Coriander or cilantro is an annual herb that has widespread use in traditional Indian cuisine. A good source of dietary fibre, Coriandrum sativum has immense medicinal value as well. Different civilizations have been using coriander as a traditional remedy and flavouring agent. Coriander plant as a whole is a rich source of lipids such as petroselinic acid and essential oils.

Native to the regions of Southern Europe, and Northern and Southwestern Africa, the coriander plant is a soft herb, usually about 50 cm in height. The leaves of this plant are variable in shape; though they are usually broad lobed at the base and thin and feathery towards the outer edges. In Ayurveda, coriander has been highly appreciated as a trishodic (provides three benefits) spice by increasing appetite, aiding in digestion and fighting infections.

Research suggests that coriander plant is loaded with biologically active compounds that impart it with several therapeutic properties such as anti-diabetic, anti-oxidant, anti-microbial, anti-epileptic (prevents epilepsy), anti-depressant, anti-inflammatory (reduces swelling), anti-dyslipidemic (lowers blood lipids as cholesterol and triglycerides), neuroprotective (protects memory cells), anti-hypertensive (lowers blood pressure) and diuretic (increases urination). 

Some Basic Facts About Coriander

  • Botanical Name: Coriandrum sativum
  • Family: Apiaceae
  • Common Name: Coriander, cilantro, Chinese parsley
  • Sanskrit Name: Dhaniya
  • Parts Used: Leaves, Stem, Seeds
  • Geographical Distribution: Southern Europe, Northern Africa, Southwestern Africa
  1. Coriander nutrition facts
  2. Coriander leaf benefits
  3. Coriander leaves juice benefits
  4. Medicinal Benefits of Coriander
  5. Other benefits of Coriander
  6. How to make coriander juice
  7. Side effects of coriander

Coriander is well known for its health benefits. According to the USDA, the nutritional values of coriander for a 100 g serving are as in this table.

Nutrient Value (per 100 gm)
Carbohydrates 3.67 g
Dietary Fibre 2.80 g
Cholesterol 0 g
Fat 0.52 g
Protein 2.13 g
Vitamin A 67.48 mg
Vitamin C 27 mg
Vitamin E 2.50 mg
Vitamin K 310 mcg
Thiamin 0.067 mg
Niacin 1.114 mg
Riboflavin 0.162 mg
Pyridoxine 0.149 mg
Pantothenic Acid 0.570 mg
Calcium 67 mg
Magnesium 26 mg
Iron 1.77 mg
Manganese 0.426 mg
Selenium 0.9 mg
Phosphorus 48 mg
Zinc 0.50 mg
Potassium 521 mg
Sodium 46 mg

Coriander has long been used as a condiment (flavour enhancer) in foods. Adding coriander to your regular diet can benefit your health in several ways. 

Even though the entire plant body of coriander has a number of uses and benefits, the plant part which mostly comes of great use is coriander leaves.

Let us explore the uses and health benefits of coriander leaves.

Coriander leaves as antioxidants

Human body is continuously exposed to external toxins present in the surrounding environment.

In reaction to these toxins and as a result of normal metabolic processes, the body produces free radicals (for example superoxide ions, which is a type of oxygen) that cause damage to the cells and in the long run gives rise to chronic diseases such as heart diseases, diabetes and cancer as well.

Coriander is a good source of antioxidants, compounds that neutralise free radicals.

Extract prepared from the leaves of coriander can reduce oxidative stress via the action of a large number of antioxidants like glutathione and minimize the damage caused by the free radicals. Thus helping maintain overall health.

(Read more: What is metabolism)

Coriander leaves for blood pressure

Salad prepared with coriander leaves has often been found to be very beneficial in patients suffering from hypertension.

Coriander is rich in calcium, which upon interaction with acetylcholine is responsible for releasing blood tension.

Intake of coriander thus has the potential of reducing blood pressure levels. This property of coriander also helps in reducing the chances of occurrence of numerous cardiovascular (heart) conditions such as cardiac arrest and stroke.

(Read more: Foods to avoid with high blood pressure)

Coriander leaves for good memory

Extensive studies on coriander suggest that this herb significantly helps in improving memory function.

(Read more: Poor memory causes)

The primary manner in which coriander helps in boosting memory is by blocking the cholinesterase enzyme (an enzyme present in the central nervous system), which is responsible for the breakdown of acetylcholine, a neurotransmitter (helps in conducting nerve signals).

Acetylcholine is required for the activation of muscle cells in the body. Coriander lowers the levels of oxidative stress in the brain, which blocks the activity of cholinesterase and promotes the build-up of acetylcholine. This, in turn, helps in improving memory.

