good tonic for brain.
Dipyaka – the fruits are longish shape.
Ajajika
Dipaka
Ajamoda
Dirga jiraka
Dirgaka
Dirgakana
Gowrajaji
Gowra jiraka
Hrswanga
Jaji
Jirana
Jirna
Kanaahva
Kunchika
Maghada

 

VERNACULAR NAMES

  • Sanskrit       –       Jiraka.
  • English         –     Cuminum seeds.
  • Hindi            –     Safed jeera.
  • Kannada      –     Jirige.
  • Malayalam  –     Jirakam.
  • Telugu           –    Jilakarra.
  • Bengali          –    Jira.
  • Marathi         –    Jirein.
  • Gujarathi      –     Jirun.
  • Tamil             –     Chirakam.

 

VARIETIES

According to sushrutha                             :            shukla & Peeta

According to Dhanvantari nighantu       :           Jiraka ( Ajaji), Shukla jiraka, Krishna jiraka, Vanya jirah

According to Shodala nighantu               :          Upakunchika, Shukla jiraka, Krishna jiraka

According to Kaiyadeva nighantu           :          Shukla jiraka, Krishna jiraka, Kaali kaakaa

According to madanapala nighantu       :         Shwetha, Upakunchika, Shyaama

 

 

CHEMICAL COMPOSITION

SEED     :  Cuminin

Diacyl glycerol

Imperatorin

Isoimperatorin

Isoimpinellin

Oxypeucedanin

Apigenin

Apiin

Oxalic

Cuminaldihyde

P – cymene

 

FRUIT   :  Fatty oil

Resin

Mucilage

Protein compounds

 

 

 

PROPERTIES

RASA       :  Katu

GUNA      : Laghu, Ruksha

VIRYA      : Ushna

VIPAKA   : Katu

 

KARMA

 

Dipana

Paachana

Grahi

Vrishya

Garbhashaya shodaka

Balya

 

INDICATIONS

 

Krimi

Jirna jvara

Adhmana

Kushta

Grahani

Athisara

Gulma

Visha roga

Netra roga 

 

PHARMACOTHERPEUTICAL USES

 

The volatile oil has immune – stimulatory effect on infections.

The seeds have aphrodisiac properties.

 

THERAPEUTIC USES

 

Amla pitta  – Ghee prepared with jiraka & dhanyaka is useful.(Chakradatta)

Chardi    – Souvarchala lavana, jiraka ,sharkara & maricha are mixed with honey & given as anti – emetic.(vranda madhava)

Vishama jvara – jiraka powder should be given with jiggery. ( A.S.Chi 2/93)

 

FOLKLORE USES

 

A fine paste of cumin seeds with water applied on boils or aching body parts gives relief from pain.

Water boiled with ground jeera has to be given regularly to lactating mothers, this increases breast milk and reduces inflammation of uterus.

Roast jeera without oil till it warm, grind this to a fine powder along with rock salt and massage gums with this powder this help to prevent bleeding from gums & strengthens them.

A tea prepared by boiling and a small piece of fresh ginger help to give relief in common cold.

Patients suffering from irritable bowel syndrome can use pomegranate juice mixed with roasted and ground jeera powder this helps to reduce frequency of stools and sooths colon.

 

PART USED

  • Fruits

DOSAGE

  • Fruit powder    : 3 – 6 gm

 

FORMULATIONS

 

Jirakadi modaka

Jirakaadyarishta

Jiraka grhitha

Jiraka taila

Jirakadya churna

 

CULTIVATION

Cultivation of cumin requires a long, hot summer with 3 – 4 months with daytime temperatures around 30 c it is drought tolerant, and is mostly grown in Mediterranean climates. A hot climate is prefered, but it can be grown cooler regions if, but it can be grown cooler regions if started under glass in spring.

It is grown from seed sown in spring and needs a fertile, well drained soil. A sandy soil is best, when the seedlings have hardened, transparent carefully to a sunny aspect, planting out 15 cm apart seed regularly.

The reported life zone of cumin is 9 – 26 0 c with an annual precipitation of 0.3 – 2.7 mts and a soil ph of 4.5 – 8.30 c.

 

RESEARCH STUDIES

Alcoholic extract of seeds at 150 mg/kg showed 100% anti-fertility effect in early  pregnancy in female rats.

  • (Ind. J. Med. Res 1976, 64, 1133)

Seeds significantly decreased incidence of both bengo (a) pyrene – induced neoplasia  in swiss mice and hepatomas in wistar rats.

  • (Food chem. Toxicol. 1992, 30,953)

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