Small but powerful, black sesame seeds are used in Chinese herbal medicine for many health-promoting and anti-aging benefits.
Their anti-aging powers include the delaying of premature graying of hair, poor memory and hearing loss, probably thanks to the high content of vitamins B and iron, whose deficiency can lead to those symptoms.
Black sesame seeds are also beneficial for healthier skin and bones due to the abundancy of calcium, zinc and vitamin E and for heart health because of their content of magnesium that reduces blood pressure and of substances that lower cholesterol levels (sesamin and sesamolin).
There are more benefits….from liver protection to protection against the development of various cancers, like colon cancer, relief for constipation and indigestion thanks to their fibers and oil content.
Some sources mention the important of these seeds as lactation aid and, in fact, the Chinese have been using it as a lactating aid for their nursing mothers.
How to use black sesame seeds
The nutrient-rich seeds can be added to cereals, rice, noodles, juice or used in cooking as sesame oil. Grounding the seeds or soaking them overnight can help make them more digestible and also aids in the absorption of calcium and other minerals, while reducing the effects of the oxalic acid found in the seeds. For people with tendency for loose bowels or a history of kidney stones, the use of these seeds needs to be more conservative.
Used in the form of oil in cosmetics and beauty products it nourishes the skin and the scalp and also boosts melanin production, which is responsible for creating hair pigments. Sesame oil is also recommended for the massage of babies to let them sleep better or to protect their delicate skin against rashes.