(Read more: How to improve memory)

Coriander leaves for the liver

A vast majority of metabolic functions in the human body are performed by the liver. Coriandrum sativum, being rich in antioxidants, acts as a hepatoprotective (protects the liver) by increasing the activity of certain enzymes as catalase, glutathione peroxidase, and superoxide dismutase. These enzymes help in removing toxins such as hydroxyl radicals (damage-causing agents) from the body by binding with them. This, in turn, improves the functioning capacity of the liver.

(Read more: Foods to improve liver health)

Coriander leaves for cholesterol

Bioactive compounds present in coriander act as powerful antioxidants. These compounds help in regularising cholesterol levels in the body. Upon regular coriander consumption, low-density cholesterol (LDL) and very-low-density cholesterol (VLDL) has been found to be reduced in percentage in patients with cardiovascular diseases.

(Read more: Lipid profile/Cholesterol test)

Coriander also helps in reducing cholesterol levels by reducing triglycerides in the blood. Further, it increases the content of high-density cholesterol (HDL) also known as the good cholesterol. 

(Read more: High Cholesterol symptoms

Coriander leaves for kidney

Coriander leaves act as a diuretic and help in the cleaning process of the kidneys by increasing the amount of urination and removing toxic waste from the body.

A recent study indicated that consumption of coriander leaf extract helps prevent oxidative stress in kidneys by reducing the concentration of heavy metals like cadmium, iron and arsenic in the organ. 

Non-dialysis dependant chronic kidney disease patients are often suggested to add coriander to their low salt food to improve flavour.

However, if you have a kidney disease, it is best to talk to a doctor before adding coriander leaves to your regular diet.

(Read more: Chronic kidney disease diet plan)

The juice prepared from grinding fresh coriander leaves in water has therapeutic properties. Also, several concoctions (mixtures) prepared by grinding coriander leaves and mixing them with other ingredients are employed for their health benefits. The major benefits obtained from the juice prepared from coriander leaves have been discussed below. 

Coriander leaves juice for weight loss

Experts have time and again recommended coriander leaves juice for effective weight loss.

The essential oils in coriander leaves help cleanse the gut by eliminating any unwanted microorganisms and removing toxins responsible for causing bloating. This, in turn, aids in achieving weight loss.

Additionally, the polyphenols in coriander leaves help in preventing fat deposition in the body. Ask a dietician to know how to make the best of this property of coriander leaves juice.

(Read more: Seven common weight loss mistakes)

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Coriander leaves juice for healthy skin

Leaves of coriander, when consumed as juice or applied as a paste, can reduce acne and blackheads. People dealing with oily skin can also make use of coriander leaf juice or paste to improve skin health.

Coriander leaf juice has antibacterial and antifungal properties. It acts as a cleanser that helps removes the bacteria and fungi from the skin surface that are responsible for various skin problems.

However, if you have a skin condition, talk to a dermatologist before using coriander juice or paste as a home remedy

Coriander leaves juice for hair loss

Coriander leaf juice or paste can help prevent loss of hair. This is because coriander is rich in vitamin A, vitamin B, and Vitamin K.

Vitamin K is essential for the formation of keratin. Keratin is the protein required for strengthening hair follicles and preventing hair from breaking.

Intake of coriander leaf juice thus helps in the formation and accumulation of keratin protein, resulting in enhanced hair growth. It also imparts more volume and lustre (shine) to the hair.

(Read more: Home remedies for thicker hair) 

Coriander has several useful medicinal benefits for various diseases apart from the above-mentioned health benefits. Some of these benefits are discussed in detail below. 

  • Detoxifies the body: Corriander improves the function of liver and kidneys, the natural detoxifying organs of our body. It also promotes diuresis and increases the expulsion of toxins from blood.
  • Improves brain function: Coriander leaves have an antioxidative effect on brain, which, it has been found to improve memory and cognition. It also reduces the risk of neurodegenerative diseases along with mediating an anti-stress and anti-depressant effect.
  • Promotes weight loss: The detoxifying effects of coriander makes it an excellent weight loss remedy. It also reduces fat accumulation in body and improves gut microflora, promoting reduction in body weight.
  • Benefits for skin: Coriander paste and juice, when consumed or applied topically is known to reduce acne and blackheads. It also reduces bacterial and fungal growth on skin and is especially helpful for oily skin types.
  • Improves oral health: Corriander is a natural antibacterial which cleanses the palate and reduces bad breath. It is also suggested to be effective in healing mouth ulcers.
  • For urinary tract infections: Corriander has a dual benefit in alleviating UTI symptoms. Not only does it helps flush out pathogens from the body but also it inhibits the growth of microbes in the urinary tract.

