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Indian households tend to use mustard seeds or oil in dishes. It adds a certain flavour, which is quite appetizing. Therefore, mustard can be used in a variety of ways from spicing up a certain curry to the oil being used for cooking. This apart, when mustard seeds are crushed, the powder can be used to garnish a dish or made into a dip accompanied by evening snacks. The whole seed is known to be used as tadka.
Mustard oil, apart from making your food taste great, has a number of health benefits which should be explored.
Aids weight loss
Mustard oil contains B-complex vitamins, which include folates, thiamine, riboflavin, among others. These components have beneficial properties and together can help increase your metabolism. (Read: Sample weight loss diet plan by an expert dietician)
Slows the ageing process
Mustard oil is rich in flavonoid and caretonoid antioxidants and vitamins A, C & K. Therefore, these components together can help slow down the ageing process.
A teaspoon of mustard oil mixed with milk can help relieve constipation. It contains mucilage, a thick substance, which aids in the process. Mustard oil also helps in producing saliva, allowing you to better digest your food. (Read: Top 10 home remedies for constipation (and tips on how to use them))
Prevents skin infections
Mustard oil contains sulphur which help prevents skin infections. Sulphur is beneficial as it has anti-fungal and anti-bacterial properties that combat skin ailments effectively.
Since mustard is rich in a number of minerals like iron, manganese and copper, among others, it helps the body fight diseases. This apart, mustard oil should be used in moderation. While it does have certain health benefits, if used in large doses, it can be quite harmful too. Therefore, consult your doctor before actually taking large doses of it on a daily basis. (Read: 5 amazing tips to improve your imminity)
Provides relief from muscle and arthritic pain
Selenium and magnesium present in mustard oil has certain anti-inflammatory properties. Therefore, when you apply the oil to your body, it heats the body and relieves the muscles from pain. (Read: Exercise only 3 hours a week to reduce arthritis pain)
It should be noted that mustard oil contains a good amount of vitamin B3. This vitamin helps lower cholesterol levels, while also protecting the arteries from plaque build-up. It also has the ability to regulate blood flow and protect your body from hypertension.
Mustard oil has always been considered the go-to remedy to help stimulate hair growth. This is because it contains minerals and vitamins which aid in the process. When mustard seeds are crushed to make oil, beta carotene gets converted to Vitamin A, making it suitable for hair growth.
Can control asthma
Mustard oil is rich in magnesium and selenium, which have high anti-inflammatory properties. Therefore, it can be used to control asthma, as well as cold and congestion. Mustard oil can be used to massage a new born baby to prevent congestion especially during winter. (Read: 4 tips to prevent asthma attacks during the winter)
Mustard oil is high in phytonutrients, thereby preventing gastrointestinal cancer. In fact, research has proven that these properties can slow down the growth of cancer cells to prevent it from spreading.
How to use mustard oil?
To ease pain
You can dip a muslin cloth in mustard oil and let it soak in your bath water for a few minutes. You can soak your feet in it or have a relaxing bath to get instant relief. Applying the oil to the area affected by the pain directly also helps.
To relive stress
You can heat mustard oil and massage your body with it. It helps in relieving stress and tension. (Read: 20 experts tips to beat stress)
To prevent dandruff and ensure hair growth
Once you apply mustard oil to your hair, place a plastic bag or warm towel over your hair to ensure better absorption. Leave it on for around 20-30 minutes and then give your hair a good wash. Ensure that the shampoo you use is good because the oil can tend to stick, owing to its thick consistency.
To relieve constipation
A small teaspoon of mustard oil at least once a day will help clean your bowels, thereby preventing constipation.
Photo source: Getty images
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