Medicinal Benefits of Asafoetida, An Edible Gum-Resin

Indian cuisine relies on a vast battery of spices – and hing plays an integral part. Native to Afghanistan and Iraq, #Asafoetida (Ferula asafoetida/Hing) is the dried sap obtained from the roots of Ferula plants and is a flavouring agent for food.

#Hing is acquired in molten form and further processed into a consumable product. Several flavours of hing are available in the market and also mixed with flour to make edible gum. The powder or lumps that you get in the market is the final stage of the product. Flavour-wise of hing is similar to garlic & onion.

The most common use of asafoetida is it helps in indigestion. So, the product is added to food. Many studies claimed that enhancing digestive enzymes helps in boosting digestion. Recently, I came to know that spice is used in reducing gas.

Usually, Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) is detected by abdominal pain, diarrhoea, bloating, constipation, or gas. Hing has potential effects and helps in reducing symptoms with IBS.

Many traditional medicine systems have trusted hing to help ward off diseases. For example, during the Middle Ages, the dried gum was sometimes worn around the neck to help ward off infection and disease. In Saudi Arabia, dried gum is used medicinally for whooping cough, asthma, and bronchitis.

Does hing have #aphrodisiac properties? In many cultures, especially in Southern America, the dried leaves of the Ferula plant are soaked in hot water and this extract is consumed by men as an aphrodisiac.

Hing is also believed to help in curing gallstones & kidney stones.

Many studies are underway to explore various medicinal benefits of this #magical plant especially in helping fight cancer, reduce the negative effects of chemotherapy, reducing spasms, improving lipid profile, maintaining blood sugar level, reducing colic in month old babies among others. At the time of writing this article, we are still awaiting detailed studies and proof for most of these but the studies show promise.

Isn’t hing a hero among resin-based medicines?

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