Benefits And Nutrition Of Dill (Anethum Graveolens) For Health
Dill (Anethum Graveolens)
Dill (Anethum Graveolens) is known as other name: American Dill, Aneth, Aneth Odorant, Anethi Fructus, Anethi Herba, Anethum, Common Dill, Anethum graveolens, Anethum sowa, Dill Herb, Dill Oil, Dill Weed, Danish Dill, Dillweed, Dillweed, Dilly, European Dill, Garden Dill, Eneldo, European Dill, Faux Anis, Fenouil Bâtard, Fenouil Puant, Huile d’Aneth, Indian Dill,...
Dill is a plant belonging to the celery family (Apiaceae) that can grow up to 40–60 cm in height. It has slender stems and alternate and finely divided, softly delicate leaves around 10–20 cm long. Leaf divisions are 1–2 mm broad, slightly broader than the similar leaves of fennel, which are thread like, but harder in texture. The flowers are white to yellow. The seeds are 4–5 mm long and 1 mm thick, and straight to slightly curved with a longitudinally ridged surface. Dill is in leaf from May to November, in flower from April to July, and the seeds ripen from July to August.
|Dill (Anethum Graveolens) Flower Picture|
Dill can be a perennial or annual herb, depending on where it is cultivated in the world. The dill has been traditionally associated with superstitious beliefs in Europe, and hanging a bunch of dill herbs over the door was supposed to protect one against witches and sorcery in the olden days. While the herb is no longer associated with such superstitious beliefs these days, it is still used to a great degree in the manufacture of herbal medications and in culinary dishes in many cuisines around the world.
These days, the main use of the dill herb is in the role of a culinary herb in many European cuisines. The sweetly pungent and sharp tasting herb is used as a seasoning in the preparation of many dishes, the fresh dill leaves imbue a wonderful flavor to green salads and to fish dishes. Dill pickle which is a German preserve now familiar to the American palate is also eaten in many homes. The dill seeds are also added while preparing dill pickles and it has a characteristic flavor. All kinds of vegetables and meat stews, various sauces, potato dishes, and some breads are flavored using dill seeds. Dill leaves are often dried and used as a seasoning in different dishes around the year. Dried dill leaves are often packaged and sold by commercial herb dealers as dill weed - this product can be found in most grocery stores. Dill gives much more flavor when it is used fresh.
Nutrition Of Dill (Anethum Graveolens) For Health
The health benefits of dill are derived from its organic compounds, vitamins, and minerals. These include powerful monoterpenes like limonene, carvone, and anethofuran, as well as flavonoids like vicenin and kaempferol. As for vitamins and minerals, dill has a significant amount of vitamin A and vitamin C, as well as trace amounts of folate, iron, and manganese.
Dill leaves (sprigs) and seeds contain many essential volatile oils such as d-carvone, dillapiol, DHC, eugenol, limonene, terpinene and myristicin.
Dill is also rich in many vital vitamins, including folic acid, riboflavin, niacin, ß-carotene, that is essential for optimum metabolism inside the human body.
Dill weed is a good source of minerals like copper, potassium, calcium, manganese, and magnesium.
|Dill (Anethum Graveolens) Picture|
Benefits Of Dill (Anethum Graveolens) For Health
Traditionally, herbal remedies prepared from dill were used in treating disorders affecting the stomach, to gain relief from excessive abdominal gas and to calm down digestive disorders - the dill remedy was highly valued in these roles and some herbalists still prescribe the dill for treating such problems. The essential oil extracted from dill is used as a remedy to relief painful intestinal spasms and muscular cramps and as an aid to alleviate colic in children. Dill seeds are often chewed as a means of alleviating bad breath. The herb is mildly diuretic and is considered a useful addition to other herbal remedies meant for the treatment of chronic cough as well as the common cold, and flu. Dill can also be used along with anti-spasmodic herbs like crampbark, used for menstrual pain, similar to the way the caraway herb is utilized. Lactation is increased by dill and all nursing mothers can help avoid the chances of colic in suckling babies by regular use of the dill remedy.
Dill itself is an appetizer and therefore extensively used in culinary applications. The essential oils present in dill are stimulating and they activate the secretion of bile and digestive juices. These oils also stimulate peristaltic motion of the intestine, easing the passage of bowel movements and relieving constipation.
The essential oils found in herbs have peculiar and powerful properties. They are simultaneously stimulating, sedative, and hypnotic, that is, they stimulate as well as pacify. The essential oils in dill are no exception. The flavonoids and vitamin-B complex present in its essential oils, since they are stimulating in nature, activate the secretion of certain enzymes and hormones which have calming and hypnotic effects, thereby helping people get a good night’s sleep.
