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  • Botanical: Sesamum orientale
  • Family: Pedaliacae
  • Hits: 1333


Sesamum orientale



Known as


Old Use

medical, culinary, industry

Parts Used

leaves, seed


bladder disease, bile weakness, constipation, coughs, dry skin, gastrointestinal, hair loss, hemorrhoids, laxative, liver weakness, joint inflammation, joint pain, menstruation promotion, osteoporosis

Heart & Circulation


Hormone & Sexual Organs

menstruation promotion

Muscle & Joints

joint inflammation, joint pain, osteoporosis

Respiratory System


Stomach & Intestinal

bladder disease, bladder weakness, constipation, gastrointestinal, laxative, liver weakness

Skin & Hair

dry skin, hair loss


astringent, diuretic, galactagogue, tonic


Sesamum indicum is an annual plant, with an erect, pubescent, branching stem, 2 to 4 feet in height. The leaves are ovate-lanceolate, or oblong; the lower ones trilobed and sometimes ternate; the upper undivided, irregularly serrate and pointed. The flowers are of a pale-purple color, axillary, and borne on short glandular pedicels. The fruit is an oblong, mucronate, pubescent capsule, containing numerous small, oval, yellowish seeds

Properties & Uses

The leaves and seed are astringent. The leaves are rich in a gummy matter and when mixed with water they form a rich bland mucilage that is used in the treatment of infant cholera, diarrhoea, dysentery, catarrh and bladder troubles. The seed is diuretic, emollient, galactogogue, lenitive and tonic, and acts as a tonic for the liver and kidneys. It is taken internally in the treatment of premature hair loss and greying, convalescence, chronic dry constipation, dental caries, osteoporosis, stiff joints, dry cough etc. It has a marked ability to increase milk production in nursing mothers. Externally it is used to treat haemorrhoids and ulcers. The seed is very high in calories and so should be used with caution by people who are overweight. The oil is laxative and also promotes menstruation. It is used to treat dry constipation in the elderly. Mixed with lime water, the oil is used externally to treat burns, boils and ulcers. A decoction of the root is used in various traditions to treat asthma and coughs.

Other Uses

The seed contains up to 55% of a semi-drying oil. Apart from being edible, it is also used in soap making, lighting, as a lubricant and a source of pharmaceutical drugs etc. When added to the insecticide pyrethrum it acts as a synergist, a 10% content of oil doubling the potency of the pyrethrum. The oil can also be used in barrier creams to protect the skin from harmful UV light radiation.

Seed - cooked. Usually roasted or stewed, it can also be ground into a powder and used as a flour, added to breads, vegetables etc, used to make sweetmeats, or crushed and used as a butter or as 'tahini'. It can also be fermented into 'tempeh', ground into a powder and mixed with a sweetener to make 'halva', or made into a paste and used as the spread 'tahini'. The seeds can also be sprouted and used in salads. The seed contains about 21.5% protein, 60.8% fat, 8.9% carbohydrate, 3.4% ash. It is a rich source of unsaturated fatty acids, calcium and vitamins A, B and E. The calcium is absorbed well by the body, making sesame an excellent dietary source. An edible oil is obtained from the seed. It is used for cooking or in margarines etc. The oil is very stable and will keep for years without turning rancid. Leaves - raw or cooked as a potherb or added to soups.


none known


Neutral lipids, glycolipids and phospholipids (also in flowers), arme, cystine, histidine, isoleucine, leucine, lysine, methionine, phenylalanine, threonine, tryptophan, tyrosine, valine, a- and J.3-globulins, p-aminobenzoic acid, ascorbic acid, biotin, choline, folic acid, inositol, niacin, iicotinic acid, pantothenic acid, pyridoxine, rib flavine, sesamol, thiamine, a- and J.3-tocopherols, galactose, glucose, lychnose, plantiose, raffinose, sesamose, sucrose and pentosans, 2-acetyl-3-methylfuran, 2- acetylpyrrole, acetylpyrazine, 2-ethyl-pyrazine, 2,5-diethylpyrazines, 2,3-dimethyland 2,5-dimethylpyrazine, 2-furfurylalcohol, a-formylpyrrole, guaiacol, hexacosanoate, 4-(5-methyl-2-furyl)-3-buten-2-one, 2,6-(3,4- methylenedioxyphenyl)-cis-2,7-dioxabicyclo-(3,3,O)-octane (sesarnin), 2-(3,4- methylenedioxyphenoxy)-6(3,4-methylenedioxyphenyl)-cis-3,7-dioxabicyclo-(3,3,0)- octane (sesamolin), sesamolinol, sesamol, undecadienal, 3-methylbutanal, octanal, phenol, 2,4-arachidic, hexadecenoic, linoleic, lignoceric, myristic, oleic, palmitic, phytic and stearic acids, astaxanthin (carotinoid), -tocopherol, sitosterol, campesterol, A-avenasterol and stigmasterol, sesaminol glucosides -sesaminol 2'- 0-beta-D-glucopyranoside, sesaminol 2'-0-beta-D-glucopyranosyl (1 to 2)-0- beta-D-glucopyranoside and sesaminol 2'-0-beta-D-glucopyranosyl (1 to 2)-0- {beta-D-glucopyranosyl (1 to 6)-beta-D-glucopyranoside (seeds); pedah (leaves); pinzresinol, tetrahydro- 1 [3-methoxy-4-hydroxyphenoxyl-4-[3,4- (methy1enedioxy)phenyll-lH, 3H-furo [3,4-C] furan, salicylates (plant).

For educational purposes only This information has not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This information is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.

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