Ajowan, also commonly called Bishop’s weed, is an Indian spice commonly used for digestive issues. Topically, it has been used to treat psoriasis and hypopigmentation, although it can be phototoxic topically due to its furocoumarin constituents. It's high amount of phenolic constituents give it antimicrobial strength.
Ajowan is used as a spice throughout India and the Middle East. It has been used for centuries as a folk remedy for nasal congestion and to combat indigestion!
In human studies, ajowan has demonstrated analgesic and oral antibacterial activity, and has reduced symptoms related to cardiac angina, and also showed improved weight loss; more research is warranted. In folk remedy, ajowan has long been used as a digestive aid, and to reduce respiratory infections. In vitro studies have deomonstrated antimicrobial, antifungal, antibacterial, antioxidant, and insecticidal actions. According to studies, it may also help with anxiety, and be an immunity booster. Again, more research is needed. Click the button below for a detailed review of research.
Latin Name: Trachyspermum ammi
Grown mainly in India, and a part of Ayurvedic medicine, the plant looks similar to wild parsley and the flower looks like wild carrot, while the seed-like fruits look similar to caraway or cumin.
Also called carom seeds, ajowan seeds are often used in Southern India cooking. For internal use, choose the whole herb seed over the essential oil. Make an oil infusion, or use a small amount of the seed in cooking recipes.
Hydrodistillation from the seed makes an essential oil with a high amount of thymol and has the strong smell of thyme.