Monday, August 1, 2011

Black Pepper Therapy

Black pepper, yes, the commonly used table spice contains a treasure trove of chemical constituents. These constituents give the spice a number of medicinal and non medicinal properties. Some of the constituents are a resin called bitter chavicine, volatile oils (3% oil per 100g) and alkaloids such as piperidine, piperine (gives the black pepper a spicy or hot taste), piperettine plus several minor alkaloids.
The resin and oils extracts are widely used for medicinal purposes:
  • Stimulant
  • Laxative
  • Aids digestion
  • Aids in reducing flatulence
  • Aids nausea  
  • Antispasmodic  (reduce muscular contractions)  
  • Analgesic (relieve pain)
  • Rubefacient (relieves inflammation and congestion)
  • Diaphoretic (increases perspiration/sweat production)
Research has shown that black pepper has an anti-bacterial effect on Gram negative organisms along with displaying strong anti-fungal properties. Black pepper poultice has been used on several parts of the body for various effects.
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Stop light bleeding (No sting effect)
Next time you cut yourself in the kitchen, reach for the black pepper. Pour a liberal amount of finely ground black pepper over the wound and apply some pressure, until the bleeding has stopped. Rinse off the pepper and bandage the area. However, you may wish to clean the wound before applying the black pepper, if you were handling meat or other raw items, before getting the cut.

Analgesic for Tooth & Gums
Brushing the teeth with fine ground black pepper mixed with fine grained sea salt and clove oil has been traditionally used in cases of tooth decay, toothache and painful gums.
This also works well for short term pain relief, if applied directly to a painful tooth.
** Can cause damage to gums if used consistently for a period extending more than 2 weeks.
Rubefacient for Flu & Cold Congestion (Black pepper can thin mucus, relieve blocked phlegm)
Take some fresh black pepper mix it with some natural honey, (the mixture should be slightly runny not stiff ).Take mixture as would cough syrup, 1-2 times daily. This may be slightly sweet and spicy depending on the type of black pepper used. Mix as much as needed, store in the refrigerator or a cool, dark place.
2012 UPDATE: I applied a little paste made out of black pepper on a bump I had on my chin, to reduce the swelling. Honestly, I had to wash off the paste soon after because of the mild stinging/burning sensation felt. To my surprise a few days later, the spot where I applied the black pepper paste had a scab and now I have a black scar on in the spot. The scar is fading but I honestly did not expect this. So I would say be careful when using black pepper on sensitive skin. 

Sources: (2010). Piper nigrum Medicinal Uses. Retrieved from: (2008). Marica (Piper nigrum). Retrieved from: (2010). Black Pepper,Black Pepper Seed,Piper nigrum,Piper:the Kind of spices,one of the oldest and the most popular spice in the world. Retrieved from: 

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