The calcium content of dill means that it is an important element in protecting you from bone loss and the loss of bone mineral density. Osteoporosis affects millions of people each year, and calcium, along with other essential minerals, are a key component in the proper growth and development of bones, and the repair of injured bones as well.
Dill has long been associated with diabetes and the management of insulin levels. Despite the fact that research is somewhat limited in this area, particularly on human subjects, studies have indicated that they can help reduce the fluctuations of serum lipids and insulin levels in corticosteroid-induced diabetes.
Dill has been known to stimulate the lining of the esophagus and assist with removal of acid that normally causes the burning associated with heartburn. It does not actually rid the tube of the stomach acid that comes up but rather invigorates the muscles to work a bit harder to ingest the agitating acid back into the stomach.
Dill has long been associate with antimicrobial activity, and it has been shown to prevent a number of microbial infections throughout the body, both those in various organs and those potential infections that land in wounds or small cuts on the skin.
Hiccups occur for various reasons, but primarily, they occur due to trapped gas and repeated upward movement of gases through the food pipe. The second cause is due to certain allergies, hypersensitivity, hyperactivity and nervous malfunctioning. Dill can actually help in all of these situations. As a carminative, dill helps the expulsion of gases and also reduces gas formation while as a sedative, dill helps to calm down hiccups due to allergies, hyperactivity, or nervous disorders.
Stomach Ailments and Diarrhea
Dill is well known for containing an immense amount of dietary fiber and certain flavonoids that have bactericidal tendencies. Combine this with Dill also being a key source of minerals, such as magnesium, and you have an herb that can naturally assist you with the pain and discomfort that comes with stomach ailments and diarrhea. They can help cure diarrhea by inhibiting microbial infections that try to attack the body.
Dysentery is primarily caused due to fungal infections. For this condition as well, dill can help, since its essential oils are disinfectant in nature and help to inhibit fungal infections effectively.
Dill has long been known as an anti-inflammatory herb, meaning that it helps to reduce the inflammation and the associated pain of diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis, gout, and arthritis. Dill has been used since ancient times for precisely this reason.
The flavonoids in the essential oil of dill are stimulating and Emenagogic in nature, which means that they stimulate the secretion of certain hormones that help maintain proper menstrual cycles in women.
|Dill (Anethum Graveolens) Picture|
Everyone has had symptoms of the common cold, such as a runny nose or a productive cough. Dill plays a strong part in the herbal community as being a supplement added to most cold remedies to assist in reducing the amount of time a cold lingers within the body.
Components found within the structure of the dill herb have been known to assist with being a fast cure for bad breath. Dill seeds can be chewed in similar fashion to gum and breath mints and provide a health alternative for fresh clean breath that will not play a part in destroying the integrity of your teeth and their antioxidants minimize the damage caused to gums and teeth by free radicals..
Let’s turn our attention to these monoterpense we’ve been talking about. Monoterpenes are chemopreventive, and since they are stimulating by nature, they activate the secretion of an enzyme called glutathione-S-transferase (the radical glutathione is an effective antioxidant) which is very effective in neutralizing carcinogens. It is particularly effective at neutralizing Cyano- and Benzo- derivatives and free radicals, thereby protecting the body from cancer. The other antioxidants in the essential oils of dill also contribute to this cancer protection that people enjoy from adding dill to their diet.
Other Benefits of Dill (Anethum Graveolens)
Dill is a relaxant, increases strength, and increases urination to help in the removal of toxins, excess salts, and water from the body. Furthermore, it is a carminative (helps remove excess gas), antispasmodic (prevents cramps), and an antiflatulent substance. It stimulates lactation (galactagogue) and endocrinal secretions, enhances the libido due to the presence of Arginine and last but not the least, it ensures bone and dental health since it is a good source of calcium.
Side Effects and Possible Interactions of Dill (Anethum Graveolens)
Side effects from the consumption of dill are very rare. If the herb is consumed in high levels, there is a possibility that the skin can become extra sensitive to light and a rash may occur. This might put you at greater risk for sunburns and skin cancer. If this happens during the consumption of dill or herbal supplements containing dill, consult your herbal supplement provider or your physician to determine a different approach towards including dill in your overall diet.
Dill’s unsafe to use dill in medicinal amounts if you are pregnant. Dill seed can start menstruation and that might lead to a miscarriage.