Health & Fitness

Open, sesame!


King Features Syndicate

In “One Thousand and One Nights,” the story “Ali Baba and the Forty Thieves” explains how Ali Baba happened to discover that the words “open, sesame” magically revealed the entrance to a cave and its secrets: a hidden treasure stashed by 40 thieves. (Ali’s less clever brother couldn’t remember the name of the seed, and got stuck inside the cave.) And now, a group of research scientists from Rio de Janeiro have performed their own version of “open, sesame” and discovered the treasure found in sesame seeds and their extracts: powerful antioxidant benefits.

After combing through scores of clinical trials, the researchers focused on the benefits of sesame for people with Type 2 diabetes, elevated levels of lousy LDL cholesterol and high blood pressure. What they found was that increasing sesame consumption leads to increased blood levels of antioxidants and reduced oxidative stress. In other words, sesame and sesame oil help reduce bodywide inflammation, help counter insulin resistance and lower elevated LDL cholesterol. And that eases overall strain on your cardiovascular system. Reducing oxidative stress also means you’re making your RealAge younger, are ready for a better sex life, and you’ll have fewer wrinkles!

So check out the delicious recipes for sesame-crusted salmon, vegan sesame noodles, sesame-sriracha crusted ahi tuna, Tim Ferriss’ crisp-baked sesame-coconut chicken, and Dr. Joel Fuhrman’s Szechuan sesame stir-fry and orange sesame dressing at Then you’ll be able to do what Ali Baba and the Rio researchers did: Discover the riches of open sesame!

Mehmet Oz, M.D. is host of “The Dr. Oz Show,” and Mike Roizen, M.D. is Chief Wellness Officer and Chair of Wellness Institute at Cleveland Clinic. To live your healthiest, tune into “The Dr. Oz Show” or visit