Coriander spice (seed): Benefits and side effects

Introduction

Coriander spice or seed (Coriandrum sativum L.; family Apiaceae) is a well-known herb widely used as a spice, or in folk medicine, and in the pharmacy and food industries. It is globular and aromatic with a slightly bittersweet, spicy taste mainly used as curry powder and is used in minced meat dishes and stews. Some of the coriander spice benefits are as below

Coriander essential oil

Coriander seed oil is the world’s second most relevant essential oil, obtained by steam distillation from coriander seeds. The oil is a colorless or pale yellow liquid with a characteristic odor and mild, sweet, warm, and aromatic flavor. Coriander essential oil is the main flavoring agent in many food items, such as gin, bread, soups, sauces, canned goods, candy, used in cosmetics, body care products, and perfumes. The major compounds present in essential oil are linalool (67.70%); α-pinene (10.5%); γ-terpinene (9.0%); geranyl acetate (4.0%); camphor (3.0%); and geraniol (1.9%) (1).

Geographical distribution

Coriander, an Italian native plant, widely grown in the Indian sub-continent as well as Europe, Northern Africa, and Asia

Nutritional value of coriander seed

Coriander seed contains essential oil, sugars (glucose, fructose, and sucrose), alkaloids, flavones, resins, tannins, anthraquinones, sterols (beta-sitosterol and beta-sitosteroline), and fixed oils. According to USDA nutrient value of coriander seeds per 100 g is as follows (2).

Compound                                                                                     Amounts per 100 g.
Water 8.86 g
Energy 298 Kcal
Protein 12.37 g
Total lipid (fat) 17.77 g
Carbohydrate 54.99 g
Fiber, total dietary 41.9 g
Calcium 709 mg
Iron, Fe 16.32 mg
Magnesium 330 mg
Phosphorus 409 mg
Potassium 1267 mg
Sodium 35 mg
Zinc 4.70 mg
Copper 0.97 mg
Manganese 1.9 mg
Vitamin C 21 mg
Thiamin 0.24 mg
Riboflavin 0.29 mg
Niacin 2.13 mg
Fatty acids, total saturated 0.99 g
Fatty acids, total monounsaturated 13.58 g
Fatty acids, total polyunsaturated 1.75 g

Health benefits of coriander spice (seed)

1. Treat arthritis

Coriander seed consumption helps to reduce the joint swelling and expression of pro-inflammatory cytokines thus prevent inflammation (3).

2. Detoxify lead-induced oxidative stress in the brain

Lead exposure is known to cause apoptotic neurodegeneration and neurobehavioral abnormalities in the developing and adult brain by impairing cognition and memory. However, coriander seed reduces oxidative stress produced by lead thus protect the brain (4).

3. Antioxidant and Anti-diabetic properties of coriander seeds

Intake of coriander seed in the diet helps to lower the blood glucose level and increase insulin release from the beta cells of the pancreas. It also contains phytoconstituents like terpene and fatty acids which inhibit the process of peroxidative damage and activates the antioxidant enzymes and antioxidant levels in a diabetic person, therefore, intake of coriander seed decreases the oxidative burden in diabetes mellitus (5).

4. Lower cholesterol level

One of the coriander spice benefits is that it is effective to decrease total cholesterol and triglycerides, low-density lipoprotein cholesterol levels, and increase high-density lipoprotein cholesterol levels. Moreover, coriander seed also enhances bile acid formation and increases the degradation of cholesterol to fecal bile acids and neutral sterols thus prevent hypocholesterolemia and show cardiovascular protective effects (6).

5. Contraceptive properties of Coriander seed

It contains a bioactive compound that decreases serum progesterone levels and may responsible for the anti-implantation effect thus coriander seed may use as an antifertility agent in women (7).

6. Effect on dyspepsia, abdominal colic, diarrhea, hypertension, and diuretic

Intake of coriander stimulates gastric acid secretion, relaxes smooth muscles which further treat hyperactive gut disorders such as abdominal colic and diarrhea. Moreover coriander also beneficial to lower both systolic and diastolic blood pressure as well as increase the urine output (diuresis) (8).

7. Coriander seeds are good Healthy vision & prevent eye complications

A research study done on rat’s combination of mango seed and coriander consumption is effective to prevent eye complications such as cataracts and retinopathy in diabetes mellitus patients due to the presence of the high amount of polyphenol-rich substances (9).

8. Treat diarrhea

Consumption of coriander seed is effective for the treatment of diarrhea caused by Enterotoxigenic E.coli, Enteropathogenic E.coli, Salmonella typhimurium, Salmonella entertidis, Shigella dysentriae, Shigella, Candida albicans, Candida tropicalis, and Candida krusei (10).

9. Treat Inflammatory bowel disease

Coriander spice benefits are due to its anti-inflammatory, analgesic, antioxidant, and antispasmodic properties. It helps in reducing the inflammation in the colon thus helpful for the treatment of colitis and management of inflammatory bowel disorders in humans (11).

Coriander seed oil health benefits

1. Treat anxiety

Coriander seed contains essential oil especially linalool (60–70%) and flavonoids which are useful for the management of central nervous system disorders and neurodegenerative diseases, such as Alzheimer’s disease thus coriander seed helps to treat anxiety as well as depression (12).

2. Antioxidant and Antimicrobial properties

Coriander essential oil contains β-linalool which is effective to fight against different bacteria such as Bacillus subtilis, Stenotropomonas maltophilia, and Penicillium expansum by preventing biofilm formation. It also contains linalool, α-pinene, p-cymene, γ-terpinene, limonene, and linalyl acetate which exhibit antifungal activity against several types of fungi, and Candida species (13). Therefore, coriander essential oil is beneficial to remove harmful radicals from the body and protect against various diseases (14).

3. Anti-inflammatory properties

Erythema, is one type of skin redness caused by too much exposure to sunlight or induced by UV. Coriander oil contains lipolotion is beneficial to reduce UV‐induced erythema thus useful for the treatment of inflammatory skin diseases (15).

 Side effect of coriander seed

Research study proved that coriander seed is not toxic up to a dose of 3000 mg/kg body weight and did not affect the heart; liver and kidney thus can be considered as safe for consumption (16). Whereas coriander oil is irritating to rabbits, but not to humans, and its consumption is considered safe without any adverse effects (17).

1. Risk of Beer anaphylaxis

Intakes of coriander-flavored beer cause anaphylaxis in young women which may be due to the presence of Bet v 1- and profilin-related allergens (18). These molecules may be responsible for Type I allergy thus precaution should be needed before consumption (19).

2. The effect in pregnancy and infants

A research study suggested that intake of coriander metabolites affects the various parts of the brain that are important for memory and learning skills, therefore, coriander does not improve learning within a short period of time, however, in the long-term, it improves performance (20).