Coriander for urinary tract infections

Urinary Tract Infection (UTI) is mainly caused due to infections by pathogens in the genital areas. They cause symptoms like a burning sensation during urinating, bad odour in urine and frequent urge to urinate. In folk medicines, coriander has been used to treat urinary tract infections. The benefit is attributed to the antimicrobial and diuretic properties of coriander and the effectiveness of this herb against a number of UTI causing pathogens that are otherwise resistant to drugs.

(Read more: Home remedies for UTIs)

Coriander for rashes and allergies

Coriander has been famously known for its anti-inflammatory properties. The juice of coriander is recommended by ayurvedic practitioners for the treatment of itching caused by allergies, inflammation, skin rashes and insect bites. Coriander juice may also prove to be effective in the treatment of burns, hay fever (allergic rhinitis).

Coriander for cancer

Coriander is claimed to act against cancer. In a study, the juice of coriander has been found to possess anti-mutagenic (reducing mutations that give rise to conditions as cancer) properties. The study indicated that coriander can reduce mutation in DNA, especially in products that are carcinogenic (causes cancer). The potential of coriander to act as anti-carcinogenic, however, is yet to be tested in-vivo.

(Read more: Diet for cancer patients)

Coriander for anxiety and depression

Coriander is also used widely for its anti-depressant properties. Experts studying the effects of coriander on Alzheimer’s disease have discovered its potential uses in treating anxiety. In the study, it was found that volatile oils from coriander, when given to patients with nervous system diseases, can also help to counteract anxiety and stress. This is mainly achieved due to a decrease in the glutathione levels, which causes a rise in anti-oxidative activity of the brain cells.

(Read more: Depression symptoms)

Coriander for Alzheimer’s Disease

Research suggests that neurodegenerative (degeneration of the nervous system) disorders like Alzheimer's may be prevented by the administration of coriander in a dose-dependent manner. Deficiency of the neurotransmitter, acetylcholine leads to Alzheimer’s. Acetylcholine is also required for muscle movement function and its degradation can lead to conditions like paralysis. Coriander can prevent the disease by blocking the activity of the enzyme cholinesterase which is responsible for the breakdown of acetylcholine.

According to a study published in Physiology and Behaviour, coriander aids in improving cognition by neutralising free radicals.

More studies are still needed to better understand and confirm the benefits of coriander in Alzheimer's.

(Read more: Alzheimer's disease diet)

Coriander for arthritis

Coriandrum sativum has anti-inflammatory properties. It is thus highly effective in the management of diseases like arthritis. Patients with rheumatoid arthritis experience severe skin swelling and granulation. It has been found in a study that coriander extract can help in the reduction of this swelling and improve skin appearance.

In another study, a group of osteoarthritis patients were given about 5g of coriander leaf powder every day for a period of 60 days. The results were compared to that of a group of untreated patients. It was found that coriander leaves significantly reduced osteoarthritis symptoms. As per the study, this was due to a synergistic action of various minerals, vitamins, and antioxidants present in the leaves.

(Read more: Exercises for arthritis)

Coriander, apart from its health and medicinal uses, can also lead to certain other noteworthy benefits if included in the regular diet. These benefits have been listed here.

Coriander for food poisoning

Intake of coriander can help in the cleansing of the gut and preventing microbial infections. Pathogens such as unwanted bacteria and fungi may enter the body via contaminated food and water. The antimicrobial properties of coriander are also useful in preventing any kind of food poisoning arising from foodborne pathogens.

Coriander for microbial infections

Coriander can help prevent a number of microbial infections due to the presence of long-chain aldehydes in its essential oil. The herb is especially indicated to be effective against Infections caused by pathogens like Listeria monocytogenes (causes listeriosis), Salmonella enterica (causes a range of stomach issues), Escherichia coli (causes diarrhoea and dysentery), Bacillus spp (causes a range of diseases), Staphylococcus aureus (causes skin infections), and Candida albicans (causes genital yeast infection).

(Read more: Bacterial infections symptoms)

Coriander for oral hygiene

Coriander can be used individually or with infusions with other cleansing agents (like cloves) for maintaining oral hygiene. The essential oil, citronellol, present in coriander are antisceptic in function. This property helps in the healing of mouth ulcer and in reducing bad breath. Studies claim a significant reduction in mouth ulcers upon application of coriander paste.

(Read more: Oral hygiene tips) 

Coriander for healthy eyes

Coriander is a rich source of vitamin A, which is essential for the development of the rods and cone cells in the eye that assist in vision. The high amount of vitamin A present in coriander helps protect the eyes. It also helps to prevent night blindness. The Vitamin A present in coriander comes from carotenoids as beta-carotene (from which vitamin A is produced) and thus, even a very high amount does not cause toxicity.

(Read more: How to improve eyesight)

Coriander juice can be prepared at home by following the simple steps mentioned below.

