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Nigella sativa: the cousin of cannabis sativa with a powerful story to tell
REVIEWED BYDR. NITA SHARMA DAS, PHD, ND, PHDHM, B PHARM. August 22, 2018 THIS ARTICLE IS COPYRIGHTED FOR NIGELLA--SATIVA.COM ONLY. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.
Since 1940, the United States along with many other countries banned Cannabis sativa, popularly known as Marijuana due to its addictive nature.
∆9-tetrahydrocannabinol is one of the major psychoactive constituent present in Cannabis responsible drug abuse.
However, cannabinoids is one of the principal constituent of Cannabis has several therapeutic benefits to treat numerous diseases, which include anorexia, emesis, pain, inflammation, multiple sclerosis, neurodegenerative disorders (Parkinson's disease, Huntington's disease, Tourette's syndrome, Alzheimer's disease), epilepsy, glaucoma, osteoporosis, schizophrenia, cardiovascular disorders, cancer, obesity, and metabolic syndrome-related disorders, etc. 
Therefore, banning of cannabis was a huge shrinkage of therapeutic benefits in the medicinal plant Kingdome. But medicinal plant researchers got a new alternative of Cannabis sativa and i.e. Nigella sativa. Though researchers continuously working on Cannabis sativa to lessen the side effect burdens of this medicinal plant to convalesce its acceptance in therapeutic application.
Nigella sativa is considered can be considered a cousin of the Cannabis sativa, as both of them are seed-bearing plant and belongs to the same species, sativa.  It is notable Nigella sativa is already a potential medicinal herb in traditional medicine and reorganization in Holy Bible make this herbal ingredient as ' 'blessed seed'. 
While nigella sativa goes by many names depending on where in the world it's being classified–black cumin, Roman coriander, and "Kalonji" in Hindi-Urdu representing just a few of its more common designations–the benefits of nigella sativa are ubiquitous, irrespective of what people choose to call it.
Both the seeds and the oil of nigella sativa are so highly renowned in ancient folklore that they've earned designations as both "superfoods" and herbal medicines. In Islamic literature, for instance, nigella sativa is regarded as the world's preeminent healing food, the Prophet Muhammad likening it to "a cure for every disease except death."(4)
The three 'thymos' that render nigella sativa a healing food of the highest order
Hailing from the same botanical family as cannabis sativa, Nigella sativa bears many similar properties, both from a nutritive and remedial standpoint. For one, it's loaded with essential fatty acids like linoleic acid, as well as more than a dozen essential amino acids, a slew of trace minerals, numerous cholesterol-lowering phytosterols, and carotene, a type of plant pigment that functions as a nutrient precursor to vitamin A.[4, 5, 6,7]
There are also three additional phytochemical constituents that make Nigella sativa particularly unique: thymoquinone (TQ), thymohydroquinone (THQ), and thymol.All three of these natural compounds are found in the essential oil of Nigella sativa, and each one lends to the herb's incredible ability to supplant conventional pharmaceuticals, including popular antibiotics and many antiviral and antifungal drugs. 
Thymoquinone is considered to be the primary active ingredient in Nigella sativa, probably because it's the most studied of its known constituents. Research dating back to the 1960s suggests that thymoquinone bears powerful antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, hepatoprotective, and anti-cancer properties.
Thymoquinone has also been shown to positively counteract conditions like asthma, hypertension, headaches, diabetes, influenza, and eczema, as well as viral infections that can lead to inflammation of the brain and spinal cord. And who could forget about its powerful anti-fungal properties that work to keep harmful dermatophytes and yeasts at bay. 
The antioxidant protection of thymoquinone is particularly noteworthy in that it scavenges not only free radicals but also superoxide radicals–meaning it helps to preserve glutathione peroxidase and glutathione S transferase, the two enzymes that aid the "master" antioxidant glutathione in supporting longevity and detoxification throughout the body. 
With regards to cancer, thymoquinone further helps to regulate the body's natural anti-cancer defense system. Though research in this area is ongoing, existing evidence suggests that thymoquinone works to induce apoptosis, or cell suicide, in cancer cells.  Thymoquinone also controls the Akt pathway, which plays a key role in cell proliferation and survival, cell motility, and angiogenesis.
Thymohydroquinone functions similarly to thymoquinone, with the added benefit that it's one of the most potent acetylcholinesterase (AChE) inhibitors in existence. AChE inhibitors of the pharmaceutical variety are often used to treat cognitive abnormalities such as dementia and Alzheimer's disease, as well as autism, glaucoma, neurodegenerative disease, schizophrenia, postural tachycardia syndrome, and Parkinson's disease, suggesting that thymohydroquinone could be a powerful natural alternative.[12, 13]
Thymol is the same active monoterpene in the thyme herb that's commonly used in natural medicine to kill tuberculosis and other viral-based conditions.  Thymol is also a powerful natural disinfectant and pesticide, which is why it's often used in natural household sprays and garden products in lieu of its various synthetic counterparts, many of which are known to be harmful to animals and humans.
Nigella and cannabis: a one-two punch against cancer and other diseases
One of the most promising applications for Nigella sativa is as an anti-cancer food, both in prevention and treatment. Its three "thymos" work in synergistic cooperation to stop cancer cells from growing and spreading, while simultaneously triggering their programmed cell death. Consuming Nigella sativa seeds and oil can further aid in promoting cell cycle arrest while blocking cancer cells from replicating and forming into secondary malignant growths.
"The anti-tumor effects of thymoquinone have ... been investigated in tumor xenograft mice models for colon, prostate, pancreatic and lung cancer," one study explains.  Animal research data supported that a combination of conventional chemotherapeutic medicine with thymoquinone has a potent therapeutic effect and creates less toxicity load in the physiological system. "The combination of thymoquinone and conventional chemotherapeutic drugs could produce a greater therapeutic effect as well as reduce the toxicity of the latter."
What's more, the prospect of combining nigella sativa with its cannabis Sativa cousin suggests even further supportive benefits against cancer. The many unique cannabinoid constituents present in cannabis sativa already have the potential to replace practically every synthetic drug in the medicine cabinet, and research suggests that using the whole plant in conjunction with Nigella sativa could produce even greater benefits.
Another common finding between Cannabis sativa and Nigella sativa is both of these herbal plants have anticancer property. Cannabinoids present in Cannabis sativa including tetrahydrocannabinol possess anticancer property, whereas thymoquinone along with other biologically active constituents present in Nigella sativa also has antitumor activity. [16, 17] Experts recommended a combination of this herbal agent with other conventional anticancer drugs can reduce tumor development, progression, and metastasis. [18, 19]
Whole-plant cannabis sativa has already been shown to produce what's known as an "entourage" effect throughout the body, meaning its many diverse constituents work in almost supernatural harmony with one another to support comprehensive health and well-being.
Combined with Nigella sativa, this entourage effect expands even further in ways that modern science is only just beginning to uncover– and future research data assists to establish the safety profile and estimate the correct dose of the combination therapy of these two sativa species.
Jukic M, Politeo O, Maksimovic M, Milos M, Milos M. In vitro acetylcholinesterase inhibitory properties of thymol, carvacrol and their derivatives thymoquinone and thymohydroquinone. Phytother Res. 2007 Mar;21(3):259-61. Online available at https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/17186491
Hongxia Niu, Chao Ma, Peng Cui, Wanliang Shi, Shuo Zhang, Jie Feng et al. Identification of drug candidates that enhance pyrazinamide activity from a clinical compound library. Emerging Microbes & Infections volume6, pagee27 (2017) Online available at https://www.nature.com/articles/emi201723
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