Black cumin has been used in the Orient for more than 2000 years as a spice and for medicinal purposes. In spite of its name, however, it is neither related to caraway nor to cumin, but rather tastes a little like sesame and can therefore also be used as a spice for salads, bread, vegetables and meat. Frequently, the seeds of the black cumin (nigella sativa) are also further processed to make black cumin oil, which is particularly rich in polyunsaturated fatty acids.
In particular the linoleic acid contained in black cumin oil can contribute towards maintaining normal cholesterol levels from a daily intake of 10 grams. And the biologically-active fatty acids in the black cumin oil are also considered highly valuable in ointments.