  • Clean and finely chop a handful of coriander leaves.
  • Add the coriander leaves to about 1/2 cup of water and grind it in a juicer.
  • Strain the juice through a strainer and serve it immediately.
  • The juice can also be diluted for consumption by adding extra water (about 1/4 cup).

Coriander, in general, is safe when consumed in the regular amount and even as taken in the medicinal amount prescribed. However, it may show some side effects in some people. These include:

  • Certain instances of coriander causing stomach pain and diarrhoea have been reported in some people. If the condition persists, it is important that one consults a physician.
  • Increased consumption of coriander may cause allergic reactions in certain people. In case, any sort of allergy develops, consult your physician immediately and stop further use until proper consultation.
  • Excessive consumption of coriander can cause the blood pressure to become very low in certain people. This can lead to periods of lightheadedness or unconsciousness.
  • People with respiratory disorders should consult a physician before consumption of coriander as there have been reports of shortness of breath and respiratory disorders in certain people with such conditions.
  • The acidic elements present in coriander can cause sensitivity towards sunlight in some people.
  • There have been reports of chest pain in some people due to the intake of coriander. It is, therefore, highly essential that a physician is consulted before coriander is consumed for medicinal purposes 
  • Coriander can harm the activities of the human reproductive glands and might hamper the development of the foetus in pregnant women. Pregnant women, thus, should not consume coriander in excessive amounts.

Medicines / Products that contain Coriander


  1. Liu QF et al. Coriandrum sativum Suppresses Aβ42-Induced ROS Increases, Glial Cell Proliferation, and ERK Activation. Am J Chin Med. 2016;44(7):1325-1347. Epub 2016 Oct 25. PMID: 27776428
  2. van Dort JB, Ketelaars GA, Daems WT, de Bruijn WC. Ultrastructural electron probe X-ray microanalytical reaction product identification of three different enzymes in the same mouse resident peritoneal macrophage. Histochemistry. 1989;92(3):243-53. PMID: 2777642
  3. Samojlik I, Lakić N, Mimica-Dukić N, Daković-Svajcer K, Bozin B. Antioxidant and hepatoprotective potential of essential oils of coriander (Coriandrum sativum L.) and caraway (Carum carvi L.) (Apiaceae). J Agric Food Chem. 2010 Aug 11;58(15):8848-53. PMID: 20608729
  4. Wattanathorn J. Anticataractogenesis and Antiretinopathy Effects of the Novel Protective Agent Containing the Combined Extract of Mango and Vietnamese Coriander in STZ-Diabetic Rats. Oxid Med Cell Longev. 2017;2017:5290161. PMID: 28904737
  5. Aissaoui A, El-Hilaly J, Israili ZH, Lyoussi B. Acute diuretic effect of continuous intravenous infusion of an aqueous extract of Coriandrum sativum L. in anesthetized rats. J Ethnopharmacol. 2008 Jan 4;115(1):89-95. Epub 2007 Sep 16. PMID: 17961943
  6. Sahib NG et al. Coriander (Coriandrum sativum L.): a potential source of high-value components for functional foods and nutraceuticals--a review. Phytother Res. 2013 Oct;27(10):1439-56. PMID: 23281145
  7. Tang EL, Rajarajeswaran J, Fung SY, Kanthimathi MS. Antioxidant activity of Coriandrum sativum and protection against DNA damage and cancer cell migration. Format: AbstractSend to BMC Complement Altern Med. 2013 Dec 9;13:347. PMID: 24517259
  8. Patel DK et al. Cardio protective effect of Coriandrum sativum L. on isoproterenol induced myocardial necrosis in rats. Food Chem Toxicol. 2012 Sep;50(9):3120-5. PMID: 22750725
  9. Nishio R, Tamano H, Morioka H, Takeuchi A, Takeda A. Intake of Heated Leaf Extract of Coriandrum sativum Contributes to Resistance to Oxidative Stress via Decreases in Heavy Metal Concentrations in the Kidney. Plant Foods Hum Nutr. 2019 Jun;74(2):204-209. PMID: 30783906.
  10. Cuppari Lilian, et al. A practical approach to dietary interventions for nondialysis-dependent CKD patients: the experience of a reference nephrology center in Brazil. BMC Nephrol. 2016; 17: 85. PMID: 27423180.
  11. Rajeshwari C.U., Siri Suphi, Andallu Bondada. Antioxidant and antiarthritic potential of coriander (Coriandrum sativum L.) leaves. e-SPEN Journal. 2012; 7(6): e223–e228.
  12. Cioanca O, Hritcu L, Mihasan M, Hancianu M. Cognitive-enhancing and antioxidant activities of inhaled coriander volatile oil in amyloid β(1-42) rat model of Alzheimer's disease. Physiol Behav. 2013 Aug 15; 120: 193-202. PMID: 23958472.
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