Black cumin oil is made from the seeds of the Nigella sativa plant and is a rich source of essential fatty acids (EFAs). It is used as a nutritional supplement and has powerful anti-inflammatory, anti-bacterial and anti-viral properties. In particular, black cumin oil can be used to alleviate symptoms of arthritis, eczema, acne, and psoriasis. Researchers believe the active ingredient in black cumin oil to be thymoquinone, a phytochemical that has a strong influence on key mediators of inflammation.
NOTE: While black cumin oil has for centuries been used as a traditional medicine, new research is not only confirming its benefits, but also highlighting potential risks. For example, one study from 2010 indicated that black cumin oil inhibits two key enzymes used to metabolise about 75% of pharmaceutical drugs. This suggests black cumin oil should not be used in conjunction with pharmaceutical drugs without consent from a health care professional.