Dill’s unique health benefits come from two types of healing components: monoterpenes, including carvone, limonene, and anethofuran and flavonoids , including kaempferol and vicenin.
The monoterpene components of dill have been shown to activate the enzyme glutathione-S-transferase, which helps attach the anti-oxidant molecule glutathione to oxidized molecules that would otherwise do damage in the body. The activity of dill’s volatile oils qualify it as a “chemo-protective” food (much like parsley) that can help neutralize particular types of carcinogens, such as the benzopyrenes that are part of cigarette smoke, charcoal grill smoke and the smoke produced by trash incinerators.
The total volatile oil portion of dill has also been studied for its ability to prevent bacterial overgrowth. In this respect, dill shares the stage with garlic, which has also been shown to have “bacteriostatic” or bacteria-regulating effects.
In addition to its chemo-protective and bacterio-static properties, dill is a very good source of calcium. Calcium is important for reducing the bone loss that occurs after menopause and in some conditions, such as rheumatoid arthritis. In addition, dill as a good source of dietary fiber and a good source of the minerals manganese, iron and magnesium.
It is also a good source of vitamin A (in the form of pro-vitamin A carotenoid phytonutrients).
Dill has also antibacterial activity against Staphylococcus aureusand antimicrobial activity against Saccharomyces cerevisiae.