CARAWAY

OTHER NAME(S):

Alcaravea, Anis Canadien, Anis des Prés, Anis des Vosges, Apium carvi, Carraway, Carum carvi, Carum velenovskyi, Carvi, Carvi Commun, Carvi Fructus, Cumin des Montagnes, Cumin des Prés, Faux Anis, Haravi, Jeera, Jira, Kala Jira, Karwiya, Krishan Jeeraka, Krishnajiraka, Kummel, Kummich, Roman Cumin, Semen Cumini Pratensis, Semences de Carvi, Shahijra, Shiajira, Wiesen-Feldkummel, Wild Cumin.<br/><br/>

Overview

Overview Information

Caraway is a plant. People use the oil, fruit, and seeds as medicine.

Some people take caraway by mouth for digestive problems including heartburn, bloating, gas, loss of appetite, and mild spasms of the stomach and intestines. Caraway oil is also taken by mouth to help people cough up phlegm, improve control of urination, kill bacteria in the body, and relieve constipation.

Some women take caraway oil by mouth to help start menstruation and relieve menstrual cramps. Some nursing mothers use it to increase the flow of breast milk.

Caraway is used in mouthwashes and may applied to the skin to improve local blood flow or help improve symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome (IBS).

In foods, caraway is used as a cooking spice.

In manufacturing, caraway oil is used to flavor certain medications. It is also commonly used as a fragrance in toothpaste, soap, and cosmetics.

How does it work?

Caraway oil might improve digestion and relieve spasms in the stomach and intestines. It may also cause weight loss.
Uses

Uses & Effectiveness?

Possibly Effective for

  • Heartburn. Taking a specific product containing caraway oil and peppermint oil (Enteroplant by Dr Willmar Schwabe Pharmaceuticals) by mouth seems to reduce feelings of fullness and stomach spasms. Another specific combination product containing caraway (Iberogast by Steigerwald Arzneimittelwerk GmbH) also seems to improve symptoms of heartburn, including severity of acid reflux, stomach pain, cramping, nausea, and vomiting. The combination includes caraway, peppermint leaf, clown's mustard plant, German chamomile, licorice, milk thistle, angelica, celandine, and lemon balm. Another similar combination product containing caraway, peppermint leaf, clown's mustard, German chamomile, licorice, and lemon balm (STW 5-II by Steigerwald Arzneimittelwerk GmbH) also seems to help.

Insufficient Evidence for

  • Asthma. Early research shows that drinking a tea containing caraway, saffron, anise, black seed, cardamom, chamomile, fennel, and licorice may reduce asthma symptoms such as sleep discomfort and coughing.
  • Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). Early research shows that applying caraway oil to the abdomen, covering it with a moist towel and dry towel, and then placing a heating pad on top improves symptoms of IBS more so than just applying olive oil with no heat. But it doesn' t seem to work better than applying olive oil along with heat.
  • Obesity. Early research in overweight and obese females shows that taking caraway seed extract for 3 months may slightly decreases body weight, body mass index, percent body fat, and waist circumference. But these improvements might not be very meaningful. Caraway seed extract doesn' t seem to improve blood pressure or cholesterol levels.
  • Bloating.
  • Constipation.
  • Gas.
  • Increasing milk flow in nursing mothers.
  • Infection.
  • Menstrual cramps.
  • Poor appetite.
  • Poor blood flow.
  • Spasms of stomach and intestines.
  • Starting menstruation.
  • Other conditions.
More evidence is needed to rate the effectiveness of caraway for these uses.

Side Effects

Side Effects & Safety

Caraway is LIKELY SAFE for most people when taken by mouth in food amounts. Caraway is POSSIBLY SAFE for most people when taken by mouth in medicinal amounts for up to 3 months or when applied to the skin for up to 3 weeks.

Caraway oil can cause belching, heartburn, and nausea when used with peppermint oil. It can cause skin rashes and itching in sensitive people when applied to the skin.

Special Precautions & Warnings:

Pregnancy and breast-feeding: It is POSSIBLY UNSAFE to take caraway in medicinal amounts during pregnancy. Caraway oil has been used to start menstruation, and this might cause a miscarriage. Don' t use it. Not enough is known about the safety of using caraway during breast-feeding. Stay on the safe side and avoid use.

Diabetes: There is a concern that caraway might lower blood sugar. If you have diabetes and use caraway, watch your blood sugar carefully. The dose of the medications you use for diabetes might need to be adjusted.

Too much iron in the body (hemochromatosis): Caraway extract might increase the absorption of iron. Overuse of caraway extract with iron supplements or iron-containing food might increase iron levels in the body. This may be a problem for people who already have too much iron in the body.

Surgery: Caraway might lower blood sugar levels. There is a concern that it might interfere with blood sugar control during and after surgery. Stop using caraway at least 2 weeks before a scheduled surgery.

Interactions

Interactions?

Moderate Interaction

Be cautious with this combination

!
  • Medications for diabetes (Antidiabetes drugs) interacts with CARAWAY

    Caraway might decrease blood sugar. Diabetes medications are also used to lower blood sugar. Taking caraway along with diabetes medications might cause your blood sugar to go too low. Monitor your blood sugar closely. The dose of your diabetes medication might need to be changed.<br /> Some medications used for diabetes include glimepiride (Amaryl), glyburide (DiaBeta, Glynase PresTab, Micronase), insulin, pioglitazone (Actos), rosiglitazone (Avandia), chlorpropamide (Diabinese), glipizide (Glucotrol), tolbutamide (Orinase), and others.<br /> Before taking caraway, talk with your healthcare professional if you take any medications.

Dosing

Dosing

The following doses have been studied in scientific research:

ADULTS
BY MOUTH:

  • For heartburn: A specific product containing 90 mg of peppermint oil and 50 mg of caraway oil (Enteroplant by Dr Willmar Schwabe Pharmaceuticals), taken two or three times daily for up to 4 weeks has been used. A specific combination product containing caraway and several other herbs (Iberogast by Steigerwald Arzneimittelwerk GmbH) has also been used in a dose of 1 mL three times daily. A similar herbal preparation containing extracts from caraway, clown's mustard, German chamomile flower, peppermint leaves, licorice root, and lemon balm (STW 5-II by Steigerwald Arzneimittelwerk GmbH) has been used in a dose of 1 mL three times daily for up to 8 weeks.

View References

REFERENCES:

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More Resources for CARAWAY

CONDITIONS OF USE AND IMPORTANT INFORMATION: This information is meant to supplement, not replace advice from your doctor or healthcare provider and is not meant to cover all possible uses, precautions, interactions or adverse effects. This information may not fit your specific health circumstances. Never delay or disregard seeking professional medical advice from your doctor or other qualified health care provider because of something you have read on WebMD. You should always speak with your doctor or health care professional before you start, stop, or change any prescribed part of your health care plan or treatment and to determine what course of therapy is right for you.

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